USA Hockey

2018 USA Hockey Parent Handbook

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DISTRICTS/AFFILIATES USA Hockey is divided into 12 geographical districts throughout the United States. Districts are organized with USA Hockey volunteer personnel to administer registration, risk management and coaching and officiating education programs. These programs include registration and training of coaches and officials. Districts volunteers also facilitate learn-to- play programs for youth players and their parents. Within those 12 districts, a total of 34 affiliates provide the governance. YOUR LOCAL ASSOCIATION Your local youth hockey association, which is the heartbeat of hockey in your community, builds on this foundation. USA Hockey supports these associations with tools and resources to help them excel. Local associations pour heart, soul, time and resources into creating a great hockey experience for youth players and their parents. Volunteers are the backbone of these associations, administering schedules, registration, fund-raising and overall management. They are at your service, donating time, energy and talent for the love of the game and community. They are your first point-of-contact for any questions and concerns. HOW THE GAME IS PLAYED Your local associations schedule and manage ice time, including practices, games, jamborees, tournaments, etc. Structure and philosophy varies from association to association, but USA Hockey provides age- and developmentally appropriate guidelines, based on ADM principles, at every step on the development ladder. At the 8U level, those guidelines include 50-60 ice sessions per season. The emphasis is on fun, fundamental skill development and practice, not winning or losing. Playing multiple sports is encouraged. The 8U experience recommended by USA Hockey includes no full-time goalies, 12 or fewer players per team, station-based practices and cross-ice games to maximize fun, puck touches and skill development for every player. Multiple teams should be on the ice for each session, making the most efficient use of ice time and maximizing skill-development opportunities. At the 10U level, USA Hockey recommends one goalie per team along with 10-12 skaters on the ice for 95-100 sessions. These sessions should include 75-80 quality practices and 20-25 game days. The 12U experience is similar to 10U but with an optimal goal of 12 skaters per team, two goalies and an increase in ice sessions. Smaller rosters ensure more playing time and more skill development for all. USA Hockey's recommended 14U and 16U experience includes an increase to 160 ice sessions, 16 skaters and two goalies per team, 120-130 quality practices and 40-50 games. At this stage, players should shift to a nine-month training calendar that also includes age-appropriate off-ice training. For 18U males and 19U females, USA Hockey recommends 200 ice sessions mixed with developmentally appropriate off-ice training over a 10-month training calendar. As these players continue to advance, they will move toward a training calendar that equally supports training and competition. THE STRUCTURE OF USA HOCKEY U S A H O C K E Y PA R E N T H A N D B O O K 1 7 "WHAT'S REALLY GOOD FOR KIDS IS TO GIVE THEM A VARIETY OF SPORTS; TO HAVE THEM TRAIN TO BE ATHLETES, NOT NECESSARILY TRAIN TO BE GOOD IN ONE SPORT. LET KIDS BE KIDS. LET THEM HAVE FUN." – P E T E R L AV I O L E T T E Stanley Cup-winning head coach, U.S. Olympian

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