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Took My Son Skating for 1st Time

Lots of threads about the finer details of the game. But I forgot how hard it is to skate if you’ve never been skating before. The smile on his face is something Ill never forget. Only on ice for about 30-40 minutes and mostly held him while skating just trying to get him to stand up. He is 5 years old an wants to do it again. Ive played NCAA and a little in ECHL, but have to admit it took me a little bit to figure out how to actually explain how to skate. Its not that easy! Lucky we just focused on trying to stand up.
Then I just let him sit on the ice and play a little. The little things mean the most! Haha.

Anyway just wanted to share because this is where it starts. Ive got him signe up for a “lean to skate” program at a local rink. He cant even stand up so not sure about that. I just want him to have fun and learn to skate.

John
Philly

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Philly,

Good times! Make sure you get some pictures! I took my boy (2 Y.O.) out last winter after I finished teaching a class, and he loved it when I pushed him! We could only find strap-on bob skates to fit him, but this year he has size 6 feet and I might buy him some "real" skates.

Our next door neighbour (an NHL linesman) is putting the finishing touches on his backyard rink (about 80' long and 40' wide - we are hoping to put plexi-glass up on the ends and have some board advertisements from the Saddledome) and I will be in charge of helping clear the snow / floods this year while he is on the road... looking forward to some "old time hockey" outdoors like when I learned to skate!

(The CBC might do a remote broadcast from here with a bunch of neighbourhood kids during the outdoor game in Calgary this year... stay tuned!)

Dean


Dean
M.Ed (Coaching)
Ch.P.C. (Chartered Professional Coach)
Game Intelligence Training

"Great education depends on great teaching."

   
Active Member
Registered: 08/05/09
Posts: 2059
Location: Calgary AB Canada
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John, good luck on starting a new adventure with it's ups and downs and a lot of time with your boy.

I loved coaching my son and one daughter.

Enjoy.


'The Game is the Greatest Coach'
'Enjoy the Game'
   
Admin
Registered: 06/25/08
Posts: 3122
Location: Calgary, Canada
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Hey John,

I enjoyed the same situation with my son as a beginning 4 yr. old skater and here's what we did that made a difference.
In the beginning my wife and i skated around the rink with him in between us holding our hands and he just wasn't getting the hang of it.
At the suggestion of a friend we instead gave him a traffic cone to use as support and in about an hour,once free of us he literally took off and developed quickly.
he just turned 10 and seemingly hasn't been off his skates since.
Enjoy the time together.

Steve
Outside Philly

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Thanks everyone. One of local rinks (Aston) has a walker. Next time we'll get that because what you said Steve makes sense. I live near the Skatium too and since it just opened Ill try there too.
I signed him up for Learn to Skate which starts in Nov. I use to coach a local college team and our power skating instructor is going to help as well. She has lots of experience with 5 years old.

Ijust like that he enjoys shooting the ball around in the driveway. He makes up these little game where you have to hit something with the ball. Thats a good sign!

Thanks all

John

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Sounds like you had fun, that's good, always have fun with the little ones!

A large cone (h:~50-60cm) is a very good in teaching skating. Also if your rink has these smaller goals, you could turn that facing down and it can be pushed like a "Zamboni" on ice, maybe collect tennis balls or similar with it. When I teach these 4-8 year old's to skate I had always a bucket full of tennis balls and I just throw these all over the ice and told the kids to collect them from between their legs by bending angles and knees to get low and by still keeping their heads up. When the bucket was full, I usually throw those tennis balls again, it was fun practice ;-). I get those tennis balls for free from local tennis club, they had thousands of used tennis balls lying arounf there...

These kind of skating "support" devices (~walkers?) are common around rinks here:

but I think that large cone will do the same. Maybe a some sort of steel chairs are also used.

   
Junior
Registered: 10/01/08
Posts: 34
Location: Finland
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My grandson just went through the evaluations for Novice 7-8 hockey. They have about 15 teams in divisions 1-8. He was selected for Division 1. They play Division 1 teams from other organizations around the city.

When I came back from Austria in 2009 he came to the camp Gaston and I do in Jasper each July. He was walking on his skates with one hand on the stick on no skating stride. Of course he couldn't skate backwards or stop.

At the camp he is on the ice for 3 one hour sessions each day alternating between 2 skating and one hockey and 2 hockey 1 skating. He made div. 4 last season and learned to stop during the year.

He came again this summer and really improved his stride, backward skating and playing with two hands on the stick. He is very competitive by nature; so hockey is a great sport for him. He played soccer in the spring and early summer and not spring hockey.

So if a child wants to play and gets some solid instruction in active practices he/she can improve really quickly.

My grand daughter did the figure skating camp that Gaston has at the same time and loved it. She is 5.

I have gotten a few questions about the Jasper camp so I am attaching last years brochure. It is just a small and friendly camp. Players range in age from 6-16 and the older ones, some help the younger players and they do the games with players or similar ability. We do a short one also Dec. 27-29. The key is they get a lot of ice time and the skills are always put into game situations and the skating skills are taught by Gaston who has a Doctorate in body mechanics, was Swiss champion, coached at the Olympics and was a feature skater for Ice capades and holiday on ice. He does the hockey with hockey skates on and the figure skating in figure skates.


'The Game is the Greatest Coach'
'Enjoy the Game'
   
Admin
Registered: 06/25/08
Posts: 3122
Location: Calgary, Canada
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Tom,

I agree with your statements about how quickly kids can learn when they are given proper instruction! When they apply themselves and are active, their learning is accelerated in comparison to boring, stand-around-between-turns practices. (I encourage kids to handle a puck while waiting in line... pass with a partner; off the wall; toe drags, etc.)

I have seen incredible gains in a short time in my skill academies because we spend less time talking and managing and more time doing. More skating, puck control, shooting and decision-making games under the auspices of healthy competition add to the learning and enjoyment of all!

A bit of time is needed at the front end to do a skill analysis (timed and videoed), to teach the kids a basic "Hockey 101" (or Total Hockey to Make a Complete Player) and to explain the "Rules of Engagement" for the games... then we are off to the races!

Let's talk about the camp Dec 27-29th. Do you need any instructors?


Dean
M.Ed (Coaching)
Ch.P.C. (Chartered Professional Coach)
Game Intelligence Training

"Great education depends on great teaching."

   
Active Member
Registered: 08/05/09
Posts: 2059
Location: Calgary AB Canada
8 posts :: Page 1 of 1