QuickStickz Review




QuickStickz is a Fun and Effective way to Develop Stickhandling Ability

I’ve been really excited to get this post out, and let you know about a cool product called QuickStickz. QuickStickz is an innovative new way to work on your stickhandling abilities off the ice, and it’s a lot of fun too!

A few months ago I was invited to take a look at QuickStickz, which is a video-game-based, hockey stickhandling development system. I had seen the product before, but I’d never had the chance to get my hands on one. The idea seemed really cool, so I was excited to see what it was all about.

How it Works:
QuickStickz uses a special infrared camera that connects up to your PC via USB jack. The camera combos up with a customized SmartHockey stickhandling ball, that has been machined out with a whole bunch of tiny reflectors all over its surface. As you stickhandle, the camera picks up the movements of the ball, and sends the signal into the computer, which allows you to see your stickhandling movements on the screen.

Set-up is pretty simple, just plug in the camera, go to the QuickStickz member’s area, and install the plug-in when prompted.

Drills and Games:
Once you’re up and running, just select a drill or a game from the member’s area, and have at it! The drills are designed to help you work on various skills such as tight puck movement, wide puck movement, dekes, toe drags, etc. The games apply these skills in a more dynamic environment.

Member’s Area:
The member’s area is a great way to track your progress. You can check your own stats and progress, or see how your top score compares to other top scores from around the world. The member’s area also tracks how much time you’re spending on QuickStickz. This makes it easy for parents or coaches to check in on the player’s efforts and progress.

Conclusion:
QuickStickz is a great tool to help any player develop his or her stickhandling abilities. It’s a lot of fun, and it’s a product that I think connects with kids on their level. The one weakness of QuickSticks is that it’s fairly sensitive to the ambient lighting in the room you’re using it in. Sunlight badly interferes with the infrared signal put out by the camera, and makes the ball just jump around on the screen. So make sure you close the blinds, and rely on your “artificial lighting” (regular lightbulbs), and you should be just fine!

Hockey Coaches Training Course Introduction




Welcome to our Hockey Coaches Training Course!

This course is designed as a pre-season “tune-up” to help coaches think through the Team Systems they plan on using throughout the upcoming season. So, our main focus will be on hockey systems, and what options might work well for your team.

CLICK HERE to see our course syllabus, which outlines everything we’ll be covering in this course. As we progress through the week, the individual topics will become live as more content is added.

DISCLAIMER: Every team is different, and has different strengths and weaknesses. Therefore, what works well for one team might not work for another. There are many “correct” ways of implementing systems with your team. The things I’m showing you are based on personal experience as a player and coach, and should be tweaked and adjusted to best fit your team’s style. ENJOY!!

Skating: PowerSlide Hockey Slide Board




The PowerSlide Hockey Slide Board Allows you to Imitate a Skating Motion while Developing Other Skills

A while back I was talking to one of my coaching buddies about some of the cool off-ice training equipment that is available these days. I mentioned something about combining a hockey slide board with a stickhandling skill pad, and how it would be cool to be sliding back and forth while stickhandling, passing, shooting, or anything else.

At the time I thought my idea was completely original… but, it turns out that innovative hockey coaches have had their players doing this for years!

What You Get, and Set-up:
So… here’s what I did. I picked up the PowerSlide slide board from HockeyShot. It’s a really high quality slide board that is portable, so you can take it places; adjustable, so you can use with athletes of various sizes and abilities; durable, so it’ll hold up to a lot of usage; and super grippy, so it won’t slide around on you.

The first thing I did was watch the free DVD that came with the PowerSlide. The DVD was very helpful for instructions on putting the PowerSlide together, but the exercise instructions and demos were a little weak to be totally honest. You’ll be better off just using your own creativity to develop your own set of exercises. Plus, as a hockey player or coach, I’m sure you’ve got no shortage of skating drills that can be transferred to the PowerSlide!

Set up was a breeze. I unrolled the PowerSlide, attached the adjustable end piece so that it was a good length for me, tightened it down, and I was all set.

The PowerSlide consists of two end-piece assemblies (where you’ll be pushing off from), and a flexible slide mat. There’s an interesting design feature that I quite like on the PowerSlide. The end piece assemblies aren’t just flat, like most other slide boards. They are made using solid rubber “ramps” that enhance the grip underneath the slide board, and improve the pushing angle of your stride. This feature allows you to stride really hard, but stay very stable in the process.

The PowerSlide also comes with a carrying bag, and a set of booties to wear over-top of your shoes.

My Experience:
I decided to use my PowerSlide on top of my Dryland Flooring Tiles, which gave me tons of room for stickhandling and passing. It worked REALLY well! The only thing that surprised me was that the PowerSlide was SO grippy that they were causing the Dryland Tiles to shift a little bit against the garage floor!

Once I slid the tile set-up into the corner, it anchored itself down a bit better, and I didn’t slide anymore.

Using the PowerSlide was amazing… not only was it a lot of fun, but it was a FANTASTIC workout! In fact, you can see a bit of sweat on my face at the end of my video review 🙂 What’s even better though, is that it felt A LOT like the real thing. I was able to work on all sorts of skating, passing, and stickhandling combos, all in the “comfort” of my own garage!

Conclusion:
This was one of the funnest, most realistic set-ups I’ve had the chance to mess around with, and I definitely recommend adding this to your Home Hockey Training Center.

If you decide to pick up the PowerSlide, I would HIGHLY recommend grabbing a few other items while you’re at it… Here’s a quick list for you:

  1. Dryland Flooring Tiles or Roll-up Shooting Pad (both have HUGE surface areas)
  2. A few stickhandling pucks or balls
  3. Attack Triangle
  4. Sweethands
  5. Extreme Passer

Yes, you’ll spend a bit more upfront, but it will make your experience a lot more worth while in the long run.


YOU’RE INVITED… REGISTER TODAY!!

Most competitive teams do some sort of pre-season training camp to ensure that the players are primed and ready to go as soon as the season starts. This is great, and I’m a firm believer in this strategy!

Coaches must come to training camp with a plan, a goal, and a purpose if they intend to have any form of success during the regular season.

We have developed a FREE Specialized Online Training Course for Hockey Coaches, that will give them a chance to think about, and plan their seasons so they can hit the ground running come training camp.

The course will last 2 weeks and will be done via blog posts with videos, written instruction, and downloads.

Here are a few of the topics we’ll be discussing:

  • Coaching Philosophy
  • Defensive Zone Coverage
  • Breakouts
  • Offensive Attack Options
  • Forechecking
  • Regroups and Neutral Zone Play
  • Special Teams

SPREAD THE WORD ABOUT OUR COACHES TRAINING COURSE TO ENTER!

We would love to have you participate with us. The Training Course is FREE (just sign up below), and we are even giving away a few cool prizes for folks who help spread the word––including a free DrillDraw Pro license (the software I use to create all my videos) valued at $149!

UPDATE:

We just received word that Shooter Tutor is donating one of their “substitute goalies” for the giveaway (a $165 value)… so now we’ll be able to select TWO lucky winners (your odds just went up!)

I’ve been a HUGE fan of the Shooter Tutor since I was a kid. We had one set up in our yard during the summers and I spent endless hours shooting pucks with my buddies. When I started up my hockey school, the first thing I invested in was two Shooter Tutors… and they’ve lasted for years under intense use!!

Owning at least one Shooter Tutor is a must for any hockey coach.


UPDATE:

I couldn’t resist… I’m adding my own product to the giveaway. We’re throwing in an S3 Formula membership as our third prize (VALUED AT $147). The S3 Formula is my web-based strength and conditioning program, designed specifically for hockey players. We have players from all over the globe participating in the S3 Formula, and now you’ve got a chance to join in the action and get an incredible advantage over your opponent this year!

Our users have already had some phenomenal results using this program… check out this before and after shot of our buddy Nate Hymas (S3 user).

So, we have 3 prizes up for grabs now… we’ll pick our 3 winners on July 12th to kick off our Coaches Training Course. If you haven’t entered the giveaway yet, check out the instructions below!

HERE’S HOW TO ENTER THE GIVEAWAY (YOU MUST COMPLETE ALL 3 STEPS TO QUALIFY):

  1. Register for the Training Course using the form below
  2. Email (and copy me on the email for verification info@weisstechhockey.com) at least 5 of your favorite hockey friends about this course (your coaching staff is a great place to start). Send them to this post so they know what the course is all about.
  3. Stay tuned for the drawing on July 12th, the first day of our training course!

Talk soon!

Jeremy