Hockey is a wonderful and enjoyable sport. However, if it’s not presented to kids in the right, fun way, they are not likely to love it or to want to stick with it.
For this reason, coaches, are encouraged to make learning the art of hockey fun for young players. This can easily be done through activities that feel like games but that, really, are building hockey skills and making kids love what they’re doing at the same time.
Last Man Standing
One fun “game” to try with young players is to have each of them start with their own puck inside the circle.
Blow the whistle, at which everyone has to skate with their puke inside the circle. When you blow the whistle again, this will signal to players that they can poke check other pucks outside of the circle. They’ll also have to guard their puck at the same time, which focuses on executing multiple skills at once.
The winner will be the one player who has a puck left in the circle. Really, though, all the kids will be winners because they will have learned about puck control and puck possession, all while simply having fun.
Tag is a game that kids have played for ages in a variety of ways. The reason it’s so oft-played is because it’s just plain fun.
It can be fun on the ice too. You can play it the traditional way or add the puck in to the match. The nice thing about tag is that you can easily adapt or change up the rules and/or gameplay to target specific skills your players are working on.
These are just a couple of examples of how to make hockey fun. Trying these ideas and more is a great and worthwhile way to instill a lifelong love for the sport in youth players.