JUNIOR COACHING @ OBHC

JUNIOR COACHING:  The Junior Hockey Syllabus

Junior Coaching Folder OpenAny good sports club needs a healthy Junior section to ensure longevity and bright future after all they’re the next generation.  Our club coach Andrew Wilson (L3) who currently coaches abroad in Spain at Egara and within the national setup designed our Junior Coaching Syllabus which structures our coaching for ages between 4yrs and 14yrs.  We’re one of only handful of clubs nationally which have such a document which makes our Junior section unique, ensuring only the best coaching is provided for your child.  The syllabus forms an essential part of our excellent Mini’s and Junior setup as it ensures we give the correct level of coaching in line with their bodies development.  There are three sides to it;

1) Physical; this ensures the Minis/Juniors are not over worked as at between the ages of 4 & 14 their bodies are growing rapidly and preparing for the “big push”.  Therefore it is very important to coach in line with this phase of growth to help further develop their physical state as well as not over work.  If a child is over worked this can damage tendons, muscles, cartilage etc which could cause long term injury and be potentially career ending before they’ve even started.  It also gives guidance on injuries and how best to treat/recover from them to ensure totally recovery without sustaining any further damage.

2) Mental; between the ages of 4 and 14yrs the brain is under going some rapid changes and it’s just as important to engage the brain and again not over work it but also create situations which will need a little thought in order to achieve the correct end product as well as explain things when they’re confused.  What makes a good hockey player as well as being physically strong is having a good hockey brain, in having the ability to recognise and evaluate situations ensuring that their next action is the most appropriate.  For example a 1v1 situation being the ball carrier should they take them on if so what’s the best way to beat an opponent or is it best to protect the ball, roll out and make a pass back/transfer this also includes off the ball movement can they move to help create a pass or a 2v1 situation.

3) Success/Loss & Respect; understanding success and loss are also key in any sport as well as respecting your opponents and own team meets.  Success, how to take it and what it means to them and others and on the flip side what losing means and how best to use those feelings to come back stronger individually and as a team.  The coaches role here is essential to encourage and keep them motivated as much as possible and get them to explain how they feel and to try and understand it.  Respect is also essential towards your opposition and also your fellow team mates, it can be shown in different ways before, during and after games, in training and off the field entirely.  We insist that all players shake hands and give three cheers to the opposition after each game.