Keep your body low to the ice by bending your knees. The lower you are to the ice, the more speed you will gain.
Try to move your arms front to back, this will ensure that your entire body will be moving completely forward and not side to side. Any side to side movement will slow down your overall speed.
Keep your head up when skating, this will give you a better sense of direction and balance and will increase your breathing skills. When your head is down, your breathing process will be limited. The easier it is to breathe, the more energy you will have, to be a faster skater.
Try to fully extend your back leg, with every push. At the end of every stride, snap your toe to ensure a fully maximized stride.
Try to avoid a high leg kick when recovering after your initial stride. A high leg kick, upon recovery will slow down your stride. Stride recovery should be smooth and close to the ice without dragging your skate.
How to Shoot Harder
Make sure that your stick is not too long and not too short. Once you are on skates, your stick (in an upright position) should come up to your throat, but no higher than your chin. This will give you proper maneuverability, when stickhandling and shooting.
When shooting the puck, try to push down on your stick, before releasing the puck. This will create torque on your stick, hich will give you more whip on your shot. The more torque, the more power!
When releasing the puck, try to turn your stick and wrists over. Try to avoid opening up the face of the blade, this will cause the puck to flutter and will result in a loss of power and accuracy.
Try to follow through to your target with your stick blade. Your blade should finish up, aiming right at your target area. This will ensure power and accuracy.
Try to avoid dropping the bottom hand off your stick, upon releasing your shot.
How to Turn Faster
Try to turn your shoulders and your head quickly, when making your cut. The longer that you take to turn your upper body, the wider and the slower your turn will take.
Keep your knees bent, with your skates about shoulder width apart. When your knees are bent, this will keep you low to the ice, thus giving you the quickness of direction change.
Force your lead skate (inside skate) in front of your power skate (outside skate). This will give you the balance needed to make your quick turns. Try to lean into your turn with your body as you are making your cut.
As you come out of your turn, try to cross-over, power skate over the lead skate, with a slight hop, to give you power as you exit your turn. This will be necessary, as you will decelerate as you make your turn, crossing over will help you to accelerate and get your speed back to normal.
How to Receive a Pass Cleanly
Always position your stick on the ice and in the middle of both legs (forming a triangle). Try not to have your stick positioned off your back skate, this will not allow you to cradle the puck once you receive it.
As you receive the puck, try to keep your knees bent, the lower to the ice that you can force your body, the easier it will be, to maintain control of the puck.
Try to keep your elbows away from your body, when receiving your pass. This will give you more range of motion, if the pass is either in tight or slightly ahead of you.
Make sure that you have a good amount of pressure on your stick, to ensure that the pass will not go under your stick blade.
Always cradle the puck (drawing the stick back), to ensure full control. It is important to have soft hands, when trying to receive the puck cleanly, but at the same time pushing down on the stick.
How to Train Off-Ice
There are many things that a hockey player can do to stay finely tuned, while not on the ice. Take a skill that you want to improve and work on developing your technique with concentrated repetitions.
Puckhandling: On a cement floor or flat surface, you can practice stickhandling using either a golf ball or baseball, working on keeping your head up and moving the ball back and forth and side to side. Try to work in some toe drags to get the feel of making destinct moves with your head up.
Leg Strength: Try to use stride hops, with deep knee bend, pushing your body forward, in a similar manner to your ice stride, but keeping yourself low to the ground, with quick knee pushes. This will keep your stride technique in proper form, in the off-season.
Wrist Strength: You can sit on a chair, laying the back of your wrists on your knees and you can roll a weighted bar up and down, from your finger tips to you palms, resting the back of your wrists on your knees, while doing your reps. This will increase your wrist strength, for your shot.
Shoulder Strength: A variation of push-ups will increase your shoulder strength. You can do conventional push-ups, one-armed push-ups, clap in between push-ups, legs on a bench push-ups or wall push-outs. All push-ups will give you upper body strength and lessen the chance for shoulder injuries.
How to Control Your Rebounds
When making the save from the butterfly position, make sure that you always have your pads flaired or angled to the corners, with your stick in front of the five hole. This will ensure that once you make the save, your rebounds will be directed to the corners and out of harms way.
It will be important for you to use your stick as much as possible to direct your saves to the corner, the pads will actually serve as a back-up to the stick. Remember you have more control of rebounds with your stick, than you would with your pads.
It will be important for you to keep your upper body upright and big in the net with your glove and blocker in an up, out & open position. Anytime you are making a pad save it is always imperative to keep your body in constant position, to make the second or third save, if your rebounds have not been properly controlled.
Once you go down to the butterfly save, always be ready to pop right back up into your stance, to prepare yourself for the next shot. It is very common for young goalies to go down, but not quickly recovering to their stance position. Simple down ups exercises can improve this skill.
How to Make a Blocker Save
When making your blocker save, it is important to follow the puck directly to your blocker glove, with your eyes. Hand-eye coordination will be the essential skill, in making your blocker save.
Try to "twist your wrist" when making your save, this will ensure that all pucks will get deflected to the corner, and not back towards the middle of the ice. Try to avoid punching at the puck, let the puck come to your blocker, and simply turn your wrist, with timing.
Try to keep your shoulders square when making your blocker save, this will keep your body in proper position, if you should have to quickly make another fast save. Also, keep your glove hand up, out and open in the ready position, in case of another quick shot, after your blocker save.
Keep your pads positioned shoulder width apart, which will give you proper balance, when making your save. Having a well balanced stance will always give you a solid foundation for making your save and increase your timing.
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