By: TomM (offline)  Thursday, February 04 2016 @ 04:16 PM GMT  

B4 - D Pass x 3 Point Shot – Pro

Key Points:

Pass while skating, give a target, shoot, rebound, screen and tip. Forward time the skating to be open when the D can pass.


Players leave from the middle circle and the pucks are just above the top of the circle.

1. D1 on each side get a puck from the coach.
2. F1's stretch to the blue line and F2 swing lower down the middle.
3. D1’s pass to F1’s at the far blue line.
4. F1's touch pass back to F2's who skate in, shoot, rebound, screen.
5. D1’s get another puck and pass to F3 cutting across the middle; F3’s shoot.
6. D1’s get another puck and pass to F1 who has circled back to the far wing.
7. F1’s shoot then get a puck from the corner to pass to D1.
8. D1’s follow F1 and take the pass then drag and shoot.
9. F1-F2-F3 spread across in front to screen, one time or tip a shot pass.

* F1 can also pass then cycle high and down the middle. (Click on subscribe to have access to over 400 pro drills.)

'The Game is the Greatest Coach'
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By: TomM (offline)  Friday, February 05 2016 @ 04:59 PM GMT  

T2 - Power Play BO-RG Sequence – Pro

Key Points:

Time the skating to be available for a pass. Move the puck up ice quickly. Be there for the touch back on the stretch pass. Enter the zone and pass back to the D on the boards. Support from all three lanes on the regroup. Any power play option can be worked on this way.


1. Power play unit breakout a puck dumped in by the coach.
2. D1 go back for the puck.
3. F1 swing to D1's forehand corner D2 other corner.
4. F2 either swing low with F1 or come across the high slot.
5. F3 stretch at the far blue line and cut across to get open or post up to touch back.
6. Move the puck up quickly and cross the blue line past the top of the circle.
7. Kick the puck back to the strong side D and set up the power play.
8. Create one scoring chance and coach blow the whistle.
9. Do a second breakout using a different pass option.
10. On the second rep first do a breakout-attack then a regroup-attack.
11. Coach spot a new puck near the far blue line for the regroup.
12. Each group of five do two breakouts then the breakout-regroup rep. (Click on subscribe to have access to over 400 pro drills.)

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By: TomM (offline)  Saturday, February 06 2016 @ 08:56 PM GMT  

ABC of International Hockey Dropbox Links to PDF.s and Videos

The first link is to the pdf.s and the second link takes you to the videos.

A – Individual Offensive Skills

B – Parnter and Team Skills vs. Zero Opposition

C – Game Situation Drills 1-1 to 5-5

D – Games: Small Area and Full Ice

DT – Transition Games: Game situations using only one puck.

E - Shootouts and Contests

F - On Ice Conditioning


T – Teaching the Four Game Playing Roles:
1. T1-Ind. Offensive Skills
2. T2-Team Offensive Skills
3. T3-Individual Defensive Skills
4. T4-Team Defensive Skills

ABC Coding Explanation

Practice Plan Template

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By: TomM (offline)  Sunday, February 07 2016 @ 04:07 PM GMT  

ABC's of International Hockey Curriculum: Progressive Scope and Sequence

I have just posted a ridiculous amount of coaching ideas that can be used from beginners to pro. You have to decide which exercises or games are best for your level. Ability is more important than age. Too easy bores and too difficult frustrates.

ABC of International Hockey Dropbox Links to PDF.s and Videos

Suggested Progression:

Beginners-First Two Years of Hockey
A - Introduction to skating, puck handling, shooting.
D - Games mostly SAG.
E - Shootouts and contest.
O - Off-ice should be playing many games to develop athleticism and split vision as well as tumbling.

Third and Fourth Year
A - Skating, shoot, puck handle.
B - Introductory passing.
C - Situation drills. Mostly 1-1, 2-1
D - Games mostly SAG.
E - Shootouts and contests.
G - Goalie basics.
O - Off-ice should be playing many games to develop athleticism and split vision as well as tumbling and games that require decision making. Focus on health related fitness, muscle strength, muscle endurance, cardiovascular fitness, ideal % of body fat, flexibility and continue this at every level.

Fifth and Sixth Year
A - Skating, shoot, puck handle.
B - Passing and partner work.
C - Situation drills 1-1 to 3-3.
D - Games mostly SAG but also full ice scrimmage with rules.
DT - Introduce transition games.
E - Shootouts and contests.
G - Goalie basics crease movement, angles.
T1-T3 - Work on introductory individual offensive and defensive technique.
T2-4 - Introduce team play, breakouts, dzone coverage, forecheck, all based on 1-2-3-4-5 read and react.
O - Off-ice should be playing many games to develop athleticism and split vision as well as tumbling for body awareness and games that require decision making, introduce combatives like wrestling.

Year Seven and Eight

A - Skating, shoot, puck handle.
B - Passing and timing, partner practice ind. offensive and defensive skills.
C - Situation drills 1-1 to 5-5.
D - Games SAG and full ice team play scrimmage.
DT - Transition games.
E - Shootouts and contests.
G - Goalie training.
T1-T3 - Work on individual offensive and defensive technique.
T2-4 - Team play based on 1-2-3-4-5 and power play - penalty killing.
O - Off-ice should be playing many games to develop athleticism and split vision as well as tumbling for body awareness and games that require decision making, combatives like wrestling, competitions that separate the upper and lower body.

Year Nine and Ten (Conventional Wisdom is that it takes ten years to become really proficient at anything and my experience is that this is a true statement.)
A - Skating, shoot, puck handle.
B - Passing and timing, partner practice ind. offensive and defensive skills.
C - Situation drills 1-1 to 5-5.
D - Games SAG and full ice team play scrimmage.
DT - Transition games.
E - Shootouts and contests.
F - Quickness and agility skating.
G - Goalie training
T1-T3 - Work on individual offensive and defensive technique.
T2-4 - Team play based on 1-2-3-4-5 and power play - penalty killing.
O - Off-ice - many sports, begin core training, work on speed, agility, coordination, reaction time and power. Do circuits that use light weights, heavy sticks, Russian Box, competitions that separate the upper and lower body.

Year Eleven and Up
All of the training but learn to do everything at top speed, eliminate extra movement for efficiency. Become a player with 270 degree vision and 360 degree skills. The A and B drills are used for warm-up.

Creating a Practice Plan to Share with Your Team

I use the TC Whiteboard planning template, which is a doc. file. It enables me to copy and paste descriptions and diagrams from the pdf.s.

Practice Planning Template – TC Whiteboard (sample practice for U18 girl's is attached at the bottom)

Flow of a practice.

Have a Practice Theme with a Learning Progression.

Rotate practice themes between Game Playing Roles: (based on the stage of development as outlined above)
1 - Individual offensive skill.
2 - Team offensive skill.
3 - Individual defensive skill.
4 - Team defensive skill.

- Off-ice dynamic warm-up before practice. No static stretching on the ice at the start of practice as static stretching relaxes the muscles. This should be done off ice after practice.

- Skating edges, balance, puck control to activate both the muscles and nervous system using drills or games.

- Drills to practice the skill.

- Put the lesson learned into a game situation.

- End practice with a shoot-out or contest that goes with the practice theme.

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By: TomM (offline)  Monday, February 08 2016 @ 02:19 PM GMT  

This is the curriculum Juhani Wahlsten and I produced for Austrian Ice Hockey. All the material posted on this site is meant to constantly update the material.

The major obstacle in most sports is that there is no consistent curriculum with a 'scope and sequence' to develop the skills, habits and game understanding to be effective players. Juhani Wahlsten and I developed this sequential program (with lots of input from the great Russian coach Vladimir Jursinov and Finnish Olympic coach Erkka Westerlund) and put it together for the Austrian Hockey Association and as a supplement to the program in Finland. The idea of this site is to continually update the material as the game changes and new practice and team play ideas are developed. Below is the original program plus links to pdf's with hundreds of new drills, games and team play ideas from all over the hockey world.

The two themes of our ABC's of International Hockey program are:

'Enjoy the Game"

"The Game is the Greatest Coach"

The entire curriculum was developed with these two themes in the forefront.

The ABC's of International Hockey Curriculum - Beginner to Pro

ABC's of International Hockey Level 0-1

To supplement Level 0-1 these levels take drills and games coded: A1, A2, A200, B1, D2, D200, D3, D300, D4, D400, D5, D500, E1. From the Dropbox link below.

Hockey Coaching ABC Level Two

To supplement Level 2 add drills and games coded: A2, A200, B2, B200, B3, B300, B4, D1, D100, D2, D200, D3, D300, D4, D400, E1, G.

Hockey Coaching ABC Level Three

To supplement Level Three use A2, A200, A3, A300, for review, B1, B2, B200, B3, B300, B4, B400, B5, B500, B6, B600, B7, C1, C2, C3 all of the D Games, E1 all of the shoot-outs, G.

ABC's of International Hockey Coaching ABC Level Four

Supplement Level 4 with A200, B3, B300, B4, B5, B500, B400, B6, B600, C2, C3, C6, C600, D1, D100, D2, D200, D4, D400, T1, T2, T3, T4, E1, F, G.

ABC’s of International Hockey Advanced Levels 5-6

ABC Transition Book Levels 5 and 6

Levels 5-6 focus on transition, advanced drills and team play. All of the DT transition games, B6, B600, B200, B202, C6, C600, D100, T1, T2, T3, T4, T1-3, T2-4, E1, F, G, O.

Additional drills and games and all of the T1-T2-T3-T4 drills and games are in the dropbox.

As you move through the levels into the more difficult material the beginning levels are used for warm-up and review.

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By: TomM (offline)  Thursday, February 11 2016 @ 03:00 PM GMT  

T2-4 Low 3-3 – Pro

Key Points:

Players line up at the top of the circles and play a low 3 on 3. Defender pass to the coach if they get the puck. You can break into two groups and have all of the players attack and defend.


1. Three forwards vs. two D and one F.
2. Start with the coach passing to one of the attacking forwards.
3. Defenders cover one attacker each and stay on the defensive side.
4. Closest defender be aggressive and have ‘stick on the puck and body on body’ positioning on F1.
5. Second closest be within a stick length of the second attacker F2.
6. Third closest be half way to their F3 and pressure if he gets a pass.
7. Return to the mid-slot if you lose your man.
8. Attackers cycle and change the point of attack by passing behind the net.
9. Attackers rotate so there is always a high F3 ready to shoot or backcheck.

* D1 make the original challenge when the puck is in the corner.

* F1 defend if the puck is at the hash or high slot and D2 start from the slot. (Subscribe for access to hundreds of hockey drills)

The progression for 3 on 3 principles practice in this drill transfer to any 3 on 3 SAG or a full ice scrimmage. i.e. Quick transition game of 3 on 3.

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By: TomM (offline)  Friday, February 12 2016 @ 03:48 PM GMT  

C3 - RG 2-0 RG 2-1 – Pro

Key Points:

Pass while skating. Give a target. Game like support with one forward in the middle lane and one in the strong side lane and don’t cross. One touch pass as much as possible. Forwards finish the attack and work to score a goal.


1. Forwards wait on each side inside the blue line and D on one side in the middle.
2. F1-F2 leave from one end and regroup with D1 at one blue line.
3. F1-F2 regroup with D2 at the opposite blue line.
4. F1-F2 continue down the ice and attack 2-0 until a goal or frozen puck.
5. F3-F4 leave from the other end and regroup with D2 then F3-F4 regroup with D1.
6. F3-F4 attack 2-1 vs. D2.
7. F5-F6, F7-F8 repeat with D3-D4.

* This sequence can be done with 1-3 F’s and 1 or 2 D.

* Make one or two touch passes and one touch shots. Shoot to score and get the rebounds. (Subscribe to access more pro drills)

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By: TomM (offline)  Tuesday, February 16 2016 @ 02:41 AM GMT  

B600 - Red-Blue-Red-Blue-Pass-Shoot - Czech U20

Key Points:

Give a target, shoot and follow the shot for a rebound, shoot to score, shoot where the goalie ain’t, shoot where the goalie is coming from and not where he is going.


A. 1 and 3 leave from diagonal blue lines and skate to the red line and back.
B. 1 and 3 skate forward around the middle circle and get a pass from 2 and 4.
C. 5 and 7 leave, skate up, back around and get passes from 6 and 8.
D. Shoot, follow the shot for a rebound and then rebound for the next shooter.

* Progression is to give and go with the next shooter or defend and play a 1 on 1. (Click subscribe for about 100 drills done by Czech teams.)

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By: TomM (offline)  Tuesday, February 16 2016 @ 04:47 PM GMT  

T1 - B2 - D to D and Shot Routine - Russian U20

Key Points:

Practice skating along the line and shoot with one timers or quick shots.


1. Coaches pass to the D on either side.
2. D pair take 4 shots
3. Start D1 skate inside the dots and pass to D2 who shoots while moving, D2 repeat to D1.
4. D1 next skate inside the dots and pass to D2 who continues skating and pass back to D1 who shoots.
5. Repeat coach-D2-D1-D2 and shoot from the middle.
6. Second sequence is cross and switch sides then a one timer shot.
7. Coach to D1 who skates to the other side and D2 skate behind to switch sides.
8. D1 pass to D2 who shoots from the mid-point if he is on his off-wing.
9. D2 pass back to D1 who shoots from the top of the circle if only D1 can take a one timer shot.

* If there are no coaches to pass then put pucks inside the blue line on both sides. (Subscribe to Russian drills)

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By: TomM (offline)  Thursday, February 18 2016 @ 05:35 PM GMT  

T2-4 - D400 -Low 2-2 – 3-3 - Czech U20

Key Points:

Defenders communicate and keep their head on a swivel to always know where their man and the puck are. Play from the defensive side with the stick on the puck and body on body. The closest defender be in contact with the attacker and the second man within a stick length. On the 3-3 the third defender be halfway to the third attacker. Attackers fight to get on the offensive side and create 2-1’s.


1. Players wait for their turn above the circles.
2. Start with F1 in the corner with the puck and F2 below the goal line on the far side.
3. D1 faces F1 in the corner and D2 is in front of the net.
4. Play a 2-2 below the circles for about 20”.
5. Switch to 3-3 with F1 again starting in the corner, F2 in front and F3 in the high slot.
6. Defend man on man.
7. Closest defender tight on the puck carrier, second closest within a stick length and third halfway.
8. Defend from the net side, stick on the puck and body on body.
9. Box out and control the stick in front of the net.
10. Attackers create 2-1’s, use give and go passes, protect the puck.
11. Pass behind the net to change the point of attack. (Subscribe to Czech drill videos)

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By: TomM (offline)  Friday, February 19 2016 @ 04:01 PM GMT  

T2-4 - PP vs Passive PK - PP vs Active PK

Key Points:

Move the puck quickly and go to the net for shots. Defenders challenge the attack when there is no full control. Sticks in the passing lanes.


1. Black on power play vs. Red Defenders.
2. First do a breakout while the pk waits in the zone with sticks upside down.
3. Goal, frozen puck the coach whistles and the puck is dumped down and the PP break out vs. the pk forecheck and active defense in the zone.

Every unit of 5 repeat.

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By: TomM (offline)  Tuesday, February 23 2016 @ 04:49 PM GMT  

B600 2 x One Touch and Stretch Pass - Pro W

Key Points:

Skate while passing and give a target. Time skating to stay onside and accelerate when you get the puck.


A. 1 and 3 leave from diagonal blue lines, exchange passes with 2 and 4.
B. 2 and 4 pass up the boards to 5 and 7 while 1 and 3 skate for a stretch pass.
C. 5 pass to 1 and 7 pass to 3 who shoot. 2 and 4 repeat.

* Rebound, exchange passes or defend 1-1 with the next shooter.

B600 2 x One Touch and Stretch Pass - Pro W (Subscribe to Female drills)

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By: TomM (offline)  Wednesday, February 24 2016 @ 02:12 PM GMT  

Practice Ideas: Slovakia, Sweden, Canada, U15 Boy’s, Switzerland, Denmark

A300 Walk Outs and Walk Ins - Sweden U20

B2 Point Shots - Canada U20

B202 One Touch 2-0 Sweden U20 A

B202 One Touch 2-0 Sweden U20 B

B202 One Touch x 2 Outlet Pass Shoot-Sweden U20

B202 Pass and Shoot Options-Sweden U20

B202 Passing options - Sweden U20

B500 5 vs 2 Coaches - Canada U20

B600 2-0 Passing Options - Swiss U20

B600 Breakout 3-0 with 2F 1D - Point shot-Canada U20

B600-2x2 Shots - Swiss U20

C1-B600 1-1 - Slovakia U20

C1-C3 Double Regroup 2-1 - Danish U20

C2 5-0 BO, RG x 2, 5-2 - U15 Boy's

C2 PPlay Breakout 5-0 - Slovakia U20

C3 Continuous 3-2 - Danish U20

C3 Regroup 2-1 Regroup 3-2 Swiss U20

C6 - 2-1 With Back Pressure - U20

D1 Three Line Continuous Game – U15 Boy’s

D4 Active Jokers at Point Must Shoot-U15

D4 Two Pass - Swiss U20

D4 Two Pass – U15 Boy’s

D200 3 on 3 Swiss U20

DT400 2-2 Regroup and RG x 2 Passive Support - U15 Boy’s

DT400 Quick Transition Game U15

DT400 Two Net Game - RG with Jokers - U15

DT500 Nets Back to Back - One Goalie U15

E1–D4 One Touch 4 on 2 – U15

E100 Change on the Go Shootout - Swiss U20

O - Sled Push - U15

T1 - DT400 – 3-0, 3-1, 3-2, 4-2 Puck Support Sequence – U15 Boy’s

T1- B5 - Rim-Tight Turn-Shoot - U20

T2 - D to D Breakout Options - U20

T2 5 vs 2 Coaches - Canada U20

T2-4 - D100 - 3-0 - 3-2 with BC - U20

T2-4 - D100 - 5-0 - Point Shots x 2 - Turnover in NZ - 5-5 - U20

T2-4 - D100 - BO-RG-Attack 5-5 - U20

T3-4 King-Kozak Defensive Zone - U15 Boy's

U15 Off-ice Conditioning

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By: TomM (offline)  Thursday, February 25 2016 @ 05:23 PM GMT  

Fire U18 F Practice Plans

Two weeks ago I was asked to take over coaching the U18 F AAA team in Calgary. We have had 7 practices and 3 games so far. My coaching staff includes gold medal winner Haley Irwin, former national U22 team player Jessica Wong and mentor Wally Kozak.

Practice plans are in my dropbox.

We use the Technicoach template and cut and paste from the pdf.s of practice ideas. It is a good way to keep a record of what you have done during the season.

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By: Anonymous: smac ()  Thursday, February 25 2016 @ 06:57 PM GMT  

Midget Girl's AAA

The U18 AAA girl's team I just took over to finish the season coaching has talent and on the trip to Edmonton yesterday I met with every player to meet them and go over how we play. The MAAA girl's pick up team play quicker than boy's. They can skate just as well, pass better, don't shoot as hard. So coaching is coaching. It is the same game. If we can become a Team we have the chance to go a long way. They finished in third place.

In the six games I have coached the scores are 5-1, 3-1, 1-0, 2-3, 6-1, 5-1. So we are 5 and 1 with 22 GF and 7 GA. We split with the top team in the 3-1 and 2-3 games. Playoffs are a 3 of 5 series vs. the team we beat 1-0 but lost 4-1, 4-1 the weekend before I took over. We have a bye this week.

I have used a lot of the drills the Czech and Russian teams did this summer and they are in the posting above. Today we had a tournament practice with lots of games. It is a way to recover from a three game weekend and the modified rules require good habits. I will attach our last two practices.

By: TomM (offline)  Friday, February 26 2016 @ 03:15 PM GMT  

T2 - B6 - 2-0 – Skate Inside Pass Outside -Shoot - Czech U20

Key Points:

Get the puck over the blue line and isolate the widest defender to break out and enter the offensive zone. Skate between the dots to the ‘big ice’ with the puck and pass wide to create space for a wide entry.


1. Line up in pairs in diagonal corners.
2. Outside player A skate between the dots and pass wide to the inside player B who crosses to ‘take the ice behind.’
3. Player B skate between the dots and pass wide to A who crosses to take the ice behind.
4. Player A enters the zone wide.
5. Player A shoot and both follow the shot for a rebound.

* Create 2-1 situations vs. the widest defender who will always protect the middle and give the outside.

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By: TomM (offline)  Tuesday, March 01 2016 @ 11:11 PM GMT  

Practice Video Clips on YouTube

I put many of the practice clips that are in the Video section on the ABC site on YouTube to help the coaches who have trouble opening videos here. They are organized according to teams that do the drills. I will post them and the coding explanation in pdf.s below.

These lists are constantly updated with about 130 new drills in these groupings since this was posted.

International Ice Hockey Drills - Sweden, Slovakia, Denmark – 38

International Ice Hockey Drills - Female Teams – 173

International Ice Hockey Drills – Czech -100

International Ice Hockey Drills – Russia - 55

International Ice Hockey Drills – Pro – 497

International Ice Hockey Drills - U17 - 34

International Ice Hockey Drills – Finland – 56

International Ice Hockey Drills - North America - 18

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By: TomM (offline)  Wednesday, March 02 2016 @ 04:21 PM GMT  

B202 - Regroup Progression 1-0 - 2-0 - U17

Key Points:

Attack with speed, give a target, follow the shot for a rebound, hit the net, face the puck, pass hard.


1. Start facing each other from behind the blue lines.
2. A pass to B and C pass to D.
3. A-C follow the pass then open pivot for a pass from B-D and shoot at the original end.
4. A-C follow the shot for a rebound and then rebound for C-D.
5. B-D pass to E-F and repeat the other way.
6. Change the drill so A and C skate to the boards and then across.
7. Now B pass to C and D pass to A who cut into the middle.
8. Switch to 2-0 at each end.
9. A-C pass to B-D who pass across to G-E.
10. A-C skate around the circle to the outside B-C cut through the middle after passing.
11. G pass to A and E pass to C.

* Options: after shooting, screen, rebound, give and go with next group, defend 1-1, 2-1, 2-2.

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By: TomM (offline)  Friday, March 04 2016 @ 04:38 PM GMT  

Drill videos on YouTube

I typed in international hockey drills and it listed the drills I posted on YouTube. Google didn't bring it up but seems to list things people pay for. All of the videos are also on this site two thirds of them are written up in the Forums. Right now I am working on doing the diagrams, descriptions and putting text on the videos that aren't done yet.

I took over a U18 AAA female team three weeks ago and we start our play-offs next weekend, so we have two weeks of practice. Last night and tonight we focus on individual offensive skills and using them in games, then I am making our Sat. practice optional to give the players a free weekend if they need it. Sunday we will focus on individual defensive skills, Tuesday on team offensive skills, Thursday on team defensive skills and leave Friday after school for two games. It is a 7-8 hour bus ride so we will go about 5 hours on Friday.

The series is 3 of 5 and goes 2 games there and up to 3 games in Calgary the next weekend.

Thursday and Friday practice plans below.

Wally Kozak is mentor, Jessica Wong who played for Canada's U22 team and Haley Irwin who won two Olympic Gold's are assistants.

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By: TomM (offline)  Saturday, March 05 2016 @ 03:11 PM GMT  

T2 - Reading Middle Drive Options

We did the 3-0 Attack Options sequence and at the next practice Wally Kozak added two defensemen who varied how they defended. First the players did a rep vs. each defense and next the defenders varied whether they stood up at the blue line, challenged in the neutral zone or backed in and the players had to read the situation. We followed this with a Transition game of continuous 2-1, then 3-2 and progressed to 3-2.

1 - Defenders leave from the blue line and back up with a good gap and no stick. Read is to do Option 1.

2 - Defender stands up at the blue line with the stick upside down, so the attackers read this and do option 2 and force the D to protect the middle by skating inside the dots with the puck and forcing the defender to protect the middle then pass to the player from the middle who crosses behind to the outside.

3. Next the defenders have a stick but give up the blue line and back in. Attackers do Option 3 and the wide man with the puck skate to the middle and decide the drop to the player who takes the ice behind, shoot or pass to the player going to the net.

4. Do Option 4 when the defenders have a good gap and you want to change the point of attack.

T2 B6 3-0 Attack Options – Pro

Key Points:
Go hard to the net without the puck with the stick ready for rebounds or deflections. Stop at the net. Shoot low to the far pad to create rebounds. Attack with speed. Read whether the defense gives you the ice behind or in front of you.

1. Line up in three rows at the goal like and start with a puck from one side.
2. Pass to the middle then the far wing.

Option 1
Pass middle-wide-shoot from the wing.

Option 2
Pass middle-wide-cross inside and pass wide and enter wide then shoot from the wing.

Option 3
Read the defense has backed in. Gain the zone then cross and drop. Wide wing to the far post and middle player trail.

Option 4
Cross and drop in neutral zone and then pass to the wide wing. Middle drive and shoot.

* The next stage is to get the fourth player joining the attack.

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By: TomM (offline)  Saturday, March 05 2016 @ 03:32 PM GMT  

B2 - Slapshot and One Timer Progression

Key Points:

Work on the slapshot progress from static to dynamic to pressure. Transfer the weight from back to front, follow through at the target and follow the shot for a rebound. Progress from static to moving then against opposition. The second option that a lot of educators would agree with is to "Create a 'need to know' by playing a game that requires one timers and slap shots and then do 'corrective exercises' to teach the slap shot then play the game again.


We did this one at a time and not as a circuit.

1. Standing individual slap shot.
2. Skate, slap shot, rebound, shoot, pass.
3. Skate, slap, rebound, one touch x 2, leave.
4. One timer x 4 - rotate.
5. Skate, pass low, pass, one timer.
6. 1-1 defend, pass, rest game with goals only on slapshots.
7. Play three cross ice games with the rule that goals must be slapshots or one timers.
8. Play two half ice games where the defenders must get onside before attacking and goals must be one timers or slap shots.
9. Play a full ice game with the same rule.

'The Game is the Greatest Coach'
'Enjoy the Game'


Registered:: 06/25/08

Posts: 2944
By: TomM (offline)  Monday, March 07 2016 @ 04:31 PM GMT  

C6 - 1-1 x 2 Standing Start – Pro

Key Points:

Forwards use change of pace, dekes to the inside to beat the D. Defenders keep the play to the outside and the gap no more than a stick length. Tie up the attackers stick after a shot before looking for a rebound.


1. Players start from diagonal corners.
2. Forwards at the hash on the outside and defense at the top of the circle above the dot.
3. Forward attack vs. the D on the whistle.
4. D keep the F to the outside and maintain the defensive side.
5. F use speed and moves to get to the inside and offensive side.
6. If D has good position then flare back and open up to face the F when the puck is past the top of the circles.
7. D then close the gap and make contact along the boards.
8. If the F beats the D wide then build a wall to protect the puck and go to the net.
9. When D gets beat wide the turn to the inside and sprint to the near post to catch the F.

* Ideally the D learns to skate backwards with no cross-overs starting facing the boards and striding backwards.



'The Game is the Greatest Coach'
'Enjoy the Game'


Registered:: 06/25/08

Posts: 2944
By: TomM (offline)  Wednesday, March 09 2016 @ 10:51 PM GMT  

Last night I ran into the goalie coach who was with me most of the time when I did the skills 3 times a week at the Edge School for Athletes. My son went there one year and played for their Varsity team and I payed his tuition and fees by coaching the hockey class every M-W-F for two years.

The players came by bus and I would be waiting for them at the rink. I only knew first names and hardly saw them without their helmets on. The players were 12-13 years old which are the 'Golden Years' for learning skills. Jeff Hill was the coach but he had me plan and run the ice sessions.

Three of these players made the NHL. Two were number one picks and one was Rookie of the Year. The other player is on the small side but probably the most skilled of the three and has spent the last few seasons up and down NHL and AHL.

Earlier I coached boy's the same age and two of them made the NHL, another is small but won the Hobey Baker. Six players from that team were playing pro last season. They are 85 born.

Before that I coached another who I let come to my summer camps for free and he skated with the Korean teams that I trained most summers through the 90's. He was NHL Rookie of the Year and scored a lot of goals in his career.

Many more players over the years have played Jr. A, Major Jr., college and minor pro. A 93 born player who I coached in Austria last season won the Rookie of the Year' in the Finnish top league.

So the method I learned from Juhani Wahlsten and Vladimir Jursinov is very effective developing players, especially if the players are taught in the three or so years just before puberty.

85ers 1998 - six pro, two NHL, 4 Europe, one Hobey Baker.

Skills Class - two NHL #1 drafts, one ROY and one part time NHL player.
On the bus starting an 8 hour ride to playoff games. Two away and up to three at home. It is nice when buses have wifi, especially on long trips. A lot nicer than some of the drafty old buses we used to travel in. One ur team I played for saved money by using an old school bus and we would put plywood over the back few seats so some players could lie down and sleep.

My friends who played at Notre Dame in Wilcox Saskatchewan told me that Pere Murray would put a wooden shack on a flatbed trailer and the players would dress then sit in the shed around a pot bellied wood stove to stay warm and they would travel all over the Province to play.

I like this fancy bus better.
Got back at midnight last night from the long bus ride. Won both games 2-1. Two time Olympic Gold medalist Haley Irwin is an asst. coach and came on the trip. She would be playing for the Inferno who won the Clarkson Cup yesterday but got a concussion early in the year and had her hip operated on in December and is recovering. Great addition to the staff.

Lots of talent on the team and they work really hard. They were more like 4-1 games but their goalie was terrific. We lead the best 3 of 5 series 2-0 with up to three home games next weekend and the Provincial tournament the weekend after.

'The Game is the Greatest Coach'
'Enjoy the Game'


Registered:: 06/25/08

Posts: 2944
By: TomM (offline)  Monday, March 14 2016 @ 02:54 PM GMT  

B202 - Luhowy Passing - U17

Key Points:

Practice all passes and incorporate balance and puck handling exercises.


1. Players face each other in groups of 2 to 4 at either end.
2. P1 skate with the puck and pass to P2.
3. Make various kinds of passes.
4. Exchange the puck on the forehand, backhand, one forward, one backward, etc..
5. Practice taking back passes, high passes, fake and pass, etc..
6. Ideally have groups of 4 players with 2 at each end for a good work/rest ratio.

* It is possible to have 6 or 7 groups working at the same time to increase reps and decrease inactivity.

'The Game is the Greatest Coach'
'Enjoy the Game'


Registered:: 06/25/08

Posts: 2944
By: TomM (offline)  Tuesday, March 15 2016 @ 02:51 PM GMT  

B3 - One Timer-5 Spots - Czech U20

Key Points:

Take one timers from the off-wing. Practice taking them standing still and then add skate and pass then skate backwards and shoot off the pass. Follow through at the net with both the stick blade and the outside knee.


1. Six players face each other on their off-wing side.
2. Two sets across from each other and one player shoot from the mid-point.
3. Take 4 shots and then switch and be the passer.
4. There can be more than one player shoot from the point.

* If there is a goalie then take turns, if no goalie shoot randomly at the open net.

'The Game is the Greatest Coach'
'Enjoy the Game'


Registered:: 06/25/08

Posts: 2944
By: TomM (offline)  Tuesday, March 15 2016 @ 05:05 PM GMT  

I have been tweeting ideas about using game situations in practice and this is an example.
Practice Plan - Fire U18 Girl's
Date: 15-03-16 Time: 17:15-18:45 Arena: ECR

17 skaters, two goalies, theme creativity, game situation Competition, good habits.

Coaches role in the tournament is to enforce The rules, keep score and only
intervene if the players have no idea how to do the skills.

C2 1-2-3-4-5-5-4-3-2-1 Pass and Shoot Warm-up

Key Points:
Face the puck and pass on the forehand. Stay in each zone until all
players have made a pass.

1. One then two then three then four then five players leave, one
touch in the ozone, shoot, rebound.
2. Next sequence is 5-4-3-2-1 leave the other way.
3. All players make one pass in each zone.
4. In neutral zone skate figure 8's while facing the puck and making
forehand passes.

*When there is only one player do a figure eight or touch both knees.

B Warm-up Circuit F Pass D Shoot Goalie Technique - Czech U20


Haley 12 F’s in neutral zone – Decide what you want to do.
Tom D at one end.
Cam Goalies
Wally choose where you want to go.
If Cam isn’t there we have one half of the rink each.

Tournament Red vs. Black
Games at each end.

1 vs. 4
2 vs. 3
2 vs. 4
1 vs. 3

Keep score and enforce game rules.

15’ Game One – Switch at 7’
Rule one – face puck with sticks on the ice.
Rule two – only forehand passes.
3 push ups for offender and 1 team.

D4 Two Pass Key Points:

The game is the template and then you can add skill or good habit rules to practice 'How to Play the Game.'

1. Players must stay inside the blueline and if they puck goes out the other team gets it.
2. Before scoring the offensive team must make at least two passes.
3. When the defenders regain the puck they must make at least two passes before a shot.
4. Make rules with skills for skating, shooting, passing or good habits.

15’ Game Two – Switch at 7’

Rule one – one timer or one touch goals only.
Rule two – goals only on give and goes.

DT400 Quick Transition Game - U15

Key Points:

Players must quickly transition between the 4 game playing roles.
Offense: Role 1. Puck carrier. Role 2. Support puck carrier.
Defense: Role 3. Check puck carrier. Role 4. Cover away from the puck.


1. Play 2 on 2 to focus on transition between the four game playing roles.
2. Extra players wait at the blue line or to create a tight area game at the top of the circles.
3. Attack and try to score.
4. On a goal, frozen puck or turn-over the defending team pass to waiting teammates.
5. New offensive players attack vs. the players who lost the puck on offense.
6. Players who passed now rest.

* Keep score and have tournaments.
* Any number from 1-1 to 5-5 can be used and move the waiting players to reduce or expand space.
* Modified rules can be used to focus on individual or team skill.

DT400 1-1, 2-2, Support-Attack-Defend

Game one – 1 on 1
Game two – 2 on 2

Key Points:
Defending player stay on the defensive side. Supporitng player give a target for the pass and get into an open lane.

1.F1 attack D1 at each end.
2. Players line up on the boards with the first player in line D1 supporting the defense.
3. The coach can determine whether the supporting defender is passive or active.
4. On a turnover or a goal the breakout pass is made to the supporting defender from D1 to F2..
5. Carry the puck to the red line or if the team has a full ice practice, carry the puck to the far blue line.
6. F2 Attack vs. the original attacker F1. Practice various situations. The big left handed player with the sweat suit is Dany Heatley. It is just after he won the Calder trophy. He came to say hi to the players but because we were playing transition games participated in the whole practice and then stayed and posed for pictures with each of the players.

D100 Scrimmage with Extra Players on Bench

Change every 35” and pass to goalie.
Game one – one pass in each zone.
Game two – two seconds with the puck.

Key Points:

Play a full ice game with the extra players on the bench. Change on the whistle or on their own.
Pass back to the goalie when changing on the whistle.


1. Play 4-4
2. Change of the whistle or players change on the go.
3. Keep score.
4. If no face-offs then scoring team touch the red line before checking.

E1 Rebound Game

This is a scoring contest that seems to be loved by players of all ages everywhere in the hockey world.

Key Points:

Make quick shots and one timers and goalie read the play.

1. Players line up on both side in the slot with one shooter at the top.
2. Play games to 5 between the goalie and shooter.
3. If the goalie freezes the puck or it hits the boards behind or at the side the goalie gets a point.
4. Players get a point by scoring a goal on a shot or rebound. Only one pass is allowed.
5. Shooter stays if he scores and players rotate if there is no goal.

Players gather in middle for team cheer.

'The Game is the Greatest Coach'
'Enjoy the Game'


Registered:: 06/25/08

Posts: 2944
By: TomM (offline)  Sunday, March 20 2016 @ 02:51 PM GMT  

Coaches, I have been re-organizing the hockey coaching material to eliminate repetition.

You should be able to open the drill videos on Youtube if the links from the site don't work.

Practice Video Clips on YouTube organized according to country or level. i.e. Czech, Pro, Female

The following links take you to the drill pdf.s. One is in alphabetical order according to our coding system and the other have them in separate folders.

ABC PDF's in Alphabetical Order – Updated

PDF Folders of ABC Coded Drills and Games – Dropbox

All of these drills and games are posted in the Forum's on this site and the videos are in the video section. You can use the search function to find any topic and then refine the search if you get too many links.

I know most of the team are done now. The female U18 team I took over last month won our play-off 3-0 and has moved on to the Provincial Championship Tournament starting next Thursday. It is the first team I have coached in a long time with enough talent to have a 50/50 chance to win it all and move on to the Canadian championships.

It has been fun and we have had a good run so far. 8 W 1 L, 28 GF, 11 GA. I have a couple of great asst. coaches in Haley Irwin ( 2 Olympic Gold) and Jessica Wong (Canada U22 Team) and Wally Kozak is our mentor.

'The Game is the Greatest Coach'
'Enjoy the Game'


Registered:: 06/25/08

Posts: 2944
By: Anonymous: SMAC ()  Sunday, March 20 2016 @ 09:59 PM GMT  

Congrats Tom - good luck !! Thanks again - love the YouTube stuff -, easy access


Thanks. Five teams make it and play each other once. Saturday there is a Bronze Medal Game between three and four and Sunday the Championship game.

So at least four and most likely five game in either three or four days.

We role four lines and three sets of D pretty equally, so our team is built for this type of tournament. It will be a tournament of attrition. Best goalkeeping, least penalties, best playing habits and overall conditioning should win out.

It will be fun.

Let the games begin.

By: TomM (offline)  Tuesday, March 22 2016 @ 05:11 PM GMT  

T2-4 – D100 – BO-RG-Attack 5-5

Key Points:

Practice team play using this breakout, attack, defend sequence. Any game situation can be practiced and either carry or dump the puck in to practice various scenarios.


1. Forwards start at the red line and the defensemen at the far blue line.
2. Forwards skate back to the far blue line, defense to red line and coach dump the puck in.
3. Breakout of the zone and pass the puck to the opposition waiting behind the red line.
4. Attack 5-5 vs. the original group of five.
5. On a goal, frozen puck or successful breakout pass the puck to the coach.
6. Coach dump the puck in for the next unit to breakout then defend.

* This sequence can be used to practice game situations from 3-3 to 6-5.

'The Game is the Greatest Coach'
'Enjoy the Game'


Registered:: 06/25/08

Posts: 2944
By: Anonymous: SMAC ()  Tuesday, March 29 2016 @ 07:00 PM GMT  

How did you do in provincials

It was a 5 team round robin and we played 4 games. Beat Grande Prairie 4-2, tied Sherwood Park 1-1, beat Spruce Grove PAC 8-2, beat Highwood Raiders 3-2 and placed first and got a bye into the final. We lost to Highwood 1-2. outshot them 26-13 but didn't score on our chances.

We had about 6 A+ scoring chances and got one and they had about 3 and got 2. Some of the players were too uptight and didn't put it in when they usually would.

Great finish though. We coached 14 games and had 44 GF and 20 GA, were 5-1 in in the last six league games to finish the schedule and 6-1-1 in the playoffs and then the Provincial tournament.

Girl's worked so hard and I think we deserved better but that is hockey.

The GHC association had so little faith that we would win the first playoff round (won 3-0) that they didn't rent ice for the week before the Provincials and had to scramble to get us practices.

My assistant coaches, Haley Irwin (two gold medals) and Jess Wong (former captain of Minnesota Duluth and U22 player) were great and did a lot of team building during the down time. Our goalie coach Cam (contract goalie coach) drove the 8 hrs. up to be part of it.

Haley was part of the on ice celebration after the 2010 Gold

Our mandate was to get through the season with no problems and have the players enjoy playing again. The team was rift with internal conflict and made up of first and third year players with only two second year. I addressed this right away and mixed the lines with all age groups, made them sit together, got the hockey mom out of the dressing room and put the captains in charge, met with each player on the bus on our road trips, first and third years shared hotel rooms and put Haley and Jess in charge of team building. There was a lot of talent on the team so I knew we were capable of going deep into the playoffs and we almost got it done.

The team was pretty good in the defensive zone but needed to be a lot more aggressive and we worked on that. I totally changed the forecheck to 1-2-3-4-5 read and react like most NHL teams play and we did a lot of passing games and offensive attack drills featuring reading to middle drive or create wide 2-1's and get the D joining the rush. I also implemented an aggressive PK and a PP that attacks the net continuously. We used lots of transition games and competition in the six weeks of practice I had with them. The most important thing we worked on were habits like facing the puck, stick on the puck, angling and that led to us giving up 20 or less shots in most games while the offense usually produced 30+ shots. So we averaged just over 3 GF a game and just under 1.5 GA a game.

There is only one team in Calgary now and they should always be strong. When I coached two years ago there were 3 then 2 teams with no chance of winning because bottom third of the team were not AAA players. Players continually leave to play at sports schools the last year or two of eligibility so it was hard to build a Championship team. The sports schools play eastern teams and get scouted more but every one of my graduating players this year was offered scholarships by CIS or NCAA schools so the parents should pay to play here instead of $35 000 to send their child to a private sports school.

Winning Silver in the Provincial Championships was good. Losing 1-2 when you outshoot the opponents 26-13 was tough.

They went on to beat British Columbia in the regional final then played in the Esso Cup Canadian Championships. They won the round robin but lost to Ontario in the play-off and ended up winning the Bronze. We split the two league games against them, beat them in the Provincial round robin 3-2 and then lost 1-2 in the Gold medal game. So the teams were about as even as you can get. We played the game better and they have more goal scorers.

I told Girl's Hockey Calgary that I would like to coach the team next year but instead of continuing with me they decided to have an interview process and hired the coaching staff from 14-15 that they decided not to rehire at the start of 15-16 season.

Most of the questions during the interview were about my age and how could I possibly relate to high school aged players. No consideration that I am constantly coaching teams, my skills class, private lessons, hockey camps, attend coaching symposiums, continuously update this site with the most current hockey ideas from all over the hockey world. So the white hair is all they saw and as Simon and Garfunkel sang; 'They hear what they want to hear and disregard the rest.' Any 'ism' is a nasty thing and Ageism is one of them. A silver medal was the best result a Calgary team has had in the last decade and it should speak for itself.

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