How Do You Keep Your Hockey Player Motivated During the Season?

motivation_postLast week we asked you to share your tips to keep players motivated during the season. The individual who provided the best answer would win a $50 gift certificate to You provided an abundance of great ideas. Congratulations to Laura Jaramazovic for providing the following winning response:

Laura said: Keeping a hockey player motivated during the long hockey season can be a challenge. After all, there are no six to seven digit incomes prodding them on, only the love of the game. Since the love for the game is their primary motivation, parents must bear this in mind.

Once it becomes a chore, work, or something associated with parental nagging, the love is soon gone. This is why kids are usually more motivated at the beginning of the season and are worn out by the end. Somewhere between tournaments, travel and practice drills the “fun” aspect of hockey soon fades away and it can become a job – and, as adults, we know how fun most jobs are.

To keep a player motivated patience is required. The temptation to nag must be kept in check or going to hockey practice becomes synonymous with “go do your homework.” Here are some tips to help keep things fun and avoid nagging:

  • Get hockey bags ready the night before to avoid the rush and stress that usually accompanies the trip to hockey practice.

  • Make sure your player gets enough rest during the season. We all know how important rest is to keep them from getting sick. The same thought also applies to keeping them from burning out. Sometimes they are just too tired.

  • Try and keep outside activities in balance with at home family time. Our kids' social calendars are busier than a CEO's at times, which can lead to burnout.

  • Take them ice skating as a family.

  • See if your team will have some play time such as broom ball or baseball on ice with hockey gear, etc.

  • Give the player ownership. If they won't get their gear ready, you don't go. At some point you have to put it in their hands to want to play.

  • Most importantly, be involved and cheer them on. It's supposed to be fun, right?

I hope this helps some desperate hockey parents out there. Remember it is ok to let go of the battle and get back to having some fun.

Editor’s Note: Congratulations to Laura Jaramazovic for her winning answer. As a thank you for her input, is giving Laura a $50 gift certificate. Want to win this week's prize? Be sure to click here for the latest Grow the Game contest.
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