Coach Nielsen's Ice Hockey Drills

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St. Norbert’s 1×1 Warm-up Drill

Here’s another drill from the coaches at St. Norbert’s. This drill can be used at any time during a practice session but I like it as an early practice warm-up type of drill. Give it a try.

1on1 – 3 Passes

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Filed under: 1 x 1 - 2 x 1 - 3 x 1, coaching, Defensemen, Drills, Forwards, Stick Handling

Combination Drill From Former NHL Player Tony Horacek

Former NHL player Tony Horacek coaches in our organization and I went out to watch his practice the other night. While watching a really up tempo session I saw his team run this drill and thought it was really excellent and worked on a number of areas of the game. I spoke with Tony about it and got the details and am sharing it with all of you. It is a multi-part drill so I did my best to make it understandable in the diagram, but if you have any trouble I also did a YouTube video explanation. Hope you like it.

Horacek Combination Drill

Filed under: coaching, Cycling, Defensemen, Drills, Forwards, Passing, Practice, Shooting, Transition

DIII Head Coach Jack Arena of Amherst College Offers 4 Small Area Half Ice Drills

Coach Arena has been the head coach at Amherst University for over 30 years. In 2008-09 he won Coach of the Year honors for NESCAC and New England hockey writers ECAC East. In 2011-12 he won National Coach of the Year honors from the AHCA. I contacted Coach Arena and asked him if he would be interested in contributing a few drills to our site and he agreed. I told him I’ve been receiving many requests for half ice drills because so many teams now share ice to save on cost. Coach Arena supplied us with four very nice half ice drills that go beyond just small ice games. Take a look and see what you think.

I will add these drills to the Half-Ice section and also an Amherst College section for future use if Coach Arena would like to contribute additional drills.

4v4 Back-To-Back

4v4 Transition

Plattsburg 2v1

3v3 Forecheck/Breakout

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Filed under: coaching, Defensemen, Drills, Forwards, Goaltender, HalfIce, Passing, Practice, Shooting, Small Area Games, Transition

Defenseman Hinge Drills

While in Pittsburgh for the America’s Showcase tournament I had the chance to speak with a number of coaches about drills and specifically how to teach the hinge play successfully to defensemen. I came away with three drills that really seem to work well. The Shot and Hinge is from Derek Schooley of Robert Morris University and the other two came from Jerry Domish a junior “A” coach and a coach I respect a lot. Hope you like these and can incorporate them into future practice plans.

I have added these to the Defensemen section of the site as well.

Hinge Drill

Hinge With Regroup Pass

Shot and Hinge

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Filed under: coaching, Defense, Defensemen

A Few Drills From a Junior Practice

Last night my Midget 16AAA team skated with the Junior “B” team that plays out of our rink. The coach of that team is a well know guy in our area (Jerry Domish), so I was looking forward to the opportunity to be on the ice with him and his team. Most of the drills he ran were the same or similar to drills we run at our practice, but the big difference was the size of the players and the intensity levels.  I picked up a few that I wanted to share.

2 Shot Warm-up

Figure 8 – 2×0

1×1 Both Ends

2 Man Drive Passing

 

 

 

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Filed under: 1 x 1 - 2 x 1 - 3 x 1, coaching, Defensemen, Drills, Forwards, Passing, Shooting, Warm-Up

New Drills from Robert Morris University

Head coach Derek Schooley at Division I Robert Morris University has given us three new drills that he runs with his team. Coach Schooley has been a major contributor to this site and his continued participation is greatly appreciated.

Defenseman Shot and Hinge – This drill works passing, receiving, shooting and skating skills for your defensemen in a drill that mimics game like situations. You will need three coaches to act as passers or you can have the other defensemen not running the drill work as the passers.

Kosty Lateral Transition – Nice drill designed to get your defensemen skating with the puck laterally and making the transition pass to start the breakout from the neutral zone. The drill ends with the forwards going hard to the net 2 on 0.

Pearl Small Area Game – This is a nice take on the small area game drills that many coaches use these days. Basically a 2 on 2 with a transition to a new set of two players. The drill is continuous and gets everyone involved pretty quickly.

I hope you find these drills helpful.

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Filed under: coaching, Defensemen, Drills, Passing, Practice, Shooting, Skating, Small Area Games, Stick Handling

A Few New Practice Drills

Sorry it has been so long since I posted new drills, but have been very busy coaching two teams plus games, I’m sure you all know the feeling. Here are a few drills I received from coaches associated with Team Canada and I ran each of these the past two weeks at my team practices to see how they worked. All four are very nice and force the players to skate hard and pay attention.

Team Canada Rush – This one I like a lot. It has two parts that are run simultaneously and it creates traffic in the neutral zone while working on shooting / passing and skating. Make sure the defenseman who starts the breakout skates hard to get to the far blueline.

Team Canada 3×1 – This drill works on teaching the defensemen to jump into the rush off a neutral zone regroup. On the play the defensemen has the option of passing to a wing or skating with the puck, but make sure no matter what he does he jumps into the play.

Canuck 2×1 – This drill works on passing and tempo. Make sure the forwards are skating hard coming out of both zones and make sure the passes are hard and on the tape. Once this drill gets going it flows real nice.

5 Passes Warm-up – This drill is designed as a beginning of practice passing and receiving drill. It gives the players a chance to skate / shoot / pass & receive all in one cycle around the rink.

Hope you find these drills helpful. Enjoy the remainder of your season and good luck if you are in the hunt for playoff spots!

I will add these drills to the Canadian National Team section and the 5 passes drill will be added to the Warm-up section.

Filed under: coaching, Defensemen, Drills, Forwards, Passing, Practice, Shooting, Skating, Warm-Up

Half Ice Drills Section Added to Site

With more and more teams going to shared ice practices to save money, the need for solid half ice drills has become more and more in demand. Those of you who follow my site know that I try very hard not to post drills that I haven’t already run myself with one of my teams. Before I post a drill I want to be sure it serves a purpose. With that being said, I have spent a good deal of time since September trying different half ice drills so I could be sure I was giving you good drills to work with. Here is a collection of 40 drills to start with and I will continue to add more as I go along the remainder of the season. Remember to also add small area games to your half ice practices (even full ice when you can) because they are a great way to incorporate game type situations into a fun drill.

 

Half Ice Drills

Small Area Games

 

 

 

 

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Filed under: Checking, coaching, Cycling, Defensemen, Drills, Forwards, Goaltender, Passing, Shooting, Skating, Small Area Games, Stick Handling

New Drills from the Coaches at Robert Morris University

Division I head coach Derek Schooley at Robert Morris university has been a contributor to our site for over two years and now his assistant coaches Mark Workman and Josh Brown have contributed a few drills.

The first drill Brownie Quick-Up is designed to work on neutral zone transition and 1 on 1 defensive rush play.

The second drill Worky Rush ID is designed to make the defensemen read the rush and determine how to defend it.

Both of these drills are designed to run at game speed, so make sure you force the players to work at a high tempo.

Brownie Quick-Up 1×1

Worky Rush ID

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Filed under: coaching, Defensemen, Drills, Forwards

Coach Eaves of Wisconsin Contributes a Nice Flow Drill

Division I University of Wisconsin head coach Mike Eaves has contributed another drill to our site. This one is a full ice flow drill that works on supporting the puck in all three zones of the ice. Coach Eaves tells me that he uses this drill every practice right now to get his players in the habit of supporting areas of the ice during the breakout. He suggests that at first you run the drill from only one end at a time and then when the players become proficient in the concepts and positioning you run it from both ends simultaneously. Check it out, hope you find it helpful.

FINN 3×0

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Filed under: Defensemen, Drills, Forwards, Passing, Shooting, Stick Handling

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