Speed training drills are one of the absolute most important things that hockey players can focus on. Speed, along with power and agility, is one of the cornerstones of what makes a great hockey player, yet so many players simply ignore speed specific training. In this article we’ll look at exactly what you can do to train yourself to be faster and more explosive on the ice.
On-Ice Speed Training
On ice training is a great place to train for speed using certain drills to help maximize speed and acceleration. When doing your on ice speed training remember, that form and technique are the two places to focus on. Small changes in your form can have huge impacts on your overall speed, which is why power skating is so important.
Likewise, technique is huge. Watch the top skaters in the NHL skills competition and you’ll notice their technique. They don’t take a lot of fast, choppy strides to try and get down the ice as quickly as possible. Instead, they take two or three very quick powerful strides, get up to top speed almost immediately, and then use long smooth strides to maintain that speed. The key to this is “first stride speed” or “first stride acceleration”.
Off-Ice Speed Training
On-ice speed training is important, but the fact of the matter is, if you want to be able to skate your fastest, you absolutely need to focus on your hockey fitness. The gym is where the fastest players are made, and if you want to skate faster and dominate the competition, you absolutely need to be heading to the gym and doing exercises designed specifically to make you a faster, better hockey player.