My high school english teachers would hate me for this, but the current state of youth hockey can only be characterized by one word: ridiculousness.  Hockey has a higher burnout rate than any other sport.  The parents are the most crazed. Even worse, many times the coaches have the shortest tempers and very little actual teaching ability.  Not a good situation if you’re looking for a healthy indulgence in the greatest game on earth.  

Mike Boyle brought this to the public eye.  Brian St. Pierre stressed its importance.  

If you’re in the hockey world at all, you need to watch this.

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On Monday I posted 13 questions every hockey player and coach should have the answers to if they’re serious about training to fulfill their hockey potential.  

The list is extensive, but not all-inclusive.  From consulting with coaches and players throughout the years, I know considering all those forms of training can be a bit intimidating.  

The most logical first question is, “Where do I start?”

The most effective first step in developing a successful hockey training program you can make is to add a well-designed dynamic warm-up  before EVERY off- and on-ice session (yes, every one-this means before games AND practices!).  

What’s a dynamic warm-up?  

I’ll tell you what it’s not!  It’s NOT a slow jog around the rink and 15 minutes of stretching.  That’s similar to how I prepare for bed at night…not for high-intensity training.  

A dynamic warm-up should increase your heart rate, improve range of motion around “activity-specific” joints, increase body temperature, and increase the neural drive to working muscles.  

I know it’s Friday so I won’t drag on too long here.  Start to think about adding a dynamic warm-up to all of your training sessions, whether they’re in the weight room, on the track, or on the ice.  Start by considering the movement requirements of ice hockey.  A couple hints:

  1. The range of motion the shoulders, hips, knees, and ankles go through during a game
  2. The directions of the movements and directional changes involved in the movements
  3. The speed and intensity of the movements

Stay tuned over the next couple weeks. I’ll walk you through exactly how I design my dynamic warm-up programs.  

Have a great weekend!

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I’m not quick to recommend a resource to anyone, but Joe Heiler from has put together a great line-up for this teleseminar.  

Check out the line-up!

  1. Gray Cook MSPT, OCS, CSCS
  2. Kyle Kiesel, PT, PhD, ATC, CSCS
  3. Michael Boyle MA, ATC
  4. Charlie Weingroff MSPT, ATC, CSCS
  5. Dr. Stuart M. McGill PhD
  6. Phil Plisky, PT, DSc, OCS, ATC, CSCS
  7. Brett Jones MS, CSCS
  8. Eric Cressey MA, CSCS

Click Here for More Information

I can’t wait.  I would have gladly paid whatever Joe asked for to hear those guys speak, but that’s the best part.  It’s FREE!  

The only reason I can think of to NOT tune in is because none of those names ring a bell for you.  If that’s the case, that’s a tragedy, and all the more reason why you MUST “attend” this teleseminar.  

I GUARANTEE you come away with something that will allow you to better train yourself or your athletes.  

But, as always, I could be crazy.  The choice is yours!

Click Here for More Information

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  1. How is your warm-up preparing your body for high-intensity activity and improving range of motion?
  2. How are you training for core stability?
  3. How are you training for REACTIVE core stability?
  4. How are you training for hockey-specific deceleration?
  5. How are you training for hockey-specific acceleration?
  6. How are you training to improve lower body power?
  7. How are you training to improve upper body power?
  8. How and when are you performing hockey-specific stretches?
  9. How is your conditioning preparing you for high-intensity on-ice performance?
  10. How is your agility training going to transfer to improved on-ice performance?
  11. How is your off-ice hockey training saving you time on the ice?
  12. Is your off-ice training FUN, or is it repetitive and boring?
  13. Do you have a structured off-ice training program with built-in progressions or are you just picking random exercises and hoping for the best?

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It’s been a great week.  Despite cutting my typical caloric intake in half (from around 4,000/day to around or slightly below 2,000/day), I’ve been able to maintain a pretty high level of energy.  I enjoyed my two week break, but it feels great to start training seriously again.

I’ve been pretty shocked at the results so far.  Anytime you start a low carb diet you can expect to lose a significant amount of weight.  According to my friend and colleague Brian St. Pierre, most people store around 500 grams of glycogen.  Each gram of glycogen stores 3-4 grams of water with it (1500-2000 grams).  So if you are training hard (depleting your glycogen levels) and not replenishing them through carbohydrates in the diet, you could lose 2000-2500 grams (2-2.5 kilograms or 4.4-5.5 pounds) within a few days, for the average person.  The more muscle you have and the better trained you are, the more glycogen (and therefore more water) you can store.    

So I expected to lose a couple pounds, quickly.  But not this:

Jan 4: 180.5 lbs
Jan 5: 176
Jan 6: 173
Jan 7: 172.5
Jan 8: 172
Jan 9: 170
Jan 10: I woke up to find that my scale was broken, probably due to some violent jarring during the house-cleaning the day before.

That’s over 10 pounds in one week!  I have no doubt I’d put 6-8 of that back on if I loaded up on carbs and water, but I was still surprised at how quickly that much weight came off.

As promised, here’s my training for the week:

Jan 5:
A1) Hang Clean: 135 x 5, 155 x 3, 165 x 3, 175 x 3
A2) Med. Handle Low-Pulley Row: 120lbs x 1 x 6, 190lbs x 4 x 4
B1) Deadlift: 225 x 5, 315 x 3, 365 x 3, 385 x 3 x (5 x 1) w/ 10-15s between reps
B2) 1-Leg Glute Bridge Hold: 3 x 15s each
C1) BLR SS Iso-Hold: 1 x 30s each BW, 2 x 40lb DB x 2 x 30s each
C2) Glute Ham Raise: 3 x 10 

Jan 6:
A1) Bench Press: 135 x 8, 185 x 5, 225 x 3, 275 x 1, 290 x .6, 290 x .7, 285 x .3
A2) Scap Wall Slides (Facing Wall): 3 x 10
B1) Chin-Up: BW x 5, BW+45 x 2 x 6, 1 x 5, BW+25 x 1 x 5+Help for 6
B2) Incline DB Triceps Extension-to-Close Grip Press: 2 x 35 DB x3 x 8, 2 x 40 DB x 1 x 8
C1) Standing Pallof Iso-Hold from High Pulley w/ Rope: 60lbs x 1 x 30s each, 50lbs x 2 x 30s each
C2) Face Pull w/ External Rotation: 3 x 10 w/ 100lbs

Jan 8:
A1) Back Squat w/ 3s Negative: 135lbs x 3 x 8
A2) Front Plank: 3 x 60s
B1) Alternating DB Reverse Lunge: 2 x 65 DB x 3 x 6 each
B2) DB Swing: 1 x 15lb DB x 3 x 10
B3) SB Hamstring Curl: 3 x 12
B4) 1-Leg Squat: 3 x 8 each

Jan 9:
A1) Kettlebell Shoulder Press: 4 x 10 w/ 12kg and 16kg KB (1 in each hand)
A2) Blackburn Hold (I, Y, T): 1 x 30s each
B1) Chin-Up: 3 x 8 BW
B2) KB Swing: 3 x 8 each w/ 16kg KB
B3) Push-Up: 3 x 10 BW
B4) KB Clean-to-Curl Eccentric: 3 x 8 each w?  12kg KB
B5) Bird Dog: 3 x 6 each

The last two days weren’t exactly what I planned, but my gym closed for those two days so I had to make due with what I could at a gym in my office building and at my apartment.  All things considered, I’ll take it for a first week back.  It looks like my weight measurements will be less frequent now, but that’s fine.  I don’t anticipate losing another 10 pounds this week.  I’ll try to weigh in once a week on a reliable scale to keep monitoring my progress.  

Feel free to email me ( with any questions you may have about this.  As always, I’ll do my best to get back to you as soon as possible. 

Alright, I gotta get back to the Eagles game!  Enjoy the rest of your weekend! 

-Kevin Neeld

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