Author Topic: A total noob to Ice Hockey - sore and loving it  (Read 10144 times)

santa-maria

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 1005
  • Skating with attitude
Re: A total noob to Ice Hockey - sore and loving it
« Reply #22 on: February 28, 2017, 01:18:25 AM »
Jump and spin both ways is quite unique although I know some skaters who do both O0
As Granita mentioned, all turns and steps need to be equally trained (good luck seeing me doing clockwise forward crosses  :D )
PS: Dear Andy, send my warmest regards to Jordan (small world) and ask if he managed to get himself a new partner, it would be a shame to stop trying..
Life is just question of priorities...

For Fame, Glory and Cuddly toys..

AndyinSwindon

  • Full Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 180
  • When Hell Freezes Over...At least we can skate!
Re: A total noob to Ice Hockey - sore and loving it
« Reply #23 on: February 28, 2017, 06:40:23 AM »
Hey Santa-M,

Will do.  Jordan is a number one chap.  He's been very helpful with his advice, and as well as being a great skater, is a top ambassador for the Link.  He's great and engaging with the kids on the ice, and with keeping them safe.
Started skating 07.01.17
Currently working through NISA LTS Levels.
Currently wobbling through hockey LTP sessions.

AndyinSwindon

  • Full Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 180
  • When Hell Freezes Over...At least we can skate!
Re: A total noob to Ice Hockey - sore and loving it
« Reply #24 on: March 01, 2017, 07:48:17 AM »
Update time again!

After a bit of a boot up the backside from myself to myself, I dragged myself back to the rink last night with trepidation.  I had committed to trying the 'How To Hockey' once more, after my confidence took a dent the last time....and I'm glad I did!

On the way to the rink, I wondered if anyone would notice if, instead of going through with it, I just sat in the car for an hour and had a nap, but then decided that I was going to learn nothing unless I bit the bullet, and so wandered in and got kitted up.

I have to admit, and if any of the persons mentioned happen to read this, I mean no offence, but it was a much better session without the members of the local rec teams turning up.  Much less pressure, a much more level playing field (rink?), and an overall more relaxed and accessible session.  As I hadn't been for about 3 weeks, but had skated a lot in the meantime, I found that whilst my technical skills are still lacking, they are starting to be more on par with lots of my fellow skaters.  Sure, there were a handful of excellent skaters, very fast, technically adept, and good to watch, but it just felt a lot more inclusive this time around.

We started off with a warm up (line to line diagonals, with puck, and stopping at each line end....nope, hockey stop still not there yet), then onto drills, firstly tight turns around cones (puck optional), then dribbling practice, moving on to passing and shooting practice.  I still find myself sometimes missing the objective and skating around looking a bit bewildered, but then that's generally me in everyday life anyway.

Next up was a bit of fun with the '3-bar' challenge....two teams, each tasked with taking shots to hit the 3 bars of the goal nets.  Losers penalised either with press-ups, or dragging a member of the opposing team from end to end on the ice (which was actually a fun challenge in itself).

Finally there was a pretty good half hour of scrimmage, with plenty of opportunity for ice time, plenty of shift changes, and no shift-hogs like last time.  I found that even though my turns, stops, backwards speed and crossovers are non existent in a useful capacity, the game was far more involving that it had been in the past, as I am getting a bit more mobile and balanced, and able to read things a little more effectively now. 

A few people have said, give it a year, and you'll look back and wonder what the hell you were struggling with.  I've only been skating about 7 weeks or so, and I think they could be right.  I left the rink last night feeling pretty happy with the experience, and am looking forward to the next session.
Started skating 07.01.17
Currently working through NISA LTS Levels.
Currently wobbling through hockey LTP sessions.

Leif

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 534
Re: A total noob to Ice Hockey - sore and loving it
« Reply #25 on: March 01, 2017, 06:51:57 PM »
Glad to hear you are having fun. If War and Peace was as amusing I might have read it. No wonder so many Russians turn to alcohol.  :)

I think you have the advantage of getting tuition and I'm sure you will get good advice from the others. I am discovering that skating is excellent exercise, better than running as it stretches the legs and pelvis more, and does not put so much stress on the joints. We have rec hockey at our rink, and the minimum skill level is quite low, so it is tempting.

AndyinSwindon

  • Full Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 180
  • When Hell Freezes Over...At least we can skate!
Re: A total noob to Ice Hockey - sore and loving it
« Reply #26 on: March 02, 2017, 06:48:02 AM »
Leif, my only advice would be, if you get the opportunity, give it a go!  I've found that the hockey sessions are a world apart from NISA lessons, demand a very different skill set, and develop your skating abilities in a much different way, but the two complement each other perfectly.

My son has regularly protested that he doesn't want to do any figure skating, because it's 'girly', but I've explained to him that any skills he picks up with the NISA lessons will be transferable and useful, all ice time is good time!

I've found that with the very rare exceptions (and even then, it's implied rather than directly mentioned), the other chaps on the learn to play hockey lessons are nothing but supportive, encouraging and tolerant.  And you're right about the exercise, I hate running at the best of times, but I love skating.  That's the key to any kind of keep fit - finding an activity you enjoy pursuing, rather than one you have to endure unwillingly.

As for the Russians, I believe the choice is Vodka, Hockey or both.  After all, without them we wouldn't have the likes of Ovechkin (well worth looking him up on Youtube if you haven't heard of him).
Started skating 07.01.17
Currently working through NISA LTS Levels.
Currently wobbling through hockey LTP sessions.

AndyinSwindon

  • Full Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 180
  • When Hell Freezes Over...At least we can skate!
Re: A total noob to Ice Hockey - sore and loving it
« Reply #27 on: March 02, 2017, 06:52:39 AM »
Leif - just an addition to my last post.  If you do the Basingstoke learn to play, I'd be interested in hearing how it goes.  The rink at Swindon runs classes at 2315hrs on a Tuesday, so my attendance depends upon my shifts.  I think I saw a recent web page for Basingstoke advertising the sessions at a much more sociable time, and so I could possibly supplement one with the other if my shifts get in the way, as I often work in Basingstoke.  Haven't tried your rink yet, and I've heard mixed reviews, but it's nice to try a different rink now and then.
Started skating 07.01.17
Currently working through NISA LTS Levels.
Currently wobbling through hockey LTP sessions.

beginner skater

  • Full Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 106
Re: A total noob to Ice Hockey - sore and loving it
« Reply #28 on: March 03, 2017, 08:50:53 AM »
Andy, I think the beginners hockey in Swindon moves forward to a more earthly hour in the summer/off season. I dont know the details of when, and the early time, altho would be interested if you can find out.  ;D

AndyinSwindon

  • Full Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 180
  • When Hell Freezes Over...At least we can skate!
Re: A total noob to Ice Hockey - sore and loving it
« Reply #29 on: March 03, 2017, 09:13:41 AM »
Thanks for that beginner,  I find the late night a bit of a double edged sword.  On the one hand, there are no members of public milling around (no armchair skaters to hurl their advice), which is a good thing, and it's also shift-friendly for early shifts, and  sometimes, late shifts.  On the other hand, an earlier time would make it easier when on nights, days or lates.
If I hear anything about a different time slot, I'll post it on this thread.
Started skating 07.01.17
Currently working through NISA LTS Levels.
Currently wobbling through hockey LTP sessions.

Leif

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 534
Re: A total noob to Ice Hockey - sore and loving it
« Reply #30 on: March 03, 2017, 10:01:58 AM »
Leif - just an addition to my last post.  If you do the Basingstoke learn to play, I'd be interested in hearing how it goes.  The rink at Swindon runs classes at 2315hrs on a Tuesday, so my attendance depends upon my shifts.  I think I saw a recent web page for Basingstoke advertising the sessions at a much more sociable time, and so I could possibly supplement one with the other if my shifts get in the way, as I often work in Basingstoke.  Haven't tried your rink yet, and I've heard mixed reviews, but it's nice to try a different rink now and then.

Hello Andy

I can get times and contact details for you if you wish, so you can find out more. I think you are right, I seem to recall a 6:45pm start, or thereabouts, which for me is good, albeit I'll have to swallow my dinner whole.

Basingstoke rink is a Curate's egg. It is a bit scruffy and worn looking, and a few weeks ago the ice was in poor condition. However, recently they have been resurfacing the ice properly, so it has been very good, and the rink is not as busy as Guildford and Bracknell, which makes it easier to practice. Plus the people are very friendly, both staff and regular skaters. In fact non skaters are friendly too, several have asked me questions, and chatted. You don't get that at Guildford, in fact I think if you speak to someone, they'd have you shot and your body hung outside from a lamp post as an example to others.

Weekend poublic sessions cost over 8, plus a 2 charge if you do not have an Ice Card (you can request one online), plus a 1 charge if you pay by cash, plus a 1 charge for a (reopenable) locker with a 3 hour time limit. At least once you get on the ice you are lighter by several kilogrammes after they have extracted all of your money.

AndyinSwindon

  • Full Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 180
  • When Hell Freezes Over...At least we can skate!
Re: A total noob to Ice Hockey - sore and loving it
« Reply #31 on: March 03, 2017, 11:22:54 AM »
Hi Leif,

Great post. I'm still chuckling now.  I'll stay well clear of the 'Guildford Gibbet' I think!  Obviously a 'local rink for local people'?  (Apologies Guildfordians / Guildfordonians / Guildforders ....or whatever the term is).

The Basingstoke sessions seem to be Monday 10am-11am, or Thursday 8:45-11:00pm (depending upon skill level).  Sessions are 10, so comparable with Swindon.

The Swindon sessions are generally a warm up, followed by 30-45mins of drills, and then finished with a scrimmage game.  This means they're nicely balanced between training, and practicing what you've learned, whereby Basingstoke is 'Stick n puck', which can vary.  In some places this follows the Swindon format, in other places it's more a case of an open session on the ice in full gear practising moves and taking shots on goal.  If anyone knows the Basingstoke content it'd be helpful.

One thing I have consistently been impressed with in Swindon has been the quality of the ice.  When freshly resurfaced (made the mistake of saying 'Zambonied' once, never doing that again, took a long time to get out of that conversation / lecture on brand names and trade marks) it's like glass.  Swindon has been criticised for being a little worn and dingy as a venue, but it has a lot of character and warmth (in terms of personality), whereas Milton Keynes was modern, but a little characterless and sterile.....and the ice was rutted and very uneven around the boards.

I understand that the Planet Ice franchise are pretty much doing their own thing in terms of skating standards.  Whereas Better (the owners of Swindon) follow NISA, I believe PI have their own progression scheme which is a proprietary standard.  I guess at the end of the day, money is the name of the game, and as businesses, they have to generate revenue as they see fit.  The blessing with Swindon is that when the Wildcats moved in, the manager bought as much ice time as he could get, and so it is a very hockey orientated facility.  I feel very lucky to live so close to The Link Centre, and hope it can sustain itself for many years to come.

In terms of cost, The Link is on a par with PI I think.  I have my own skates, and as I am signed up for groups lessons, all of my public skate time is covered with the same payment.  This saves a fortune.  Rather than paying around 8-10 per session (I sometimes skate 7 days a week), I pay just shy of 40 per month (lessons included).  My son, being 10yo, costs about 30 per month (until he starts dragging me to the vending machine, or into the hockey shop)!.  Hockey sessions are a further 10 per session for me, 6 for my son.

I think PI are changing the Ice Card program too.  I have one for MK, but recently had an email to say they will be charging annually for the card, but you will get discounted skating as a card holder.

I might have to move somewhere colder so I can build a backyard rink!
Started skating 07.01.17
Currently working through NISA LTS Levels.
Currently wobbling through hockey LTP sessions.

AndyinSwindon

  • Full Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 180
  • When Hell Freezes Over...At least we can skate!
Re: A total noob to Ice Hockey - sore and loving it
« Reply #32 on: March 05, 2017, 01:37:41 PM »
Well time for another update, bit of a mixed bag this time too.

Had my NISA lesson yesterday, and have been told I'm close to moving up to level 4, so good news on that front.  Just need to concentrate on the moving two foot turns to the left, and to improve my right footed one-foot glide.

After the session, we hit (figuratively, not literally) the public ice, and damn it was frustrating.  Trying to practice my turn by the safety of the boards was nigh on impossible, due to groups congregating for a social and getting in the way, and another inconsiderate skater who kept deciding to skate up right in front of me for a chat, just as I was mid-manoeuver.  My hockey-player side almost surfaced and the bloke nearly got checked and put on his arse, but I skated off to cool (on an ice rink? Really?) down for a while.  By the end of the session, I was frustrated, irritated, and no closer to perfecting the move. 

Tip for any readers, unless you know your interruption will be welcomed, if you see someone is working on a move, stay out of their way and let them practice!

Also, ladies, if you really must take your handbags to the rinks, in Swindon it costs only 30p for a locker.  Put them in there!  Not around your shoulders where they get in the way and are a liability.  It's an ice rink, not a shopping mall.  Really, what do you really need from your handbag in the middle of a rink?  I love the 2hrs that my phone is in the locker, and I'm incommunicado.   Ok, rant over.

Went back in today for the public skate, and bumped into one of the guys from the hockey classes, and we spotted for each other whilst practicing our backwards skating, thereby reducing danger to other rink users, and being able to give each other welcomed advice (see how it works now?).  By the end, I could do the two footed turns on my weak side, and my backwards skating has much improved.  Left the rink feeling much better than I did yesterday.

Cheers for now :-)
Started skating 07.01.17
Currently working through NISA LTS Levels.
Currently wobbling through hockey LTP sessions.