Author Archive: Sticks

Unconventional Hockey Training

Strength, stamina, agility, focus and eye-hand coordination are all things a hockey player strives to keep strong in. However, what the world of hockey is starting to realize is that some of the most famous players have been using unusual methods for training.  That is not to say they are not doing the normal ice hockey training, but they are adding unconventional training methods to their offseason routines. This seems to be a merging trend and it’s not just in the world of hockey.

The best way to understand this is to just think of the movie the Karate Kid…. “wax on… wax off”.  Yes, I know you probably think RIDICULOUS!!! But there was some truth in Mr. Miyagi’s method that coaches and hockey players are turning too.

Here are some examples:

(1) SKATEBOARDING

Using a board for balance has been a hockey training technique, but what players are now doing is actually skateboarding! This enhances the feel and focuses more than just balancing on the board with a stick to help.

(2) CUTTING DOWN TREES

This is great for strength training. But what is even better is fresh air! Athletes spend way to much time in the gym and they will all tell you that! Having to swing an axe or even cut down a tree using a chainsaw is a fantastic upper body work out and will use new muscles that lifting weights won’t find. Just check out this guy cutting down a tree.  Look at his arms extended and the weight of the chainsaw he has to control, keep study and keep lifting for several minutes until the monster limb is down. Now that’s a workout!

(3) PLAYING OTHER SPORTS

Challenging muscle and mind to go down different paths will only enhance you as a hockey player. If during the offseason you only run and lift weights, then you are missing out on a tremendous opportunity to sharpen your mind and skills. Each sport uses the mind and muscles in a unique way. Don’t just focus on what a hockey player needs! Be sure and spend some time doing something “outside the box”. Trust me on this! Go back and listen to interviews of the professionals and what they do in their offseason and you will hear some strange past times, but they will tell you they believe it helps them become a better hockey player.

Bottomline is not to spend all your time focused on hockey driven training programs. Branch out!

Young Living Cool Azul Sports Gel

Okay.. we will admit.  This will seem like a strange post, but because of its weirdness, we feel it should be written.

Here’s the thing… hockey players take a beating, right?  It’s a rough sport and hard on the joints.  What we have learned is that several hockey players are turning to more natural remedies for relief.  It’s easy to become addicted to painkillers and players are smart today wanting to live a long and healthy life.  What they are using is this essential oils gel called Cool Azul.  The company Young Living makes this product and is known internationally for their high-quality essential oils.

Cool Azul Sports Gel… from Young Living: cool azul sports gel

Cool Azul™ Sports Gel is formulated with a full 10 percent of pure essential oils in every 3.4-oz. tube. Along with hydrating the skin, our sports gel boasts a topically cooling blend of Peppermint, Plectranthus Oregano, and Dorado Azul essential oils with menthol and camphor.

The naturally derived ingredients give Cool Azul Sports Gel a unique consistency that makes application convenient and easy for anyone, including physical, sports, and massage therapists alike. No matter your training or fitness level, Cool Azul Sports Gel is a perfect choice to use before or after physical activity.

Primary Features
• Formulated with 10 percent essential oils—a much higher percentage than most competitors
• Dorado Azul and Plectranthus Oregano essential oils are grown on Young Living farms
• Cool Azul Sports Gel has an invigorating yet relaxing aroma
• Aloe vera is a better formula base than water, which is found in many products

We are also finding out that hockey players are using these Young Living products for relief too:

Agilease Supplement
Ortho Sport® Massage Oil
Ortho Ease® Massage Oil
Deep Relief™ Roll-On
PanAway® Essential Oil Blend
Relieve It™ Essential Oil Blend
En-R-Gee Blend

Side note, although it should be another post, players are turning down energy drinks and using this oil blend called En-R-Gee. Hmm… maybe another post along with an interview with a hockey player is in order.

Until next time…

New Hockey Player to Watch

Andong Song’s story has the making of a Hollywood movie. It all started at age six at a Bejing shopping mall. Misha, as his friends call him went along with his friends one day to skate at the mall. And that’s all it took! He was taken with skating AND hockey! Soon Misha’s father, Yu Song, a real-estate executive, was coming home with hockey skates from a business trip to Russia. Friends from the U.S. were sending over sticks, helmets and other pieces of equipment. Misha started taking private skating lessons, then joined his friend’s team.

Now at age 18, Andong is a postgraduate student at Phillips Academy. He is only 6 ft tall and weighing 168 pounds. Not the size of a future NHL player. But, fast forward today and he is the first Chinese born player to be selected in the NHL draft. The New York Islanders picked him up in the sixth round of the draft. Charles Wang, the Islanders’ Shanghai-born owner, says the decision was strictly the call of his director of player development, Eric Cairns and the organizational scouting staff, not his birthplace.Andong had never heard of hockey but thought the Zamboni and equipment were cool. Strange that that is all it took to get him interested in the sport.

10 NHL Players to Watch as 2015-16 Contract Negotiations Begin

Several NHL players will be available at the end of the 2015-16 season. Superstars like Steven Stamkos and Anze Kopitar are being closely watched.  However, there are many other worthy hockey stars facing challenges in their upcoming contract years.

For instance, Eric Staal must decide if he’ll take less to remain with his current team.  And, he is not the only one in this situation.  Arizona Coyotes winger Mikkel Boedker is strongly considering joining a successful team.

Here are 10 NHL players that we are watching to see how their contract negotiations unfold:

David Backes
Milan Lucic
Tomas Plekanec
Alex Tanguay
Mikkel Boedker
Eric Staal
Loui Eriksson
Kyle Okposo
Keith Yandle
Ryan O’Reilly

Hockey Contracts… What Were They Thinking?

In the world of hockey.. or any other professional sport, contracts signed or not signed, start many conversations with sports enthusiasts.  In this post, we are going to highlight three of the worst contracts signed by hockey players.  Why doesn’t anyone of them ever consult a real attorney?  As one Houston contract law attorney put it, “Never ever sign a contract without having an attorney look at it”.  Well said!

Hockey contract #1: Nathan Horton, Columbus Blue Jackets: $5.3 million  (7 years)  He’s a forward with a Cup ring.  Well done!  However, he missed nearly half of 2011-2012 with a head injury and spent the first 40 games healing from an injury to his shoulder.  Is this guy REALLY worth the money?  Only time will tell… but fans do love him!

Hockey contract #2:  Ryane Clowe, New Jersey Devils: $4.85 million ( 5 years)  This guy’s large body is excellent at crashing and smashing his opponents with an occasional score. The Blue Devils loved that about him hence the nearly $25 million they gave him.  However, fans didn’t really care for this arrangement at the time since his health was an issue.  Fans were right since when he returned after injuries he didn’t do much for the team.

Hockey contract #3:  David Clarkson, Toronto Maple Leafs: $5.25 million (7 years)  Sometimes a contract seems good at the time, only later to be realized (insert hand slapping forehead) later it was a bad decision.  As Sports Illustrated put it “the money is unnerving, but the term is absolutely frightening.”

These are just a few of the many bad and insane contracts signed recently.  Fans are known for saying “What were they thinking!!!???”  What hockey players and GMs need to do is rethink the whole process and decision making that goes into hiring a professional hockey player. Duh?