This is a pretty good drill with lots of passing and a 2-1 both ways. The players are NHL and European pro's waiting for the lockout to end. The coach is an ex NHL player who is an asst. at the university. He used to play for the U of Alberta when I was an asst. at the U of Calgary. They have been getting together to practice four months now. I imagine they will have a lot more jump now that the ice times are more meaningful.
Make good passes. Give a target and play with quick feet. Defense create a good gap as early as possible and forwards attack with speed. 2-1 Attack Rule: One high-one low-one fast-one slow.
1. D in diagonal corners and F diagonal blue lines. F1 and F2 skate across toward D1. The drill happens at each end.
2. D1 pass to F1 who one touches to D1.
3. D1 pass to D2 in line who returns the puck.
4. D1 pass to either F1 or F2
5. D1 skate across to defend vs. F1 and F2 who left from the other end.
6. F1-F2 attack 2-1 vs. D1 from the other end.
7. The drill goes at the same time from each end.
As soon as there is a rebound or goal the defender pick up the puck and attack the other way.
1. Coach dumps the puck in and players race for it.
2. Puck carrier try to score defender defend.
3. On rebound or goal defender attack other way.
4. Shooter must get outside of the blue line.
5. When teammate onside then first player in the line backchecks.
This is a drill from former NHL and European Pro Todd Elick.
------------------------------ C3 - Full Ice 2 on 2 F Backcheck
Players in the corners have to be ready with a puck to join the play and they have to think and the defense must communicate with the backchecker who to take. Forwards try to get scoring chances. Skating drill. Have to work hard and communicate.
1. Forwards in each corners and defensmen in the middle of the ice.
2. Drill starts with a 2 on 1.
3. Two forwards attack down the ice and the forward that shoots the puck is finished.
4. The forward who doesn't shoot turns to either corner.
5. The corner he chooses to go to the forward goes with him 2 on 2 the other way.
6. The forward in in the corner doesn't turn to has to backcheck to make it a 2 on 2.
7. Its continuous. Back and forth. Have to think. Defense has to pick up 2 on 2 both ways.
8. Do it for 5-7 minutes.
9. Kind of a hidden bag skate.
The lockout is over and the NHL players are returning to Calgary. Here they are playing a 5-5 scrimmage and the coach blows the whistle and has face-offs. Almost all of the players are NHL and a few are waiting for spots to open up in the minors or in Europe. The player in the all white with a white helmet and black pants is a pro I work with. He does very well in the drills they had the first half of practice and then played well in this scrimmage. He scored on a penalty shot vs. Kipper just before I started filming and got hit in the face with a stick just after.
I put this clip on to show how close some players who never get a chance are. The question is always; What would put them over the hump to get to the NHL.
Scoring practice includes one timers, shots from the wing and short breakaways. Players should make moves and fakes as if they are beating a checker and then shoot. Always shoot to score. Follow a pattern so the goalies know where the next shot is coming from.
1. Take one timers, shots from the wing and point shots at one end.
2. Breakaways from just above the hash marks at the other end.
3. Focus on lots of players getting shots and the goalie stopping pucks from various angles and distances instead of just one kind of shot.
Shoot while moving and hit the net. Follow shot for a rebound and then screen. Give a target and then hustle back to the lineup on the whistle.
1. Forwards in the middle and Defense at each end.
2. F1 pass to D1 who drive skates.
3. F1 and F2 get open for a breakout pass.
4. D1 pass to F1.
5. F1 pass to F2 who attacks-shoots-screens.
6. F1 spin then get a pass from the coach and shoot.
7. D1 get a pass from the coach and take a point shot or shot pass while F1 screens and F2 is ready for a shot pass.
8. Do this from both sides.
Keep skating, give a target and pass hard and pass while moving. Hit the net and follow the shot. Rebound for the next shooter.
1. All players and pucks are in the middle.
2. One player leave from each side.
3. Player 2 pass to player 1 who circles between the red and blue line.
4. Player 1 skate in and shoot after the third pass.
5. After shooting player 1 circle back and rebound for the next shooter.
6. Alternate sides and player 3 leaves after the first pass.
7. Circle left and right so shots come from both in the middle and the outside lanes.
One touch the passes and face the puck all of the time. Follow the shot for a rebound and give a target.
1. Two leave from the top of the circle.
2. Exchange puck with 2 at the dot.
3. Face the puck and exchange a second time skating to the outside of the circle.
4. Skate to the inside facing the puck and get a third pass from two and shoot.
Quick transition from offense to defense with puck protection the emphasis on offense and defensive side with the stick on the puck on defense.
1. Nets are back to back in one zone.
2. Extra players are jokers who are around the defensive net ready for a pass to go onto offense.
3. Start with 1-1 and progress up to a 3-3.
4. On transition to offense the defender pass to a joker who attacks the opposite facing net.
5. The offensive player defends when they lose the puck.
6. Keep score.
7. Add the option to pass to jokers.
8. Coach pass to non offending joker is the puck goes out of play or after a goal.
This is a great drill to practice all of the 4 Game playing roles and to teach the new attack triangle with a middle drive, how to play a 3-1 and 3-2 both on offense and defense. Keep score and make a contest out of it.
I was watching a NHL player who I coached in his Golden Years 12 and 13 covering the point on a pinch. He had to defend the 1-1 rush and got hooped. I thought to myself that we should have worked more on everyone skating backward and taking defensive situations instead of the D always defending and the F attacking.
I now have all of my players do all of the situations so they can become Total Hockey Players and I suggest the coaches who use this site do the same. The game gets more dynamic all of the time with the D joining the rush and positions interchanging. A team can only do this if the players have competence in all of the skills.
-------------------------------- C3 - Total Hockey - 3-0, 3-1, 3-2 - U18 F
Total hockey because everyone plays all positions on offense and defense. Attack with a middle drive at top speed. Hit the net and drive for rebounds. Only allow one pass in the offensive zone on the 3-0. Attack with speed and make plays early while defenders delay the attack. Description:
1. One group on each side in the neutral zone.
2. Everyone attacks and defends.
3. Play rebounds until a goal or the puck is behind the net or outside the dots.
4. Coach pass new puck if a goal is scored.
5. One defender follow the rush on 3-0 and two follow the 3-1 rush.
6. Keep score.
* Prepare all the players to play Total 1-2-3-4-5 Hockey.
Circuit training with plyometrics, strength, agility, reaction time, speed, flexibility, endurance, balance, coordination.
- Wall ladder for abdominals.
- Mats and benches for dives and rolls,
- Weights, metal hockey stick and medicine balls for resistance.
- Russian box for skating power.
- Benches and racks for weight training.
Principles: Pass while skating and then follow the pass and take the ice behind the puck carrier.. Fill the 3 lanes. Skate to the “big ice” between the dots when you get the puck. Pass to the outside lane, skate to the inside lane.
A. 1 pass to 2 and follow the pass.
B. 2 skate to the big ice, pass to 3, follow the pass taking the ice behind.
C. 3 pass back to one, follow the pass.
D. 1 regroup with 4 and 1-2-3 fill each lane.
E. 4 pass to 1 or 3 on the strong side.
F. 1-2-3 weave the same way and attack with a triangle and shoot at the oringinal end.
G. 4-5-6 follow and repeat the other way.
The main goal of this shootout is for the goalies to battle and never give up on shots. It is more realistic if only one pass per shot is allowed but if the goal is for the goalie to battle put no restrictions on the shooters.
1. Half the team in each box and as many pucks on the blue line as the number of the largest team.
2. Two players leave from the box, get a puck from the blue line and shoot until they score.
3. After scoring race back and touch the player box gate so the next two can leave.
4. First team to score all the pucks wins.
5. Losers do a chore or exercise.
D5 Keepaway Contests to Practice Skills and Good Habits
All 4 Game playing roles are practiced. Have rules like, only forehand passes, only backhand, an escape move before passing, 3 hard strides, one touch, 2 " only, all skate backward, hold the stick with only one hand, saucer passes. 5 or 7 passes = 1 point.
1. Groups have an area of the rink or else one group at at time has so many seconds to make as many passes as possible.
2.Good activity to warm up with if the goalies are working with a coach.
3. Use rules that include skating, passing skills, puck handling skills such as pivots.
4. Practice good habits like taking 3 hard strides when you get the puck or pass and get open.
5. Keep score and switch opponents. I point for every 5-7 passes.
Practice the 4 Game Playing Roles.
1 - Player with the puck.
2 - Player supporting the puck carrier.
3 - Player checking the puck carrier.
4 - Player covering away from the puck.
1. Play from 1-1 to 5-5.
2. Passes to the jokers on the side are allowed.
3. Jokers may pass or shoot.
4. Pass to a Joker on the whistle.
5. New players skate behind their net on a change.
a. Send out uneven teams.
b. Give and go with a Joker who can join the game to either even the teams or add up to a designated number of players.
7. Keep score and use short shifts.
The head coach is Petr Svoboda who played for Tonronto for a few years until he had to quit because of health problems. He was the only english speaking coach in Jihlava, Czech Republic when I did a camp there in 2010. They offered me a job to be coach mentor and work as asst. coach with Petr on the U20 team. Petr now is the coach mentor there and coaches one of their youth teams. He will be a certified coach soon and able to coach pro or any other level in the Czech Republic. When I did the camp I would go over everything with Petr and then he would explain it to the coaches and players in Czech.
------------------------------------------------- C3 Continuous Backcheck 3-3 Czech U17
Attack with speed. Defenseman communicate who the forwards should cover. Quickly change from offense to defense. Tie up sticks in the slot. D join the rush.
1. Start with BF1, BF2, BD1 in defensive position.
2. RD1 skate between dots to the big us and pass to RF1 or RF2 and follow the attack.
3. Blue players F1-F2-D1 defend the 3-3 rush.
4. Coach whistle when rush finished.
5. D2 start a new attack the other way while original attacker Red F1-F2-D1 defend.
6. Continue this 3-3 flow end to end.
** This flow can be continued in a one puck transition game with no whistles starting with passive then active support.
This is very similar to the previous drill but it is a transition game which uses only one puck and the flow continues without whistles. This requires the teams to play the low 3-3 and the defenders to make a breakout pass. It also frees the coach to talk with the players instead of being like a traffic cop blowing whistles. Players also are more engaged and have to make decisions.
Transition games are NOT used by very many coaches but are the next advancement in running more effective and efficient practices.
------------------------------------------------------------------- DT100 Continuous 3-3 With Passive Support
New players give passive support above the circles but can take the puck if it is loose or the offense cycles too high, just like a F covering the point would. The key for the offense is to quickly attack and the defenders to communicate on coverage.
1. Players line up in the neutral zone with D on one side and F on the other.
2. Begin with a 3-3. Two RF and one RD attack vs. opposition two BF one BD.
3. Defending team has two BF follow and support from the top of the circles.
4. Attacking team have one RD support from the blue line.
5. On a frozen puck, goal or take away the defenders pass to one of the BF above the circles.
6. Attack 2-1 vs. the R defenseman.
7. Original two RF backcheck and original BD join the 2 F on the attack.
8. Original two RF return to the line-up.
9. Play 3-3 in the zone.
10. Two new RF from defending team and one BD from attacking team give passive support after the puck enters the offensive zone.
11. Continue this flow.
Technique practice. Stick is square to the puck, hands relaxed. Make good hard and flat passes. The puck rotates toward the end of the blade.
1. Partners work on passing in various areas of the ice.
2. Use wrist passes.
3. Load and fire: wind up, produce force, release, follow through at the target.
4. Forehand, backhand and saucer passing technique can be practiced in the same way.
If you expect good performance in games then you must pay attention to technique details.
*Goalies warm up with crease skating.
When teaching team play sometimes the coach has the opposition D pass all the way to the other D in order to simulate a turn over, so the players go from thinking forecheck to getting back to support a regroup. The Finn Jalonen did the same thing off a low zone face-off in another drill to simulate a turnover where the players had to get onside and regroup in the neutral zone before attacking.
----------------------------------------------------- C300 - Breakout, Double Regroup 5-2 Back Hard - Pro
Do everything at full speed. Get to the big ice and pass wide. Face the puck always and give a target. D must read where the forecheck pressure comes from. Attack with 4 in the scoring area.
1. Extra players wait on the bench.
2. Dump the puck in and either two coaches or extra players forecheck.
3. Blue D go breakout with Blue Forwards then forecheckers leave.
4. Blue forwards pass to Red D in the neutral zone.
5. Red D regroup and pass to the Blue D.
6. Blue D hinge and regroup with the Blue Forwards.
7. Blues attack 5-2 vs. Red D with one D joining the rush.
8. Race back to the middle circle on the whistle.
Give a target and face the puck. Pass hard and lead the player so he doesn’t have to slow down. Shoot and rebound and either screen or rebound for the next shooter. Stay onside on the 2-0.
1. Players face each other across the neutral zone lined up with the dots.
2. Start with R1 passing ahead to B2 who passes over to B3. This pattern happens with B1 to R2 to R3 at the same time.
A. B3 make a cross ice pass to R1 who faces the play on the far wing and goes in for a shot.
B. R3 pass to B1 who mirrors the puck from the middle lane and goes wide for a shot.
C. R3 pass to R1 who mirrors the puck from the middle lane - attack wide. R2 join attack after passing across.
Move into a shooting lane and keep the eyes up so you know where the defenders are. Miss the defender coming to the block.
a. 1 pass to 2 and 2 pass back to 1.
b. 1 pass to 3 and 3 pass back to 1.
c. 1 pivot and pass back to 3.
f. 3 skate to mid point and shoot and 1 screen.
h. Rotate 1 go to point and 3 leave, 2 move to shooting point and repeat sequence with 4 passing to 1.
Sequence of Shots:
1. Shoot to score.
2. Shoot for a rebound.
3. Shot pass.
4. Shoot wide for a rebound off the boards.
Lately I have been working on putting the site into a consistent format and making sure the pdf's have diagrams and video links and the videos are in the proper place and have diagrams and descriptions in the Daily Drill section. These skating videos are excellent and have been mentioned before but I want to put them together. They are an excellent resource for both beginner and advanced skating.
------------------------------------------ A - Skating Programs from Finland and Minnesota
This is a four part series of skating instruction from Finland. It is an excellent resource.
The defender make a pass and jump into the play right away. The new defender has to realize that it is a late developing 2-1 and the attackers must make a play early before the defenders get support.
a. Start with #2 attacking vs #1.
b. #3 support on defense and #4 support the attack.
c. After a goal or a defensive breakout #3 attack vs #4.
d. The original defender #1 join the attack (#2 return to the lineup when the puck crosses the blue line.) This creates a 2-1 in the neutral zone.
e. #5 and 6 join the play after the attack crosses the blue line and actively play a 3-2. #6 play the offensive point position.
f. After a goal or breakout continue the flow with 5 vs 6 and 4 joining the rush.
You can run this game with all players playing F and D or if you have D joining the F could line up on one side and the D on the other side in the nzone.
Starting with a 2-1 and two players supporting the D and one the attack would make a 3-3 on the original attack and a 3-1 in the nzone and a 4-3 in the offensive zone.
Starting with a 2-2 attack and the offense getting support from 2 D and the defense from 2 F it would make a 4-4 on the original attack. One D joining the rush makes a 3-2 in the nzone and a 5-4 at each end. (D stay up on the attack)
Supporting players play like wingers at the top of the circles. Give targets, face the puck and make all plays while skating. Create a 2-1 vs. the widest defender.
Description:1. R1-R2 attack vs. B1-B2.
2. B3-B4 support at the top of the circles.
3. Goal, frozen puck or transition B1- or B2 pas to either B3 or B4.
4. B3 and B4 skate over the red line and then regroup with either B1 or B2.
5. B1-B2 hinge and pass to B3 or B4.
6. R3-R4 attack vs R1-R2.
7. Continue this flow with R3 and R4 supporting at the top of the circles.
MIke Johnston a former university, major junior head coach and NHL asst. coach does a great job in an on ice demonstration of using games to teach the game. It was at a coach seminar in Vienna. I coached one season with Mike as assistants at the U of Calgary and we were both head coaches in a men's college hockey league before that.
This is such an important exercise to learn how to separate the movement of the upper and lower body as well as incorporate head and shoulder fakes. Most North Americans generally are very stiff in the upper body. Two IIHF Hall of Fame coaches, Juhani Wahlsten of Finland and Vladimir Yursinov of Russia were running the hockey school in Finland in this video. They had Yashin, who had just been the NHL player of the year demonstrating the exercises. Later in the video Finnish coaches lead young players.
If you are going to add anything from this site to your practices these exercises should be done all of the time in all levels. When I was coaching in Austria Yursinov came one week per month and led the pro's in these exercises during the morning skill sessions. There are videos on this site with showing leading some of the practices.
----------------------------------------------------------------- A200 Big Moves _ Russian Warm-up
Increase the size of the moves by reaching as far as possible with the puck. Separate the movement of the upper and lower body by skating away from the puck. Players must be able to handle the puck under control around and through their body.
- Skate away from the puck. Skate right reach left and skate left and reach right. - Reach as far forward and back as you can using the top hand.
-Put the puck from the stick to inside and outside edges back to the stick.
-Move puck from behind to front through skate forehand and backhand.
-Escape moves backward with the puck and tight turns each way.
-Fake a shot and go left then right. Spin on backhand.
-Touch each knee while skating. - Yo-yo the puck give it and take it away. - Toe drag fake inside and pull the puck back while sliding back. - Bring the puck from behind to in front through the skates on forehand. - Bring the puck from behind to in front through the skates on backhand. - Skate fake inside and go outside.
Attack with speed and create a gap by turning back and then up. Defenders must mirror the attackers to maintain a tight gap. Only use the 1-1 to teach the technique and the flow and then move to larger numbers to achieve a good work/rest ratio. 1-1 could be done on both sides and ten full ice for a 2-2 and up.
1. R1-R2 attack vs. B1-B2.
2. R3-R4 support when the puck crosses the red line.
3. R1-R2 cut back before crossing the blue line and B1-B2 keep a tight gap.
4. R3-R4 can shoot or pass within 1" but not go in deep. R1-R2 play low 2-2.
5. On transition B1-B2 attack R3-R4 and repeat sequence.
6. B3-B4 support from the line-up.
A. R1-R2 regroup with R3-R4.
B. Vary the situations with between 1 and 3 players supporting from the line-up.
First player skate at full speed with the puck. Pass hard and give a target for the return pass. Hit the net and follow the shot for a rebound. Keep the head up all of the time. Players leave on their own when the player in front crosses the far blue line.
1. Leave with a puck from diagonal corners.
2. Transition skate hard around the face-off dot back to the blue line and up to the red line.
3. Stop at the red line.
4. Around the bottom of the circle while facing the far end.
5. Pass to 2 on the goal line and get a return pass.
7. Follow the shot for a rebound.
8. Skate to the goal line to give and go with the next attacker.