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Ultimate Guide to Coaching Youth Hockey


Coaching Youth Hockey Goalies

Your goalie is your final line of defense against the puck entering your team's net. While the goalie may not cover as much ground on the rink as the other players do, goalies still need to master many of the same skills. Like the other defensive players, goalies must be able to change their position quickly depending on the positions of the puck and the other players, so they must be as good on their skates as anyone else is.

Focus is sometimes a challenge for goalies. During some parts of the game, the action will all take place in the opposing team's end zone, meaning the goalie has little more to do than watch. However, watching the game is crucial because the puck could be passed from zone to zone in no time [source: Hersh]. Talk with your goalies about the importance of keeping their minds on the game, and provide them with concentration techniques, such as using their breath as a means to stay in the present moment.

Where your goalie stands in the goal depends on the positions of the other players -- both your team's defense and the other team's offense -- and the position of the puck. Because the puck can be passed quickly, the goalie should assume that any opposing offensive player could score. The goalie should choose a position where he or she could easily react to a shot from any player [source: Heinz].

The goalie is also the player that uses the most equipment. Keep reading to learn about youth hockey equipment.