Training for hockey is arguably more important than the games themselves. Of course, the games are important in their own way. Without playing games against other teams you don’t get a chance to show off your skills while in a competitive atmosphere. That being said, a car with no gas won’t drive and a hockey player without hockey training won’t be able to shine nearly as brightly on the rink. Everyone from beginners to the best players in the world needs their training so they can be sure that they’re always giving their absolute best.
There are a lot of elements to the training that you need for hockey. Endurance, speed, strength, reaction time, stickhandling, maneuvering on the ice, strategy, the list goes on. A well-rounded hockey player needs all of these in order to be the best hockey player that they can be and the best way to improve all of these skills is to practice them both on and off the ice. But why might you need to up your training game? Increasing the intensity of your training might seem a little outlandish, but let’s delve deeper into this question so you can leave this article with a satisfactory answer.
Get the Edge on Your Opposition
There are few things that can be broken down into simple fundamentals, and hockey happens to be one of those things. Hockey is about the competition between players. The blood, sweat, and tears that hockey players pour into their training on a daily basis shows when they’re on the rink and fighting to see which team will come out on top. Do you know who’s definitely taking their training very seriously? The teams that you’re going up against. Their team also comes to the rink with the intention of taking home the victory.
Every hockey team is hungry for a win. Starving for a win, even. Your team is the only thing that stands between them and the thing that they want, so they will run you ragged to make sure that they claim the victory that they so desire. That means that they need to train hard, long hours to make sure that they have the biggest edge possible against your team when it comes time to be on the court. It doesn’t matter if your team is the best in your league or the worst, another team is gunning for you.
With that in mind, making sure that your team is ready for any challenges that come its way is incredibly important. Your team has to want the win more than the other, and the best way to express that desire is for your team to be stronger, faster, and more agile than the other team. This goal can be met with some intensive training. While you probably won’t see results immediately, you can rest easy knowing that training pays off in time, and eventually if your entire team sticks to a good training regimen that you’ll see results.
Let’s say it’s the first game of the season. You’re going against a team that has spent the rest of the year training, but your team is mostly a little rusty. The puck drops onto the rink with a satisfying thud, and the game begins. Your opponent immediately takes control of the puck because they have a faster reaction time than you. Their team works like a well-oiled machine, and yours, well, doesn’t. All of their plays are immaculate and your team can’t seem to get its act together enough to take control of the game.
Ultimately, the more well-trained team is likely to win here. Your team could hope for a miracle. Maybe your coach gives one of those dramatic speeches in the locker room like they do in the sports films and your team makes a fourth-quarter comeback. This is entirely possible, there have been bigger upsets in the history of hockey, but unfortunately, sometimes nothing short of a miracle can change the tides of a game. This is especially true when the other team is more well trained than your own. Odds are, in this situation your team will be defeated in a spectacular show of force from your opponents.
The only way to be sure that your team has a chance against this hypothetical team is to make sure that you’re training year-round and working on your weaknesses. Who knows, if all of the proper training is done, your team could end up being this hypothetical team that put their money where their mouth is so they could take home a victory. Either way, training is critical for taking home the gold time and time again, and regardless of what your team does, your opposition is training to take you down.
Build Up Teamwork
Teamwork is absolutely just as important as being strong or fast. Your team could be entirely made up of strongmen with lifelong affinities for figure skating but without teamwork, all of those skills can be made useless by a team with a good plan. When your team steps onto the ice, they have to be able to trust and quickly communicate with their teammates without any verbal cues. That can be pretty hard if your team hasn’t worked on their teamwork skills, and if your opponent shows better teamwork, there’s a good chance that your team will lose.
Building up the trust and coordination between yourself and the rest of your team is the best way to remedy this. Your team needs to work as well together as your opposing team does, if not even better. That will help your team avoid any weird miscommunications on the ice that could cost you the game, possibly even the season depending on the importance of said game. If you watch professional hockey or even college hockey, you’ve probably seen just how much this coordination matters, and how easily a lack of coordination between players can hurt a team’s odds of winning.
The last thing that you want is for your team to have two left feet. You want to control the tempo of the game so you can plow through the opposition and take your rightful place as the victors. In some cases, superior teamwork can even outweigh an opposing team’s superior skill. All the muscle and speed in the world won’t make a difference if a team doesn’t know how to work together as a single unit and get past their opponent’s defenses. A hard-fought victory requires all hands on deck, and even then you’ll still have a lot of hard work to do.
Become Happier with Your Skills
Winning is nice. Some people might even say that it’s better than nice. Some people even go so far as to follow Ricky Bobby’s philosophy of “if you’re not first, you’re last.” and that’s totally fine. Regardless of if you are able to ascertain some value in yourself by winning game after game or all you need is to feel like you’re improving, hockey training can help you with that. In fact, training works better when you have a goal in mind, both in the long term and in the short term.
If your own personal improvement is what makes you feel better about yourself, training will definitely be able to help get you there, even more easily than winning games. Training both your weaknesses and your strengths will, in time, allow you to reach your potential as a hockey player. Knowing your weaknesses is a great thing because it allows you to play towards your strengths, but in hockey, you have the opportunity to train your weaknesses so you can work on becoming a more rounded hockey player and a bigger overall threat on the ice.
On top of that, training will help sculpt your body and that can help you feel more confident in life. Whether you’re talking to a cutie out in the world or you’re applying for a job, having a body that you’re happy with can help you have the confidence you need to know success. Training can also have incredible health benefits if done correctly, and that can help you live a long, happy life while consistently impressing your doctor with a steady clean bill of health. All of these things are incredibly good benefits of training that can last you a lifetime.
Step Up Your Training
As we all know, training is important. Good training can help you snatch victory from the jaws of defeat, but a lack of it can cause your team to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory. Every team in your league is looking to be ranked number one this season, and most of them are willing to do just about whatever it takes to make sure that they outshine your team. That means that you’ll need to work harder and smarter than them to ensure that you can rise to the top and overcome any obstacle in your path.