Every coach wants to have more practice time, however, are we making each drill we use productive from a development perspective?
When it comes to warm-up drills, the mindset is to use this time to get players touching the puck, getting their blood flowing, and feeling good. As a coach, is there a way we can look at warm-up as a way to improve technical skills, focus on spatial awareness, and set a highly competitive standard for practice?
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As a coach, it is critical to assess how we structure our warm-ups in practice. In a youth hockey game, you are only given a few minutes to warm up, then the game is on, so we need to create an environment that replicates that in practice. We need to create an environment early in practice that will enhance the competitive level of our players, while still using this time to promote technical and tactical skill development.
The following are five warm-up drills coaches can incorporate into their practices to make warm-up more effective for player development:
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