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PLAYER DEVELOPMENT

"People would say, 'Girls don't play hockey. Girls don't skate.' I would say, 'Watch this.'"

Hayley Wickenheiser

"Somewhere behind the athlete you’ve become and the hours of practice and the coaches who have pushed you is a little girl who fell in love with the game and never looked back. Play for her."

Mia Hamm

"Youth sports participation is linked to substantial physical, social-emotional, and achievement-related benefits. For girls in particular, research consistently demonstrates sports participation is linked to their improved physical and mental health; academic achievement; and increased levels of body esteem, confidence, and mastery, with some indication that girls reap greater benefits from sports participation than do boys."

Coaching Through a Gender Lens: Maximizing Girls’ Play and Potential
WOMEN'S SPORTS FOUNDATION

ASSOCIATION PROGRAMS

Jr. Inferno First Strides Program

This learn-to-play hockey program is for girls aged 4-8 who have limited or no skating experience and want to play hockey for the first time. First Strides includes 16 on-ice sessions on Saturday mornings beginning October 2019. The registration fee is $300.

This fun, positive introductory program focuses on preparing players for hockey through skill development and small area games. There are no formal hockey games, tournaments or travel.

For more information, visit our Jr. Inferno First Strides page.

Intro to Hockey Model

Hockey Alberta has finalized the Intro to Hockey Model, which provides the general structural and administrative guidelines and specific playing rules for all players ages 5-8 years. These rules and guidelines are required for all Initiation and Novice level hockey in Alberta effective for the 2019/20 season.

The purpose of this model is to address the need for more skill development in the novice age category, to provide a positive environment for learning the fundamentals of hockey, and to stimulate interest and desire to continue playing the game of hockey.

Read more:

Skill Sequence Program

GHC has introduced a Skill Sequence Training program designed to address a gap in the foundational skating and puck control skills of our players. The intention of this program is to minimize the spread of skill within our teams, and to promote a consistency in our coaching language and instruction delivery.

This program has been researched and designed by a group of passionate coaches, with the help of leading hockey experts, in order to meet the unique skill development needs of our female hockey players. It is a volunteer-based program that is delivered, modified and measured at no cost to GHC teams.

On-Ice Development (Initiation & Novice)

GHC has partnered with P3 Sports Inc to provide on-ice team training sessions to our Jr. Inferno Community teams in Initiation (Timbits) and Novice. GHC's goal in partnering with P3 is to identify age-specific skill progressions and teaching points, to maximize coach and player development, and to promote a positive hockey experience for our players.

As per Hockey Canada development guidelines, younger age groups (Initiation & Novice) benefit from development initiatives that focus on on-ice fundamentals. P3 training programming helps young athletes learn and practice proper technique while developing muscle memory that leads to increased balance, speed, edge control and confidence.

Access to P3 resources and programming is provided to Initiation (Timbits) and Novice teams through the GHC Team Development Fund.

Off-Ice Development (Community Atom+)

GHC has partnered with The Athlete Factory to provide off-ice team training sessions to our Jr. Inferno Community teams in Atom, PeeWee, Bantam and Midget.

The Athlete Factory's youth training programs aim to establish correct movement patterns, develop a commitment and discipline to conditioning, and ensure proper strength and stability to minimize and prevent injuries.

GHC will cover the cost of Athlete Factory Team Training Sessions for Jr Inferno Atom, PeeWee, Bantam and Midget teams up to $500 through the GHC Team Development Fund.

All Female Divisions

In Atom and PeeWee, GHC has "tiered" teams that play in Hockey Calgary's Alberta One Standardized Tiering Model, as well as teams that play in Hockey Calgary's All Female Divisions (AFD). All Bantam and Midget community teams compete in Hockey Calgary AFDs.

Teams in AFDs are balanced by skill and, when possible, geography. Teams compete against the other GHC teams in their division as opposed to co-ed community teams. The intention is to maximize skill development, competitiveness and consistency.

AFD teams have the same practice and game allotments as all other Hockey Calgary teams for their age group, and participate in tournaments, ESSO Minor Hockey Week, City Championships and Provincials.

Conditioning and ID Camps

GHC's Calgary Fire Elite Female Hockey Program hosts Spring Identification Camps for potential elite players. This is an opportunity for athletes to experience an elite level of hockey and learn more about our Calgary Fire program. It also gives Calgary Fire coaches an opportunity to meet potential players and identify the skill level for the upcoming season.

GHC also hosts pre-season conditioning camps for registered players from Novice to Midget AAA. These camps take place in late summer leading up to the evaluation schedule. Registration for conditioning camps is available at the time of league registration.

Participation in our pre-season conditioning camps and Spring ID camps is not required in order to register for GHC.

PARTNERS IN TEAM TRAINING

Goaltender Development Program

DaveHolland_WickfestGoalie2

GHC is committed to trying some new development initiatives this season. This will be a transition year as we move towards a better developmental model. We are proud to offer a “hybrid” development program this season blending consistency and flexibility.

  • Monday night development sessions with Top Prospects will create a greater camaraderie and consistency for our goalies, and will help develop our goalie coaches.
  • GDI development sessions will give our goalies the flexibility to tailor their own additional training as needed.

We will be reaching out to you closer to Christmas to get your feedback on these initiatives. We hope that these goalie development programs combine to help your daughter reach her next level and beyond.

TPG_Logo

1. Top Prospects Goalie Development Sessions

GHC is proud to partner with Top Prospect Goaltending Consultants as they are Alberta’s only goalie consulting company with a priority focus on the female game. They are the goalie consultants for Team Canada and Team Alberta. Their dedication to female goalie development is a natural fit for Girls Hockey Calgary.

Monday Sessions

Every GHC goalie will have the opportunity for at least 1 professional session per month:

Mondays 7:45-8:45 pm*
Hockey Development Centre
#117, 10710 25th Street NE
*Alternate Atom/PeeWee and Bantam Midget every other week.

We have secured ice at the Hockey Development Centre (HDC) for weekly Goalie Clinics. The facility can accommodate 9 goalies on the ice with 3 GHC-supplied Goalie coaches. The clinics will be run by 2 Goaltending Consultants from Top Prospects.

Consistent ice is very difficult to get in the city so with apologies to those who live in the deep south, it was a very good opportunity getting this day and time. (Not as many games/practices are scheduled on Mondays.) This is a “pilot project” with potential for greater future frequency so your help in driving it’s success is very important.

"Pop-Up" Sessions

We will also be offering some “pop-up” sessions with Top Prospect Goaltending Consultants as extra ice comes available. Please keep a close eye on your email for those opportunities throughout the season.

You an email with instructions on how to sign up once registration opens.

TPG Consultants for Community Team Practices

Top Prospects Goaltending has given us a preferred rate if goalie families wish to book them to come to any of your community team practices. Please work with both your goalie coach / head coach when doing so. Your goalie coach and the TPG consultant should work side by side so that learning is shared. Your Head Coach should make space on the ice and an applicable practice plan.

Book a TPG Consultant for your Practice here. Use Promo Code “nextlevel” to get the GHC preferred rate. Valid until March 15th.

2. GDI Goalie Development Sessions

Each one of our full-time goalies will receive 5 free half-hour sessions with GDI.

To use your free sessions, used the link provided below. You may need to create your profile using the “primary email address” you entered on your GHC registration this season. Your profile will show that you have 5 lessons pre-loaded to use anytime between October 1, 2019 and March 15, 2020. You now have the flexibility to manage these as needed throughout the season.

*Credits are being loaded into GDI’s system this week. You will be advised when you can start booking.

Book Session with GDI

3. Goalie Coach Development

We will partner our Goalie coaches during the weekly development sessions with Top Prospects to teach them tactics to extend to their own community practices. We strongly feel that our Goalie Coaches are under-utilized and should be an extension of the professionals. This is a great way to expand their toolkits.

We will utilize the board room at HDC for some pre-practice chalk talk for our goalie coaches as presented by Top Prospects with goalie coach-centric learning.

Communication to our Head Coaches with helpful tips on better utilizing our goalies will be going out to them throughout the season. We want to ensure your daughter’s practice time is maximized to its fullest. She should never be standing around or without direction. We will work with our head coaches to better engage their goalies.

4. Equipment Loans

Equipment loans are available to goalies in the younger age groups and limited equipment loans in the older age groups. If the loans are issued a postdated deposit cheque of $400 (Feb 28, 2019) will be required to ensure the loan is returned.

5. Registration Fee Rebate Program

Our association offers all returning goalies a rebate on next season’s fees. If you pay out of pocket for any Goalie Development for your daughter, please keep your receipts. This means any development where the cost was not covered by GHC. Valid receipt must be from an accredited Goalie Program (TPG, GDI, World Pro, Evolution, David Marcoux, Fisher, etc). If it’s not on this list please contact the GHC Goalie Development Coorindator for approval. Your receipts must total at least $500. Once registration opens next summer you can select the “pay by cheque” option when registering. Then scan, email your receipts to Corinne at registrar@girlshockeycalgary.com. She will cut your goalie’s registration fees in half. So that’s a $500+ rebate for all returning goalies!

*Calgary Fire players are not eligible for the rebate program.

6. Monthly Novice Goalie Clinics

Next year we forecast to have only 2 goalies in all of Atom. So, we are proactively targeting Novice level girls who have an interest in becoming a full-time goalie next season and beyond.

We will be hosting monthly Novice goalie clinics to give those interested girls a chance to attend a true clinic with the professionals. We will work closely with all Novice head coaches and goalie coaches regarding this program. Please spread the word - if you know of someone who might be interested let them know there is great opportunity next season.

Annual Grow the Game Initiative

For the fourth year in a row, more than 150 female hockey players took the ice at ECTAS for our FREE Grow the Game event on March 3, 2019.

GHC coaching staff and members of GHC's Calgary Fire Elite teams ran three back-to-back sessions for new and experienced hockey players to learn more about the female game.

GHC also hosted a free Goalie Clinic for young Novice/Atom goalies on Sunday, as part of our effort to make goaltender growth and development a priority. Top Prospects Goaltending ran the event with special guest CHWL Calgary Inferno goalie Annie Belanger.

Thank you to the organizers, volunteers and sponsors who support these events!

Check back in January 2020 for information on our next event!

Hockey Xtra Tells Our Story

Watch Hockey Xtra Show's episode, "Grow the Game with Girls Hockey Calgary"

Photo: Dave Holland
Photo: Dave Holland

Wickenheiser World Female Hockey Festival (WICKFEST)

Photo: Dave Holland
Photo: Dave Holland
WickFest_Logo

GHC is an official partner with WickFest, Hayley Wickenheiser's annual female hockey festival. This year, the festival is celebrating its 10th Anniversary.

November 14-17, 2019
Bantam and Midget

November 21-24, 2019
Novice, Atom, Peewee, Elite

Registration is now open!

Pre-Application Opens April 5, 2019.

Additional Events & Programs

The following organizations offer annual events for female athletes in Calgary. Please note, links are for informational purposes only and do not necessarily imply the endorsement of GHC.

Hockey Calgary Leadership Day

IIHF Women's Hockey

Grindstone Award Foundation

This Girl Can Expo

Fast and Female

Hockey Canada Esso Fun Days

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