Hello my friends! I’m nearby the sea in Southern California. Unluckily, the weather is not so great today but we are going to talk about something exciting! Today I will go over the misconceptions and some fundamental drills that can really help you improve on puck handling. In this video, I will use golf balls and Green Biscuits for stick handling and use regular pucks as cones. Make sure to grab a used or cheap stick on concrete or asphalt surface. The rough surface can easily destroy your stick blades in 30 minutes of dryland practice. Or you can get the Hockey Wrap Around stick cover which I mentioned it in the previous blog for 10 Holiday Hockey Gifts Under $30.
Placement of Top Arm
Placement of your top arm is really important for the puck control. The most common mistake I’ve seen from my students is that they keep their top arms too close to their body and not drop their arms down. It will limit your range of motion and stop you from having a full arm extension. Btw enjoy my monkey dance lol!
Drills Drills Drills
The first drill is called Figure 8, which means you have to use puck to go around the cones and have a cross in between, like the shape of 8. The key point is to really turn the top hand over and keep your hand away from your body. The more advanced version of figure 8 drill is doing the puck handling work with just top hand and really strengthen it because that’s where most of the work been done.
The second drill is a combination drill. You have to let the ball/puck go around the far cone, go around the close cone, and then a figure 8.
The third drill looks really simple, just pulling the ball/puck through each cone and then going backward for the same pattern. However, even the professional National Hockey League uses this drill for their skill competition to test players’ basic stickhandling skills. Don’t get it tricked by how it looks. It is way harder to do than you expect.
For this drill, you need to let the ball/puck go all the way around the cone. Same key point for all the drills, making sure to roll your wrist over and have full range of motion with your top arm to have a better control.
Ok this time, let’s try to use one hand instead of two hands and really extend your arm side to side for a better reach. You can use green biscuit as a substitution of golf ball to add more weight to simulate the puck we use on the ice.
The last drill is toe drags, pulling the puck away to your body until reaching the cone and then using the toe of the blade to drag it back to your body. It is a great skill that you can show the defender where the puck is and quickly take it away.