Tips for Improving your Stickhandling

stickhandleOk, so hockey season is upon us yet again. And the weather is becoming quite chilly! This means, we have to find ways to entertain ourselves indoors. Well, if you’re a hockey player, like me, you do crazy things inside like practice your stick handling moves all over the house. All you need is a stick, a stick handling ball, and a few feet of hard floor.

Below, I’ve included a few quick tips to keep in mind when practicing your stick handling.

  1. Keep your top hand off your hip. Before you begin stick handling, extend your top hand away from your body. Shake it loose and try to relax. Never attach your top hand to your hip when stick handling. You will have more mobility and more reach if you keep it loose.
  2. Extend your reach! Do stick handling exercises that force you to reach far right, far left, far front, far back and around. This helps you get used to the rotational motion of puck handling which will help with puck protection.
  3. Look up! When you are practicing, make sure you look up and focus on something other than the ball or puck. Try watching a TV show or have a conversation with someone. Learn to feel the motion and trajectory of the ball on your stick. You don’t need to stare at it know where it is!
  4. Practice having soft hands! The softer your hands, the more easily and quickly you can properly execute a move.  Remember to provide cushion to the puck when you receive it back onto your stick and don’t forget to roll your wrists in the direction of the ball!
  5. Have fun with it! When you’re stick handling alone, you get to try new moves and mess them up without people judging! So, practice your toe drags, heels drags, around the world moves and quick fakes! Your muscle memory will kick in and eventually they will become second nature!

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