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8U Q-and-A: Too early for off-ice?

07/13/2017, 3:30pm MDT
By Scott Paluch

Q: Is it too early to begin off-ice training at 8U?

A: Absolutely not. In fact, most experts in physical education encourage all youth to be very active in the ABCs (agility, balance and coordination). This is the perfect stage in a young athlete’s development to be working on these principles. We have a great forum as youth sport coaches and parents to provide these activities to all young hockey players. The ability to supplement an on-ice training night with 30 minutes of fun, age-appropriate off-ice drills can go a long way in helping a young player develop athletically. Just make sure it’s fun and age-appropriate. At 8U, there should never be anything more than body weight involved, nor is it the right time physiologically for long, grueling endurance challenges.

USA Hockey has many fun and age-appropriate off-ice drills available here.

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