COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. – USA Hockey announced today that the Colorado Select Girls Hockey Association, Kirkwood (Mo.) Youth Hockey Association and Kirkland (Wash.) Sno-King Hockey Association organizations have been named USA Hockey Model Association Programs.
With the designation, the three organizations have committed to follow the American Development Model in full at the 8-and-under, 10-and-under and 12-and-under age groups. The ADM is based on age-appropriate training to fully benefit children in their development, regardless of ability level.
"We commend these clubs for earning the model association distinction," said Kevin McLaughlin, senior director of hockey development for USA Hockey. "Their commitment to the ladder of development provided by USA Hockey ensures their kids won't be left behind and that every child, from rec to elite-level athletes, will have the programs in place to help them reach their full potential."
As a benefit of their model program designation, CSGHA, KYHA and Kirkland Sno-King will receive added support from USA Hockey to assist in implementing the ADM throughout their programs, including equipment, signage, and educational materials. Further, all three will receive on-going staff support from USA Hockey's national office, including in-depth coaches training that will commence in early September.
"I am 100 percent convinced that the ADM approach has made a significant impact on the skills development and fun factor for our kids," said Marnie Hill, director of hockey for CSGHA. "The number of puck touches, coach-to-player ratio and small-area game play have made our girls more confident and competitive. I believe these kids are getting to experience many concepts of the sport and have a better grasp of the 'hockey sense' it takes to play it."
"This is a credit to our 300+ families that make up our association," said Steve Williamson, president of KYHA. "Every season we look at what else we can implement from USA Hockey's ADM. I have never received a complaint based on fear of change. There is a culture of experimentation and process improvement here that will continue even with reaching this milestone."
"Since we implemented it in 2009, the ADM has been a tremendous success for our organization," said Doug Kirton, hockey director for the Kirkland Sno-Kings. "Our players enjoy the game more and their skills have improved. Enrollment and retention also have increased. We can't wait to see how strong our players will become as we work closer with USA Hockey's experts to help train our coaches and players. It is an exciting time for us as we look forward to the implementation of the ADM's long-term athlete development principles."
NOTES: The Model Association Program is open to any USA Hockey youth association with the support of the local USA Hockey Affiliate and an association review by the local ADM Regional Manager. Detailed information is available here ... The ADM, with full support from the NHL, was launched in January of 2009 to provide associations nationwide – for the first time ever - a blueprint for optimal athlete development. The ADM is based on age-appropriate training and uses long-term athlete development principles as its foundation ... The other USA Hockey Model Association Programs are Arvada (Colo.) Hockey Association, Colorado Springs Hockey Association, Kalamazoo (Mich.) Optimist Hockey Association, Kettler (Va.) Capitals, Montgomery (Md.) Youth Hockey Association, New Jersey Bandits and Orchard Lake (Mich.) United and San Jose Jr. Sharks.