Thursday, August 02, 2007

Winter Hockey Preparations

Determination; A fixed movement or tendency toward an object or end.

This is his week! He's DETERMINED!

Our son is eagerly preparing for the upcoming and fast approaching winter hockey season. But it’s only summer you say? I know, I know….

He’s been attending a “Hockey Conditioning Camp” this week, where I drive him to the arena for 4:20pm. every evening, and he completes his time somewhere around 8:15pm.

The camp has been fantastic to get the participants prepared physically for the upcoming season, offering skills and drills on the ice. Discipline is another benefit, for they need to ahve it along with determination to get through the tough sessions. Thrown into the mix have been mandatory breakout exercise rituals; crunches on the ice, lunges, push-ups and speed racing around the nets with a scrimmage ending the sessions.

On ice stretching is high on the
list for beginning each evening.

After a quick change into gym clothing, everyone is taken into the “dry land” hour where time stands at a snail's crawl, where groaning is not allowed. Each evening brings something new, but basically it begins and ends with laps around the local soccer field in the HOT evening sun.

Laps and more laps around the field.

In between, a trainer puts them through grueling routines, dozens more push ups, sit ups, leg and arm work, and basic all around VERY tough stuff! The second evening we sat outside and watched them all adhere to the Trainer’s instructions; running up and down hills, not just forward, but backwards, sideways and grabbing a partner, doing wheelbarrow races on their hands for arm work. Yesterday, they ran a circuit all around the ice arena, up and down stairs, sweating up a storm, moaning and feeling the burn all over.

Breakout lunges and racing back to the start.
Son's on the far right in the white shirt.

Often our older sons referred to these camps as the “bag skating” and “puke times” when it was so tremendously difficult they would throw up on ice, or into a nearby garbage can. Last night our son saw one guy do just that, throwing up after having something to eat too close to camp hours. We eat dinner at lunch to digest well for him beforehand.

When they both heard their younger brother was taking part in a conditioning camp, they both roared with laughter, knowing just what he would encounter and what sort of challenge lay ahead for him. All feel though it helped improve them, for pre-season jitters and allow them to get into shape fast, especially with rep team tryouts right around the corner some of the participants are working hard towards that possibility of being drafted to a travel team. Our son would love to take part on a higher caliber of hockey team level, and he will try out for it, pending though his father gets the medical suspension lifted from his driver’s license and chauffeur abilities can someday be shared with me again.

Looking good, but then, this is Day One.

He’s sweating hard, hobbling around good with stiff legs initially making Frankenstein famous, BUT it's amazing really...he keeps packing up and going back for more. It’s almost time to bring him tonight, so I’ll leave this writing with you for now.