If you are dedicated to improving your skating, shooting and stickhandling then balance drills and edge work drills are going to give you the biggest results. You might be asking why would a skating drill help improve my shooting and stickhandling? I am glad you asked
Drills that help a hockey player improve balance will also improve other skills because without balance there will be no power or agility. A shot that is taken while off-balance lacks the proper weight transfer to generate full power into the shot. An off balance player can not properly execute the correct chain to take a good hard shot
An off balance player will be easy to knock off the puck, and take the puck away from because as soon as they make a mistake in their footwork, or stumble for a second the player with better balance will catch up and take the puck away. A good stance, proper balance and good edgework is the base to good puck control
Oh yeah, you will also be MUCH better at skating!
Why Balance is important + 5 Balance drills
The ultimate goal for a hockey player is to feel just as comfortable (if not MORE comfortable) in your skates as you feel in a pair of sneakers.
More balance drills for hockey player
- Shoot the duck – Players glide on one leg and squat as low as they can while keeping their other leg out in front
- Squat – Glide and then squat as low as you can
- Russian lunges – Players touch one knee to the ice, then the other in quick succession while pumping arms
- Belly slide – player skates, jumps and slides on their belly, then gets up as quickly as possible
- Spins – Players skate, go down on two knees and spin, then get up as soon as possible
- Edge work drills – These are more advanced and push the players to expand their comfort zone
The Fundamentals of skating
Balance is one of the fundamental skills of skating, but there are many other building blocks that will help you improve. Visit our Learn to skate series to see our other videos and articles on the fundamentals of skating.