Kevin Neeld — Hockey Training, Sports Performance, & Sports Science

Off-Season Hockey Leads You to Surgery?

This was a post from Endeavor’s website that got such a great response that I wanted to share it with you.

As you know, I’ve recently teamed up with Michael Boyle (Boston University), Sean Skahan (Anaheim Ducks) and Mike Potenza (San Jose Sharks) to launch an incredible hockey training website:

Hockey Strength and Conditioning

On the site, U of Minnesota Strength Coach Cal Dietz shared an interesting article with us. The article outlined research with groundbreaking results. If you value your hockey career, you’ll read carefully!

This article outlined a study that took MRI’s of the hips of 39 NHL and NCAA Division I hockey players. Of the 39 players, twenty-one (54%) had labral tears, twelve (31%) had muscle strains, and 2 (5%) had tendinosis (degeneration of the tendon) of the hips. Overall, 70% of the players had irregular findings on their MRIs. Interestingly, the majority of these players were considered “healthy” at the time of the study, meaning they were okay to play.

As shocking as these results may appear, I wasn’t at all surprised. Similar results have been found in the shoulders of baseball players, and hockey players completely abuse their hips. Most players spend no time doing the stretches they need to (because they’re either too lazy or don’t know which ones they should do), have poor motor control of muscles around the hips (which tears up the joint and labrum!), and spend WAY too much time on the ice.

A couple weeks ago, I was on the phone with Mike Potenza (San Jose Sharks); he mentioned that in over 90% of cases, the players he sees that have sports hernias do little to nothing in terms of training. Everyone at the collegiate and professional strength and conditioning levels understand that good training can improve a player’s performance, lengthen their career, and keep them out of the surgeon’s office. Hopefully youth players and parents will get the message.

To your continued health and success,

Kevin Neeld

P.S. If you’re looking for a step-by-step training system to use this off-season, check out my Off-Ice Performance Training course. I continue to get incredible feedback about the exercises and progressions in the course, from NCAA D1 Strength and Conditioning Coaches down through parents of youth players (e.g. peewees). Download your copy today!

Off-Ice Performance Training

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Kevin Neeld

Kevin Neeld Knows Hockey

Kevin has rapidly established himself as a leader in the field of physical preparation and sports science for ice hockey. He is currently the Head Performance Coach for the Boston Bruins, where he oversees all aspects of designing and implementing the team’s performance training program, as well as monitoring the players’ performance, workload and recovery. Prior to Boston, Kevin spent 2 years as an Assistant Strength and Conditioning Coach for the San Jose Sharks after serving as the Director of Performance at Endeavor Sports Performance in Pitman, NJ. He also spent 5 years as a Strength and Conditioning Coach with USA Hockey’s Women’s Olympic Hockey Team, and has been an invited speaker at conferences hosted by the NHL, NSCA, and USA Hockey.