Archive for the Youth Training Category

24 Tips for Raising Young Hockey Players

Posted in Guest Authors, Hockey, MBSC News, Training, Training Females, Youth Training on March 30, 2015 by mboyle1959

By USA Hockey
Editor’s Note: The following was adapted from a list created by David Lynch, trainer for 8- and 9-year-old soccer players at Stockholm soccer club AIK.

Here are 24 tips for parents raising young hockey players:

1- The kids pack and prepare their own hockey bag.
2- Always be on time for practice.
3- Make them put their dirty training undergarments in the wash.
4- Tell them to give 100 percent at practice and games.
5- The kids carry their own hockey bag in and out of the ice rink. That’s carry, not wheel.
6- Teach them how to tighten their own skates.
7- Play hockey with them, where they want and when they want to.
8- Make them wear their equipment until it’s been outgrown, then buy new equipment.
9- Buy them new skates when they need them, not when they want them.
10-Buy second-hand skates and save yourself a fortune.
11-Teach them not to hate other teams.
12-Win or lose, remind them to love the game, and the game will love them back.
13-They will respect teammates, the opposition, the refs, the other team’s coaches. If you don’t teach them this, the coach will have to do it.
14-Let them dream they can be a Patrick Kane, but don’t give them any expectations.
15-Blaming teammates, blaming the ref, blaming anything is out. This goes for the players and parents. Set a good example.
16-Let them play hockey at home with a tennis ball.
17-Take them to hockey games and let them watch the pros.
18-Tell them hockey is for fun. Practice is for fun. If it isn’t fun for them, talk to the coach/club or move to another club.
19-Encourage them to watch hockey training videos on YouTube and let them try and perfect some of the moves.
20-Encourage them, support them, but never ever shout out instructions from the bleachers.
21-Don’t car-coach after practices or games. It sucks the fun out of the game. They know if they played well or poorly.
22-Encourage them to play other sports.
23-Don’t try to “train” your kid. Take them out, ask what they want to do and let them do it.
24-Tell your kids that you love watching them play.

Be Careful With Advice from Armchair Experts

Posted in MBSC News, Strength Coach Podcast, StrengthCoach.com Updates, Training, Training Females, Uncategorized, Youth Training with tags on March 21, 2015 by mboyle1959

“He who seeks the counsel of fools is a fool himself”

This is a cautionary tale. Be careful with taking advice from your son or daughters youth sport coach. Although today’s example comes from the hockey world, bad advice in youth sports is probably more common than good advice.

Please note: I have the utmost respect for most youth sport coaches. My kids have been lucky to have some great ones. With that said, I have also heard and continue to hear some real horror stories. Here’s the latest. 

PS- This a direct quote from an email I received from a former BU athlete. I did not edit this. Please also note, the following advice was given to the parents of a 2007 birth year child, yes a seven year old.

“A lot of parents have asked me what their child can do to become a better player. It starts in the spring and the summer. Hockey is a 12 month sport. If you “put the bag away” I can guarantee you to expect being at the bottom level of whatever team your child makes next year. Kids get better by playing more. If anyone tells you otherwise they do not know the game. I am proud to be apart of program that offers as many opportunities as this one does to have your child on the ice as much as possible. ”

 

The advice above is absolute insanity that runs contrary to every piece of research we have seen. This guy is 100% wrong. A seven year old should absolutely “put the bag away” and play soccer, lacrosse or baseball in the spring. Please do your homework. Early specialization is the biggest mistake you can make. There are at least 10 blog posts on this site from great coaches and great athletes espousing the direct opposite advice this “coach” is giving. If your child is seven, I beg you, please “put the bag away”.

 

The Road to College

Posted in MBSC News, Training, Training Females, Youth Training with tags on March 13, 2015 by mboyle1959

Parents are being mislead. Yes, all the tournament and camp organizers are deliberately misleading you. Parents shell out thousands of dollars for exposure camps and exposure tournaments for their son’s or daughter’s. The organizers tell you that attending a certain camp or playing in a certain tournament will improve your chances of making the team or of getting a scholarship.

The bottom line is it’s not true. Four days of camp will not change your child. Neither will a weekend tournament. Parents make a critical error at the wrong time. The most critical time in a young athletes career is the summer. This is when a young player needs to train to prepare to have a great season. However, instead of preparation, parents of athletes with potential often choose exposure. The result is usually the same. The athlete goes to 5-6 “exposure” camps to be “seen” by college coaches. Instead of training and preparation the summer is about travel and “exposure”. The final result is that the athlete is not physically prepared for the season and ends up either getting injured or having a sub-par year. Coaches that might have had interest suddenly disappear. Sure things turn into maybes. Suddenly all the time spent on exposure seems wasted as there is no “product” to expose.

The road to college sports should go right through a weightroom. I know this sounds old fashioned but, it’s true. If your child’s goal is to play college sports, then, get ready to play. Don’t spend all summer trying to convince coaches how good you are. Spend the summer trying to get better so coaches will notice you. You can’t network your way into college sports and even if you can, in these days of email etc., send an email and a video.

Every summer I discourage the parents of some of the best high school players to forgo the five camp plan and train. Instead focus on the 1 or 2 camps that have the most value and, focus the rest of the time on training. The results are always outstanding. The players who train are clearly improved and the players who were seniors are all going to the college of their choice.

 

It works out exactly as I said it would because our plan makes sense.

The ideas of athlete development and athlete exposure are almost polar opposites. The key is to balance the need to be seen by and meet college coaches with the need to train to be able to impress coaches during the critical senior year.

 

Every sport has entrepreneurs and organizers who swear they know the answer. The problem is they have a vested financial interest in you and your child. They need you to make money. The truth is, so do training centers and sports performance centers. However training centers and sports performance programs help young athletes do exactly what professional and collegiate athletes do in the off-season, train. Most summer training programs are intentionally modeled on the programs that have helped high school, college and professional athletes succeed for decades. The programs are not flashy or sexy. In fact they are difficult and demanding. However, they are designed around a successful formula, not a quick buck strategy. This summer you have a decision to make. You can try to show everyone how good you are in a few camps or tournaments or, you can actually work at getting better and preparing for the seasons that really matter.

Will My Kid Fall Behind Without Playing Summer Hockey?

Posted in Guest Authors, Training, Training Females, Youth Training with tags , on March 9, 2015 by mboyle1959

THIS IS A MUST READ FROM MY FRIEND MICHELLE AMIDON AT USA HOCKEY!

 

Q: Will my kid fall behind without playing spring and summer hockey?
A: Likely not, and more importantly, your child will enjoy greater success in the long run if they avoid playing year-round hockey now.
Even NHL players and Olympians take extended time away from the ice in the summer. It’s an essential component of their recovery, development and maintenance of high-level play. For children, that time away from hockey is even more important. Year-round hockey programming harms young skaters emotionally, physically and athletically, yet, many parents and coaches claim that early specialization is necessary to become an elite hockey player. It’s simply not true. USA Hockey, the United States Olympic Committee, countless high-level coaches and numerous physiologists will tell you that early specialization actually limits and damages prospective hockey players, reducing their chances of becoming the cream of the crop.
So what exactly is early specialization? It’s when a player, prior to puberty, focuses all of his or her time on one sport in hopes of increasing or accelerating skill development. It may sound like a logical route to more skill development, but research and anecdotal evidence indicates the contrary.
Young kids have short attention spans that limit the amount of time they can focus and perform repetitions correctly. Participating in multiple sports allows these young athletes to learn a variety of motor skills, hone them efficiently and increase their physical literacy. It teaches them diverse movement patterns, varied skill sets and cognitive understanding of game sense. Taking a long-term holistic view, it also puts them on a path toward a lifetime of real-world physical fitness, because they’ve developed the ability, confidence and habits to be competent in multiple physical activities. For the 99 percent of youth athletes that don’t become professional athletes, this varied fitness foundation helps them enjoy the camaraderie and health benefits of an active lifestyle in adulthood.
Another benefit of playing multiple sports is a reduction in overuse injury risk. Sports medicine doctors are seeing a substantial increase in overuse injuries among children and early specialization is a major contributor. These players are getting injured before they even have a chance to develop physically. Calls for change are coming from the hockey world all over the sporting community, including from Major League Baseball and USA Baseball, which recently launched a Pitch Smart initiative aimed at reducing these kinds of injuries brought on by early specialization and overuse.
Early specialization is also increasing the psychological burnout rate among children, eliminating many from the game before they even hit their athletic prime. Among those who hang on despite the burnout, there’s an indifference to their game that caps potential.
Adults get caught up in allowing or pushing their little ones to play one sport for a number of reasons. They might be scared that their child will fall behind. They might push them simply because the kids are good at it and see immediate skill improvements and love the results. However, athletic development is a long process, and sport-specific skill development is only one piece. In order to be a great player, one must be an athlete first. And it’s important to remember that, especially in hockey, the “great” 10U player won’t automatically be the “great” player in years to come, when it actually matters and the stakes are higher. Skills and sense transfer from sport to sport. Overall athleticism matters. Hunger matters. Energy matters. Recovery matters. Early specialization impairs all of this, limiting athletes’ potential for long-term success. The goal should not be to produce the best 10-year-old, but to cultivate healthy children instead, and give them an opportunity to thrive in high school athletics, college athletics and beyond. It’s hard to trust it as a parent, when those around you seem to be submitting to early specialization, but take heart in the following:
The U.S. Olympic Committee recently published a report based on a survey distributed to nearly 2,000 Olympic athletes. The results indicated that the vast majority of Olympians did not specialize in their sport until very late in their development, and even then, some continued to participate in other sports.

Average number of sports played among Olympians (by age)
Age                                   Average Number of Sports Played
10-and-under                3.11
10-14                               2.99
15-18                               2.2
19-22                              1.27
22-and-older                1.31

These findings indicate that Olympians were involved in an average of three sports per year until age 14, which contradicts the notion that early specialization is critical to long-term athletic success. Multi-sport play appeared to be beneficial to these Olympians.
Similar findings come from the NHL. When asked, “How old were you when you started to specialize (only play and train) in hockey?” here is what some of our American NHL players reported:
Player                              NHL Team                 Age of Specialization
Craig Anderson              Ottawa Senators             High School
David Backes                  St. Louis Blues                18
Beau Bennett                 Pittsburgh Penguins       15
Dustin Brown                Los Angeles Kings           16
John Gibson                  Anaheim Ducks                15
Jimmy Howard             Detroit Red Wings          15
Trevor Lewis                  Los Angeles Kings          15
Jonathan Quick            Los Angeles Kings           17
Brandon Saad               Chicago Blackhawks       15

The football world also weighed in with evidence contradicting the perceived benefits of early specialization. ESPN surveyed 128 NFL quarterbacks – 73 active, 55 retired – and 95 percent of them played multiple sports in high school. Nearly 70 percent of them played three sports or more. There were only five active NFL quarterbacks who reported that they were single-sport specialists, and each of them was a backup quarterback.
Bottom line, mounting evidence shows no benefit to young athletes specializing in a single sport. Even more alarming, they have a greater risk of repetitive-use injury, they experience more burnout and they miss out on the advantages that playing multiple sports can give them.
So, encourage your kids to try different sports and to have fun while they are doing it.

Become a Better Player by Not Playing!

Posted in Guest Authors, Hockey, Injuries, MBSC News, Strength Coach Podcast, StrengthCoach.com Updates, Training, Training Females, Youth Training with tags on February 25, 2015 by mboyle1959

Confusing headline? I hope it makes you read this.

Athletes Are Made In the Off-Season

If your child is a hockey player from 6-15 PLEASE don’t sign them up for spring and summer leagues! The only people who need spring and summer leagues are rink operators and league operators. ALL THE EVIDENCE SAYS NO.

Athletes Are Made In the Off_Season

The Disease of Me

Posted in Hockey, MBSC News, Strength Coach Podcast, StrengthCoach.com Updates, Training, Training Females, Youth Training with tags , , on February 17, 2015 by mboyle1959

I love coaching books. Pat Riley’s The Winner Within was a great read. Riley obviously knows a lot about winning. I think the Disease of Me concept from his book actually applies more to hockey, than to basketball as goal scorers are coveted early and spoiled early. They get constant praise and very little coaching as coaches fear the defection of their precious scorer.

Are you coaching a kid that has The Disease of Me? The only cure is honesty.

 

 

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MBSC Mentorship April 6-9th

Posted in MBSC News, Seminars, Strength Coach Podcast, StrengthCoach.com Updates, Training, Training Females, Uncategorized, Youth Training with tags on February 11, 2015 by mboyle1959

Mike Boyle Strength and Conditioning is happy to announce the dates for our next mentorship. The first mentorship of 2015 will be held April 6-9th at Mike Boyle Strength and Conditioning in Woburn, Ma.

Space is limited to 12

Mike Boyle Strength and Conditioning would like to invite strength and conditioning coaches, personal trainers, physical therapists, athletic trainers, and other health professionals to participate in its Strength and Conditioning Mentorship Program. This program was designed to educate industry professionals on current training techniques through physical participation, workout observation, and in depth discussions with Mike Boyle and his qualified staff. Participants will be introduced to the latest injury reduction and performance enhancement modalities of training.

Spots will fill fast as we are limited to 12
Register today!
http://www.bodybyboyle.com/mentorship

 

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