Simple Hockey Training Trick with a Large On-Ice Impact

I remember hearing Michael Boyle talk about how he had Cam Neely step on a scale with his equipment on and how surprised he was about how much weight the equipment added.

With over 15 years of experience playing hockey, you’d think I would have picked up on this on my own. From time to time something like this comes along to remind me how smart I’m not. Coach Boyle noted that hockey equipment can add around 20 pounds.

Is it any wonder why so many hockey players train so hard off the ice, then still feel drained the first time they’re on the ice?

Of course, part of that is because of the unique pattern of ice skating. In my opinion, the majority of this horrible feeling of fatigue is due to the extra weight.

The simple solution? Progress to adding a weight vest on your athletes while they condition. An example of a progression could be as basic as: 4 weeks of body weight conditioning; 4 weeks of training with a 10 lb weight vest on; 4 weeks of training with a 20 lb (or two 10 lb) weight vest. If you’re feeling really innovative, condition them with their helmets on too, as the helmet will affect the way heat escapes the body.

Simple, yet effective. That’s the name of the game.

– Kevin Neeld

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