It is a well-known fact that hockey players need to train both on and off the ice. However, it can be difficult for hockey players to find quality off-ice training for their workouts. The best off-ice hockey training aids are the ones that help you train your skills in a fun and engaging way.
In this blog post, we will look at 10 of the best off ice hockey training aids for hockey players that you can use to improve your skills off the ice.
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Why is off-ice training important for hockey players?
Hockey is a sport where most of the work is done with your legs and lower body, so being strong in this area is crucial for improving your on-ice performance. Improving your leg strength will not only help you become a better hockey player, but it will also make you more injury resistant.
Off-ice training allows players to focus on strengthening their legs without worrying about impacting their ice time when they are practicing by themselves. This is why hockey players need to use good off-ice training equipment to maximize their results in a fun way.
There are also many training aids to help with stick handling, pass training and even shooting to ensure when you can get on the ice, you are ready. So let’s get stuck in.
10 of the best off ice hockey training aids
1. Hockey training slide board
A hockey training slide board is perfect for any hockey player that wants to train their shooting, passing, and stickhandling skills. Some sliding boards even come with hole patterns on the surface that are designed to closely resemble the face-off dots that you will find at an ice rink.
Hockey players can use this training aid to work on shooting accuracy, skating speed, and agility by taking shots while moving up and down the sliding track.
This can be done on both drylands and at the beach, meaning that you can practice your skills no matter where you are. By working on their shooting accuracy with this slide board, players can increase their shooting velocity and improve their shot power and accuracy.
How a hockey training slide board improves your skills
- It enhances shooting
- Train accuracy of shots
- Train skating speed
- Enhances agility
- Train stickhandling skills
2. Hockey shooting pad
A hockey shooting board is a great training aid for any hockey player who wants to work on the accuracy and power of their shots. In addition, the one-time purchase price for this product makes it very appealing compared to purchasing new shooting pads every few months.
You can try this training aid out in your driveway, basement, or backyard. This makes it nice to have around even if you don’t use it all the time. The hockey shooting board is made of high-density polyethene material for durability and ease of portability.
A hockey shooting board will assist you in shooting the puck harder and more accurately. You can improve your wrist shot accuracy and strength by shooting hundreds (if not thousands) of pucks at this training aid.
How a hockey shooting board improves your skills
- It enhances hand-eye coordination
- Train wrist shot accuracy and power
- Improve stickhandling skills
- Improves shooting skills
- You may want to read: Top 5 hockey shooting pads
3. Stickhandling training aid
Hockey stickhandling training aids are perfect for developing hockey players of any age. The products will come with a complete tutorial, which means that you can learn how to use them properly and safely. Not will they help increase your strength and flexibility, but also help to improve hand-eye coordination and body control as well.
Stickhandling drills training can improve your hand speed and reaction time while increasing weight shift coordination, a great example of this is the SuperDeker training system. The benefits of using this product can help you get a leg up on the competition to really stand out on the ice, so it is a tool that you need to have in your arsenal.
Some of the ways you can use this device include working on puck protection, decking, passing, receiving, shooting accuracy and power, and endurance. However, some customers have noted that they feel this device tends to break more quickly than others within the same price range.
How a stickhandling aid improves your skills
- Improve puck protection skills
- Train deking ability
- Adds power to shots
- Improves endurance
- Increases vision accuracy
- Faster reaction time
- Increase passing power, speed, and accuracy
4. Practice puck passing training aid
Want to improve your puck passing skills? A Puck Passing Training Aid is a great way to practice one-timers without having a training partner. It’s also perfect for improving your stickhandling and passing skills at home, no matter what season it is.
Most Puck Passing Training Aids will have adjustable resistance levels to allow you to practice quick release shots while also improving foot speed, agility, and endurance at the same time.
How a practice rebound board can improve your skills
- Train hand-eye coordination
- Improve stickhandling practice
- Improves shot accuracy
- Train faster foot speed
- Increases body weight shift coordination
- Improve solo or group passing ability
5. Training goal
As you would expect, a training goal aid is used for practicing shooting and is great to have around if you are an avid backyard rink player.
A training goal aid will help you work on every aspect of your game, depending upon where you are using it in your routine. You can use this anywhere from inside your garage or basement. It works well with practice shooting pads or synthetic ice at home or during solo sessions because of its durability and portability.
How a training goal improves your skills
- Train wrist shot power and accuracy
- Improve slap hockey shot power and accuracy
- Improve 5-hole shooting accuracy and power
- Training trapper to improve rebound control
- Train stickhandling ability, body positioning, and angle changes
- Increase passing speed and accuracy
- Improves endurance by making users work harder to get shots off on time
- Enhance hand-eye coordination
6. Magnetic shooting targets aid
The magnetic shooting targets are great to use on the ice or off of it. Not only can you practice your shots, but they can be used to improve stickhandling ball and deking ability as well. These targets come in various sizes and price points that will fit into almost any budget plan.
Magnetic shooting targets will help you work on many different aspects of your game, such as shooting accuracy, deking, and stickhandling drills. They are good to use if you do not have much space around you for shooting or stickhandling purposes.
You can use these targets in your basement, garage, driveway, on the ice, and even at outdoor rinks. So you won’t need a lot of room to work on various your hockey skills with these magnetic targets.
How magnetic shooting targets will improve your skills
- Train wrist shot power and accuracy
- Improves one-timer accuracy and speed
- Increase stamina
- Improve slap shots power and accuracy
- Increase 5-hole shooting accuracy and power
- Enhance hand-eye coordination with target following ability
- Improve passing accuracy with head up targeting ability
7. Balance board
Balance board trainers are great for all different types of balance drills, but they are also helpful to improve control and stickhandling ball and stick skills.
The balance board trainer is excellent to use when you are away from the rink or don’t have ice time available. With this versatile product, you can work on your balance and combine with some of the aforementioned products to really improve hand-eye coordination, practice passing, quick feet, and hockey control in the comfort of your own home.
How balance boards can improve your skills
- Increase hand-eye coordination and quick feet
- Traning agility with balance drills
- Improve passing skills with accuracy with head up targeting ability
- Improve leg power from standing foot to skating stride
- Increase shooting velocity and accuracy from standing position on ice or off of it
- Improve one-timer accuracy and speed
8. Home gym equipment
One thing about playing ice hockey is you have to be fit. If you really want to stay on peak condition, then you should consider getting a home gym.
Home gyms are great for improving your strength and endurance because they allow you to workout at your own pace without having to worry about other people in the gym. They also provide an excellent way of staying motivated because it’s easy to see how much progress you’ve made over time.
With just a few pieces of equipment, you can build an incredible home gym that will provide you with plenty of opportunities for your workouts. In addition, you won’t have to worry about fitting into the small locker room showers anymore if you have a private facility available at home!
You can have some of the following equipment at home
- Plyometric Box
- Medicine Balls
- Olympic Lifting Platform with Bar Holder
- Exercise Matts
- Weightlifting Belt/Straps/Gloves
- Speed Ladder or Agility Cones
- Yoga ball
- Skipping rope
Having home gym equipment will allow you to train effectively, reduce your time at the rink, and improve many aspects of your hockey game.
9. Books for mental development
Good books about ice hockey are a great way to learn a variety of information related to the sport, especially during off-season or even while on the toilet.
There is quite a bit of required theory to excel in sports such as hockey, and books can be very helpful for this purpose. But, unfortunately, so many athletes fail to recognize the importance of mental training to achieve their maximum potential.
Mental development books will help you overcome adversity, enhance your focus and concentration, gain clarity on what you want out of life, and improve your confidence levels. In addition, you will be able to take these skills that they teach in sports psychology books and apply them right away at the rink or on the ice in games.
How books improve your game
- Enhance mental toughness
- Increase motivation and confidence
- Enhance focus and concentration
- Improve clarity on what you want out of life and make better decision making choices as a result
- Reduce pre-game and post-game stress and anxiety that leads to negative performance results
10. Synthetic ice
Synthetic ice is a great product that you can install in your home to improve your hockey skills. There are several different products available on the market, but they all have their advantages and disadvantages.
The main disadvantage is that some are not big enough to transition from forwarding strides into backward skating strides. This will limit you to practicing only certain drills with the synthetic ice product.
Some advantages include using it on any surface, including carpet or concrete, so there isn’t much installation or preparation required before using it. Like most good training aids, you need to roll them out and go!
Synthetic ice is the best way to improve your ice hockey and skating skills at home because it is convenient and can be used to practice any drill that you want. It is also a great way to simulate the feel of on-ice practise without actually being on an ice rink.
How synthetic ice will help you
- You will develop better edge control while using this product
- Improve puck control while moving in multiple directions
- Increase leg strength by pushing off on the landings after jumps, strides, or crossovers
- Increases foot speed when transitioning from forwarding strides to backward strides
- Improves core stability during training sessions
- Improves coordination with added surface area for multi-directional movement
- Increase power output with increased resistance
- Enhance balance with fast changes in direction and jumping mechanics
FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions)
How do I improve my hockey skills off-ice?
Having the right training equipment available for practice is key to improve your skills off-ice. Make sure that you have a variety of products readily available to use every day.
Which hockey training aids should I get?
Most athletes who are looking to improve their hockey skills will benefit from having synthetic ice, plyometric box, medicine balls, hockey passing aid, kettlebells, hockey sauce kit, weightlifting belts/straps/gloves, Olympic lifting platform with bar holder, exercise mats, speed ladder, or agility cones, and yoga ball. These items will give you the greatest overall coverage when it comes to improving your skills off-ice.
How do I use off-ice training equipment to improve my hockey skills?
Make sure that you have a solid warm-up routine before starting any practice session. Stretching, endurance, and speed drills should be done before getting too much into the power zone with weights or plyometrics.
All of these off-ice training aids are great ways to improve your game and make you a better player on the ice. With all of this equipment available, there is no reason why you can’t stay on top of your game year-round!
Do you have any of your ideas or practices that you want to share? Then, do let me know in the comments below.