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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How to Beat a 2-1-2 Forecheck

Coaches' Corner, Defensive Zone, Philosophy, Team Strategy, Team Systems
How to Beat a 2-1-2 Forecheck During the 2012 Stanley Cup Playoffs, I did a video dissection of Ryan Carter's game-winning goal against the New York Rangers. The video got quite a few hits that night, and I had a number of requests to dissect the play from the defensive point of view. People wanted to know what went wrong, and what the Rangers could have done differently to prevent the goal. So I put together a follow up video, showing how I would have beaten the 2-1-2 Forecheck the Devils were using. Since we're ramping up for the new season, I thought it would be a good idea to brush up on beating the most commonly run forechecking system, the 2-1-2. 2-1-2 Stack vs Spread There are two types…
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Winnipeg Jets’ Penalty Kill (DISSECTED)

Coaches' Corner, Philosophy, Special Teams, Team Strategy, Team Systems
A Detailed Analysis of the Winnipeg Jets' Penalty Kill Forecheck and Defensive Zone Coverage Setups In this video we walk through a detailed analysis of the Penalty Kill Systems the Winnipeg Jets are using. Remember, systems play is very subjective - everyone has their own opinions... this is my two cents worth! Here's a quick breakdown of what to look for: FORECHECK: 1-3 Forecheck: F1 tends to commit too early, allowing the Wild defenseman to walk out from behind the net uncontested. F1's Angle: Breaks my cardinal rule for trap-style forechecks - DON'T GET BEAT BEHIND YOU! NZ Transitions: Jets rely too heavily on picking off passes in the neutral zone, and not enough on solid angling and positioning. This won't work as well against the better teams. PK DEFENSIVE…
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Philosophy: Utilizing the Hockey Development Pyramid

Coaches' Corner, Individual Skills, Philosophy, Team Skills, Team Strategy, Team Systems
The Hockey Development Pyramid is a great tool to help design your season's "Road Map" Before the season begins, it's a good idea to take inventory of your team's strengths and weaknesses. I use the Hockey Development Pyramid as a tool to help gather my thoughts, and determine what areas of play should be focused on over the course of the season. Skills within various tiers of the pyramid can be developed simultaneously (i.e. puckhandling and passing can be developed during a breakout drill). However, it is EXTREMELY important to build from the bottom up, not from the top down. Players who have not developed a solid foundation of Individual and Team Skills will never be as effective at performing the higher-level skills such as Team Systems and Strategy. ENJOY!
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NHL Play Dissections

Coaches' Corner, Defensive Zone, Neutral Zone, Offensive Zone, Philosophy, Special Teams, Team Strategy, Team Systems
Check the Embedded PLAYLIST Above, for Updated NHL Play Dissections This post is a little different than usual. I've recently put together a number of videos dissecting various NHL plays and situations. I've been posting these videos on my YouTube Channel, but I thought my blog readers might find them useful too. So... the video above is actually a PLAYLIST, which will update itself whenever I post a new play dissection to YouTube. When you hover your mouse over the video, you'll see the other play dissections I've already posted. Many of these dissections will refer back to concepts we've discussed in the Coaches' Training Course, so take a browse through the course if you haven't yet. I'm going to be posting more play dissections as we progress through the…
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