Enhance Skating Speed: applying quick recovery

Research has found the quickness of the recovery skate is an important aspect of skating speed.
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Introduction

Many coaches talk about “foot speed” in reference to acceleration or speed, which makes sense. However, there is another aspect of foot speed that is overlooked, that being the speed at which the recovery skate can get back on the ice to start another push-off. Research has found the quickness of the recovery skate is an important aspect of skating speed.

Quick Recovery Research

Wayne Marino (University of Windsor) found that speed in hockey is dependent on stride rate: the number of times a player can get his or her skates on the ice to push-off over a specific distance (a winger “driving” to the net or a d-man chasing a puck in the corner). To corroborate his findings, he further indicated the quicker a player gets his or her skates on the ice after push-off, the faster the player will be.

Pierre Page compared fast to slow players and found the faster players had a total recovery time (when the skate leaves the ice after push-off to when the same skate lands on the ice) of 0.37-seconds compared to slow players 0.48 seconds, for a difference of 0.11-seconds. That was the time for one stride.

Research has found the quickness of the recovery skate is an important aspect of skating speed . . .

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Mike Bracko

Mike Bracko is a skating coach, skating researcher, strength & conditioning coach, and fitness educator. He holds a Doctorate degree in Exercise Science and Biomechanics and is a Certified Strength & Conditioning Coach through the NSCA. He played hockey in the AJHL, BCHL and NCAA (University of Illinois-Chicago). He does skating clinics with 300–400 hockey players every year specializing in 1-on-1, small group, and team skating with male and female players ranging in age from 8 years old to pro players.  He is also the strength & conditioning coach for the USA Men’s Deaflympic hockey team. www.hockeyinstitute.org  [email protected]

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