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If you dream of attaining glory on the hockey rink, it is time to give your PS3 a rest, get off the couch and get to business. Fitness, skills and strategy are vital to your gameplay. So get into shape and start honing your strengths.

Get the Basics Right

Eating healthy will go a long way in aiding your hockey career. Give up the fries and coke and start munching on greens. A good night’s sleep is also vital to any player’s health. Don’t lose out on your REM sleep and ditch the habit of watching movies or playing video games before sleeping. The action packed visuals keep your mind racing long after you’ve drifted off to sleep. Extracting yourself from Halo might be a monumental task but in hockey, you win some and you lose some.

The key to a good physique is the right training schedule. Follow the rest and recovery routine and instead of sprints, run shuttles or suicides. Mix it up; get ample rest between exercises so that your body can easily adapt to extreme situations.

Train to Win

Quickness is an important trait in hockey. The rink isn’t big enough for long movements so you need to be excellent at short, quick manoeuvres. Practice short sprints and diagonal movements to increase your quickness in the rink.

Strength is not about how beefed up you are, it is about how much you can endure. Develop your resistance, it will add to your stride and forcefulness during the game.

As a hockey player, you need to pay extra attention to your femur muscles. Performing overhead squats will loosen up your hip flexors and improve your bending posture. Inculcate static and dynamic stretching exercises in your training schedule as they will open up your muscles and give them a wider range of action.

A six pack might be pleasing to the eyes but having a set of washboard abs means low body fat. Thus your body has less fuel to burn and you risk running out of gas in the middle of a game. So don’t sacrifice your performance for an aesthetically appealing physique.

You must cool off after a heated training session. Riding a stationary bike helps regulate your blood flow and prevents cramping. Wrap up your training with simple stretching exercises.

Sharpen Your Skills

Reading the ice correctly and understanding the game is as important as playing it. Play the game as much as you can, with friends, family, coaches, teammates and even alone. This will help you tune in to the intricacies of hockey and speed up your reaction time.

Shooting is a skill that you simply must possess, how else will you win those games? Practice shots from different angles and positions; see what works best for you. The trick is to practice and practice so much that shooting comes naturally when you are being hounded by the opponents in the middle of a nerve-wracking game.

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