The Value of Off Ice Training
No matter how naturally talented you are on the ice, you cannot just expect to lace up the skates and dominate on game day. The best hockey players all know that training is one of, if not the most, important part of becoming a great player. That means long hours at the rink but also putting in the work off the ice as well. Here are the reasons why off-ice training is so important and some of the best ways to train away from the rink.
You Can’t Always Be on the Ice
Even if you are in an elite hockey program where your team has hours of ice time a week, there is still going to be lots of time you just are not going to be able to be skating. This does not mean your training should stop. Players who dedicate themselves to hockey specific off-ice training see their skills get better, faster than those who leave the skills practice only for the rink.
To help replicate your normal training, try practicing on specially designed hockey flooring. You can buy durable, easy to install flooring that replicates the feel of training on ice. There are Dryland Slick Tiles, which will allow you to pass and shoot with the feel of ice while training in your sneakers or inline skates. If you want to take it up another notch, you can even get Synthetic Ice which is hickey flooring you can actually skate in indoors!
You Develop Muscle Memory
In any sport, but especially in hockey with the stick skills required, muscle memory is what allows players to translate the skills they develop in practice to the game. In basketball, you take 100’s of free throws, in baseball, 100’s of swings at the plate. In hockey, you need to find an off-ice way to replicate the passing and shooting motions that will feel natural when you hit the ice in a real game.
Equipment designed specifically with hockey skills in mind will help you develop the muscle memory you need to score more goals or keep the puck glued to your stick while on the breakaway. An Ultimate Goalie Shooter Tutor will keep you hitting the corners and going 5-hole without even thinking about it. A Stickhandling Trainer will give you the form, speed, timing, eye-hand/stick coordination, precision, and consistency you need to be a world-class dangler.
You Gain Strength in Different Ways
Skating and doing hockey drills on ice conditions your body I a certain type of way. Obviously, this is very important for any hockey player. However, the players who train off the ice strengthen their bodies in different ways to create more full-body strength to give them an advantage come game time.
Training with differently weighted training tools will allow you to develop the strength needed to have more explosion or control next time you are on the ice. Just like a donut for a baseball bat, training with a Stick Weight will make you feel like you are taking a slapshot with a toothpick next time you load up from the blue line. Different types of stick handling Dangle Balls can help you in this area too. A 2oz Speed Ball will allow you to develop faster stick handling skills and an ice ball will help you keep control with your head up.
To find the best in off-ice training equipment to develop your game better and faster than the competition, check out top sellers page which features our most popular hockey training aids. Sniper’s Edge Hockey is the world's leader in ice hockey training aids and products. You can find everything you need to improve your game, score more goals, and be a better all-around player.