The Truth Behind Great Game-Day Performance

Here's a hockey truth that the sooner learned, the better an athlete can become. A player's performance in a practice or game is often shaped hours, days or even weeks earlier. Getting a player ready, whether in the right equipment, fittest body or best attitude, must be more than a casual thought. Preparation takes time and that adds up to success on the rink.

In the pros, off-ice training is given more attention than on-ice training, especially in preseason. Getting a player ready physically for a game takes a lot of work. While younger players are not physiologically mature for weight lifting and other strenuous exercises, they can make good progress on their stamina. The result? An ability to play hard for a full game.

Nutrition and rest are critical parts of a younger player's game because they are already using so much energy for normal play and growth. Don't overlook proper eating and hydration (fluids, fluids, fluids) for the younger players too.

Right before a practice or game, players must make sure they are ready to play. Key items before a practice or game include:

  • Focus: Don't choose the minutes before a game to discuss other life problems.

  • Rest: Be rested and capable of maximum physical effort.

  • Energy: Have fuel (food) and water for efforts.

  • Equipment: Keep all the equipment in good shape.

  • Role: Know the role to play and review how to play position.

Getting ready to play hockey is not something to focus on just 30 minutes before a game. In order to be effective, players must adopt a healthy lifestyle that emphasizes good nutrition, exercise and mental preparation. Editor's note: Thanks to Sports Esteem for the article.

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