Teaching Defense to 7-Year-Olds

Teaching Defense to 7-Year-Olds

1 on 1's, 2 on 2's, 2 on 1's, 3 on 2's, Defensive Tactics, Hockey Drills, Individual Skills, Skating, Team Skill Drills, Team Skills, Team Strategy
Teaching Defense to 7-Year-Olds I recently received an email asking about 1 on 1 strategy for 7-year-old defensemen. The coach asked whether he should be teaching the players to play it skating backward (even though they don't skate well backward yet), or starting forward then pivoting backward, or something else altogether. I thought it was a great topic for discussion, and one I'm currently dealing with as well, since I'm working with the same age group on my son's team. So... as I always say, here's my two cents worth: Angle First, then Build to Backwards Most 7-year-olds aren't capable of skating backwards well enough to play a proper 1 on 1. But there are still 1 on 1s in games. So what do you do? Here's my strategy: Put…
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Stop & Start Angling

Stop & Start Angling

1 on 1's, 2 on 2's, 2 on 1's, 3 on 2's, Checking & Angling, Hockey Drills, Team Skill Drills
Stop & Start Angling I used this drill last week with a group of Mites and Squirts in a local clinic here in Salt Lake City. It was a progression from some of the skills we had been working on earlier in the session. This drill combines stops and starts, angling, and drive skating. Stop & Start Angling: 1. Players line up as shown, offensive player (white) in the corner, defensive player (blue) toward the middle, players waiting in line near the blue line. 2. Offensive and defensive players start facing each other. Each stop and start is to be done facing each other. 3. On the whistle, players run a mini ladder: out to the first cone and back, then out to the second cone and back. 4. After…
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Pressure v. Contain 1 on 1

Pressure v. Contain 1 on 1

1 on 1's, 2 on 2's, 2 on 1's, 3 on 2's, Checking & Angling, Defensive Zone, Team Skill Drills
Pressure v. Contain 1 on 1 Good drill from the PIJE drill collection over at DrillDraw Pressure v. Contain 1 on 1: 1. Form groups of two around the rink. 2. In each group, there is one forward (carrier) and one defense (forechecker). 3. The forechecker tries to prevent the carrier to move toward the center: A) the forward does not have control of the puck (pressure situation), then, B) the carrier has full control of the puck (contain situation). 4. Reverse the roles for each sequence. USE THIS DRILL IN YOUR OWN PRACTICE PLAN:
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Czech Race

Czech Race

1 on 1's, 2 on 2's, 2 on 1's, 3 on 2's, Checking & Angling, Hockey Drills, Individual Skill Drills, Skating & Agility, Team Skill Drills
Czech Race is an Intense, Sprint Race This one is a great, full-speed sprint race. Lots of intensity, and good opportunity for some physical contact. Czech Race: 1. Players line up on red lines 2. On the whistle, two players across from each other race to the puck 3. The player who gets to the puck first shoots, other player backchecks 4. On the next whistle the other two players go the other way USE THIS DRILL IN YOUR OWN PRACTICE PLAN:
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Bednar Escape Race

Bednar Escape Race

1 on 1's, 2 on 2's, 2 on 1's, 3 on 2's, Hockey Drills, Individual Skill Drills, Team Skill Drills
Here's a Fun Competition Drill that can be Run Half-Ice I picked this one up from by good friend Jan Bednar, out in Slovakia. This one is great for full-speed agility skating, and works power turns and pivots, forward and backward. Bednar Escape Race: 1. On whistle, first player from each corner leaves and skates the route shown 2. Full power turns around each cone, pivot backwards around the bottom quarter of the circle 3. Race to the puck, player who gets there first shoots, other player backchecks USE THIS DRILL IN YOUR OWN PRACTICE PLAN:
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