Skating- The Most Crucial Aspect Of Ice-Hockey

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p { margin-bottom: 0.08in; } What makes ice hockey tricky and different from the simple hockey? Obviously the ice floor, on which the players cannot run but have to slide or in other words, skate! Without doubts, it can be declared that ice hockey is a game, where the player needs to highly active motor skills.

Apart from learning the different shots, the player also has to master the art of skating on ice. The foremost thing required for skating is balancing. A player having below average skating skills has a really bleak chance of making it good in ice-hockey.

Veteran ice hockey players have agreed that there is always a room for improvement in skating. Let us discuss a few necessary tips which can help you to become a stronger, faster, and more efficient skater.

Let us first discuss tips related to forward skating

  • Always remember to bend your knees. While skating, one needs to produce adequate power, which is only possible through proper knee bend. While bending, make sure that you are bending at the knees and ankles and not at the back.

  • Always go for Long Full Strides. While skating, make sure that each time you stride, you extend your legs and feet out to their maximum length. Only a proper knee bend can make sure that you accomplish it perfectly. Also you should make an effort to not to bobble up or down.

  • Always recover fully. One important thing to keep in mind after taking each stride is to recover your skates fully. Your aim should be to pull skates back in a direct line as fast as possible.

  • Always push at a 45 degree angle. A player should bear in mind that every time he strides, he pushes his legs out from his body at a 45 degree angle as this the angle, where maximum forward power and speed is produced from.

  • Always use Toe Flick. In order to acquire extra strength at the end of each stride, make sure to use your angle and toes to flick/rip the ice at the end of each stride.

  • Always move Arms Front to Back. This is one of the main factors in maintaining balance while skating. Always move arms in a front to back motion (like a dryland sprinter) rather than opting for swinging arms side to side.

  • Always keep Upper Body Still. While skating, try using upper body movements, such as head and shoulders, to a minimum as it will act as a hindrance in maintaining balance.

  • Always keep stick on ice. One of the foremost things to be kept while skating is that a never let the contact of your stick and ice break. Even if you are not expecting a pass, you should make sure that the stick stays on ice as you skate, although you can take one hand off your stick.

  • Always use Quick Starts. When starting from a complete stop, you need to stay low and use toes of your skate blades. While first few strides should be quick and short, but when you gain speed, slowly lengthen to full long stride.

  • Train with Resistance. An excellent way to bolster skating muscles is to train on ice with skate weights and resistance devices. One can completely trust on the Hockey Lateral Speed Training and Overspeed Trainer products to become an efficient skater.

Now let us shift our focus on the backward skating tips. Though many rules are same as that of forward skating, but there are still a few differences. Read on to know what they are.

Backward Skating Tips

  • Always bend your knees. Proper knee and ankle bend is essential for attaining the maximum power out of each "C" cut. You can presume yourself to be sitting on a chair with your knees bent and upper body straight.

  • Always utilize Full "C" Cuts. To make sure that you are getting the maximum power out of each push, you need to extend your legs and feet out to their full length with each "C" cut.

  • Always recover fully. After each "C" cut, make sure to bring skates fully back under your body. In order to achieve a full "C" cut, you need to master the art of full recovery.

  • Always Keep Back and Chest Up. Most of the players make the mistake of letting their upper body extend too far over their toes. The trick is to keep your head and shoulders back. This will allow distributing your weight directly over the middle of your skates.

  • Always keep one hand on stick. You can easily keep your head and chest up if you take off your bottom hand from your stick. This will also help you to easily pock check the puck away from your opponent.

  • Always Rip the Ice. It's pretty similar to the toe flick in forward skating. Here you are supposed to use your ankle and toes to rip the ice while you are making a "C" cut.

  • Always keep Glide leg straight. Once a "C" cut has been attained, make sure that your glide leg is leading your body in a straight line. A straight line defines the shortest distance between two points.

  • Always keep both feet on Ice. Always keep in mind to keep both your feet on ice when skating backwards. However, this rule does not imply when you are crossing over.

  • Always move Arms Front to Back. Just like in forward skating, in backward skating too, you need to avoid swinging arms side to side and rather move arms in a front to back motion much like running backwards off the ice.

So, here are a few tips for those who are learning or are planning to learn Ice Hockey. Master the art of skating first and rest will follow.

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