How To Get Goals In Hockey

By: Jimmy Cox

Let us consider going after goals in ice hockey. That means assists, too. So let us take a look first at the various ways of shooting and of beating the goalkeeper.

Before we do this, you should know a very important fact about shooting. Your team will do well to average 30 to 40 shots on goal per game. If you are a forward, you may have only six to eight shots in a game. In an hour of scrimmage practice, this average may be only slightly higher.

Then, too, there is the battle of wits that goes on between you and the opposing goalie. You can hope to win this duel only if you have a thorough knowledge of the target areas he has trouble covering, which means you will have to put in long, hard practice sessions with him in the net.

During these long, hard practice sessions, your constant companion will be your stick, which plays a very important part in good shooting. Your stick will be your best friend if you show as good a judgment in selecting it as you show in selecting your skates.

So you will not score many goals unless you put in a good amount of shooting practice to get the speed, power, and accuracy which will make your few chances count. And you will not be able to shoot your way out of a paper bag unless your technique for getting the puck away is sound.

Your Stick and Other Hockey Needs

Your choice of stick should be made with care so that, after you have used a few, you know what hand, lie, length, and weight suits you best.

You can buy a left, right, or neutral stick at a sporting goods store. Pick one for the hand with which you shoot, provided it does not have too pronounced a hook in the blade. A right-handed shot places his right hand lower than his left on his stick, shoots forehand from his right side, and usually uses a right-handed stick.

A left-handed shot places his left hand lower than his right on his stick, shoots forehand from his left side, and usually uses a left-handed stick. Go to a neutral stick when you want to correct a fault of consistently shooting too high. Sometimes the bend or hook in a blade causes the aerial attack you always seem to launch.
THE PROPER STICK LENGTH for any player is determined by holding the stick up against his body while he is wearing ordinary shoes. The stick end should come just below his nose.

The weight of stick you use should be the lightest you can get without it being too brittle or too "whippy." The less weight in the blade, the easier you can handle the whole stick. Some players go to considerable trouble to plane wood from the thick part of the heel, or they even cut an inch or two from the toe, to get a lighter stick.

You should wrap the blade with electrical tape to keep it from breaking. This also serves the purpose of "cushioning" the puck in pass receiving and in stickhandling.

Your necessary equipment for hockey is complete when you have gloves, shin pads, pants, stockings, elbow pads, athletic support, shoulder pads, and a helmet. You are very wise to wear a helmet, whether required or not. Not only will it protect you, but it also will give you confidence in your early years of developing skating skills. Now you should be able to score goals, pleasing yourself and your team!

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