Here's a tactical look at body contact.

Body contact is a term everyone in hockey is familiar with, but it’s not always spoken about with a tactical lens.

Meredith Roth, associate head coach of the College of the Holy Cross women’s team in the NCAA, analyzed body contact recently at the 2020 NHLCA Global Coaches’ Clinic. In a sport like hockey, it’s massively important in every inch of the rink, and at all levels.

“[Body contact is] that concept of fighting for your ice, in order to disrupt your opponent’s ability to make a play,” said Roth. “It’s the physical play that forces your opponent into an uncomfortable or unathletic position and therefore gives you and your teammates a competitive advantage.”

Body contact doesn’t necessarily have to involve a big bodycheck in order to be effective. As Roth shows, even subtle body contact can disrupt your opponent’s movement too.

With the use of video, Roth got into the five fundamentals of body contact, which includes: awareness, scanning/surveying the ice, feet/hips/hands, angling, and timing.

Watch the full 66-minute video with a membership to The Coaches Site.

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The NHL Coaches’ Association is a professional organization that provides support and assistance to the head, associate, assistant, goalie and video coaches of the 32 teams in the National Hockey League.

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