Player Tip – Passing & Communication
Passing a puck in hockey is a true art, and it is one of the most important aspects of the game. Passing is something that is taught to beginners and is practised by professionals. It is the most efficient way to move the puck, and it is the foundation of a goodhockey team. Perhaps the most important part of passing is vision. This is something that can only be learned with practice. Players must have the experience of handling the puck without looking down. They must be able to skate freely on the ice while looking for teammates and for the next move. Vision is best practised by challenging yourself to look up instead of down. The best players in the world have an incredible ability to see the ice and read the play.
Another important part of passing is communication. You must feel comfortable with your teammates enough that you can talk on the ice. As the player with the puck, you should be able to direct teammates to optimal positions. Without the puck, you should let the passer know when you are open, and you must also have the discipline to decline a pass so the passer can make a better play for the team. Hockey provides an endless amount of options for passing. The puck can go tape to tape, off the boards, saucer pass, skate to stick blade or anything to reach a teammate. Use your imagination when passing the puck.
Coaches’ reminder: make sure to keep drills fresh, creative and informative!