Usually, the things I like the most about Hockey Strength and Conditioning are the articles, programs, and exercise videos. I learn a lot by delving into what some of the top hockey training professionals in the world are doing with their athletes. I usually come away with new ideas for exercises/exercise progressions or program design strategies. As an example, our entire off-season med ball progressions were built from ideas I gathered from watching Mike Potenza’s videos.
With that in mind, Mike Boyle posted a great article this week on essential equipment to have for training hockey players. Because equipment availability lays the foundation for your programming, it was really interesting to hear what someone with Coach Boyle’s experience thinks is a “need-to-have”, “nice-to-have”, or simply a “luxury”. You can check out the article here:
Article: Need to Have Vs. Nice to Have from Michael Boyle
Contrary to the norm, the thing I benefited from the most over the last week was the forum discussions. Coach Boyle’s article stimulated a great conversation about the importance of slideboards versus cable systems that gave me some great ideas for future equipment purchases/exercise ideas.
My friend Devan McConnell started a great post on concussions and fighting that was eye opening. Because concussions, probably more than any other hockey injury, have long-lasting life-altering effects on players’ health, it’s of paramount importance to try to prevent these injuries. Darryl Nelson had a couple very insightful additions to this conversation. He’s become a forum superstar; I always look forward to hearing what he has to say.
Lastly, former BU player and current pro hockey player (Las Vegas Wranglers of the ECHL) Kevin Schaeffer posed the question as to whether anyone noticed if more of their players were starting to wear orthotics in their skates. This is a really interesting topic yesterday; I’m interested in seeing what others have to say on this as I know many of the other coaches on the site have encountered this issue at least once.
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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.