This summer, stay out of the rink and instead practice shooting
Since the warm weather-break is officially upon us, I will utilize this column to reiterate both a seasonally-accented mandate of mine to consider adopting and a suggested off-ice drill that – regardless of position – is designed to increase your goal production next season by 10 percent or more.
First, stay out of the arena and off skates for a minimum of six weeks from today.
Your body requires rejuvenation. The oft-times not-so-clean-air you inhale inside of the Zamboni fume-filled structures must be cleansed in order to guide your muscles through the mending and growing process. And, spending time outdoors feeling a healthy/managed dose of the sun injects and provides necessary vitamin intake ... naturally.
So spend time in the newly found minutes/hours riding a bicycle, playing tennis or golf.
Baseball and lacrosse are obviously terrific hand-eye complements to ice hockey and should be pursued, if possible, as well.
Now let me address the off-surface drill...
It is possible that you have heard me preach the benefits of what I deem “100 Shots A Day” at some previous juncture-in-time.
It involves ripping 100 shots a day of various types for the next 60 days.
That equates to 6,000 shots! More than enough to increase velocity, accuracy and quickness of release significantly.
Wrist, snap, slap, one-timers and crease kill-zone roofers must all be factored-in. Of course, much attention should be paid to developing a powerful backhand shot as well.
Shooting while moving and the lightning-fast “catch, drop & fire” are excellent to intersperse. And, shooting while being hacked, whacked and hooked is a great game-simulation technique to attempt to hone.
Radar guns and iPhone video can add both competitive flair and self-improvement analyzation capabilities. Use each if possible.
Weighted pucks used discriminantely should also be leveraged.
In closing, again, take a break from the ice but use the time advantageously to become the next Brendan Shanahan, Marcel Dionne or Brett Hull.
Oh, if necessary, YouTube each scoring big goal after big goal on the NHL stage. Most of their success was due to the work they put in off-the-surface summer after summer as amateurs.
Best of luck.
Try visiting home improvement stores like Home Depot or Lowes for discarded sheets of plexi-glass that can be leveraged to simulate and ice-surface on the driveway or in the basement.
Remember: attempting to place the puck through a pinhole (perfectly accurate) is not the primary goal of your shooting sessions. Hitting-the-cage anywhere via a quick-release and general heaviness/hardness is what we are striving to achieve. Missing the net is a sign of laziness and selfishness, in my opinion.
Open the door for a team-exalting/inspiring rebound marker is the ultimate team-helper. BE THAT PLAYER!
Paul Lubanski’s company – Wilderness Xtreme Sports – invents bold new takes on traditional sporting competition. You can learn more at www.wxsports.net. You can also call Paul at 248-762-6998 for team/organizational motivational speaking or coaching en-hancement presentations.