Games – My Most Valuable Advice

Tips and Tricks for Hockey Goalie Amateurs

So you want to be a pro hockey player? Besides staying committed to your dream, there are more concrete things you can do to increase your chances of getting there.

Practice skating skills.

At the core, goaltending is about balance and edges. Better skaters, better goaltenders. Before each practice and game, your warmup must include simple skating drills. A T-push, for instance, works for long crease movements, while shuffles are for smaller side-to-side adjustments, like a small side step. You don’t have to take long with either. Maybe go for one set of 10 reps each, which is about two to 10 minutes. Professional goalies’ routines usually include such skating drills. If you do as the pros, you will be one yourself in the future.

Perfect your hand skills.

When the butterfly save advanced in the 1990s, goaltenders began to work on-ice coverage, to an extent overlooking their hands in the process. Make it a point to practice catching pucks as well as blocking shots to the corner at warm-up. Throw 30 pucks into the slot, and, in the middle of your butterfly, get someone to shoot at your hands. Professional goalies usually do this during their regular warm-up.

Prepare your mind.

Goal-tending is 80% mind game. So before you come in contact with the ice, be sure your mind is ready. Look for a quiet spot where you can be alone for at least ten minutes, building up focus. Imagining yourself playing and playing it right can be a great help to your game. It can mean the difference between a good and bad decision at the right or wrong time.

Keep fit.

As the goalie, you need to be the hardest worker and fittest player on your team. Every year, Mike Richter of the New York Rangers’took home the fitness award. Hall of Famer Ed Belfour was once a triathlete. Brian Elliott of St.Louis has a reputation for being one of the hardest-working goalies in history. Your teammates regard you as their rock. Never give them reason to doubt. By staying fit and working hard, they will feel more assured that you will always have their back.

Develop resiliency.

Finally, know that even the best goalies understand that bad goals and more bad games are all part of the package. That is a natural and thus inevitable part of nature. Like the pros, you should learn about the importance of shrugging it off and not letting it get to you. You will get scored on, but it’s not something that should bother you. Martin Brodeur had been scored on close to 3,000 times in his entire carer – now did it stop him on the success path? You very well know the answer.

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