In-season hockey dryland & on-ice training

World-renowned pianist Vladimir Horowitz once said, “The difference between ordinary and extraordinary is practice.”

I’m inclined to agree. Perfection comes only on the heels of hard work, and that there’s no substitute for hours deep in the maintenance of our passion, whether it be seated in front of a grand piano, or flying atop the ice at the local rink.

Hockey is like no other discipline. There are very few sports out there that require such a high degree of physical conditioning. To be extraordinary, in addition to incredible technical skill, your body needs to be tuned like a Formula car, with all of your muscle groups firing explosively and continuously.

The speed and aggression of hockey requires strength, agility, stamina, and the ability to stave off massive blows and keep on trucking. Following is what my guys recommend for any players looking for an in-season routine that’ll make sure you’re firing on all cylinders both in and between games.

Before we get into the exercises, let’s pull back a bit and look at the workouts. In-season, games and practices can tire you out – maybe you’re thinking, “I don’t need to do extra stuff, and if I do, I might burn out.” Well, that’s a great point. The trick is that you need to strike a good balance. You need to focus only on what you need most – train smart, and limit workouts to no more than 3 a week. Your work-outs should be focused on low reps with heavier loads, to build strength and power.

Let’s get to it.

1. BB Split Squat:

With BB in squat position on back, perform a squat in lunge position keeping your quadriceps activated for the duration of the exercise.

2. Reverse Lunge to Step:

From a standing position, transition into a full-range reverse lunge. Coming out of the reverse lunge, place your foot onto an elevated surface and perform a step-up.

3. BB Front Squat:

BB is placed in the front position, and a normal squat is performed. Quadriceps should be dominant in this position.

4. Supinated BB Row:

Set up BB an arm’s length away from the body while lying on the ground in a supinated position (on bail). With your arms shoulder-width apart, grip the bar over hand, and pull your body up towards the bar while focusing on scapula retraction.

5. MB Lateral Slam:

Standing parallel to a wall, rotate and laterally slam/catch a medicine ball against the wall. Focus on core rotation and activation.

Finally, at least once each day, get a tune up – go for a massage, or do some foam rolling or stretching routines, and spend at least 20 minutes doing it. Your muscles will be more limber, and I guarantee you’ll feel less pain after each game.

When you get a chance, come on into the gym; I’d love to hear your opinion on what’s working and what isn’t, and about how we can improve to better serve your needs.

About the Author

Matthew Korobanik is a partner of multiple Anytime Fitness franchises in Edmonton. For more information, check out

Anytime Fitness has two locations for your convenience: Old Strathcona (10469-80 Ave.) and Kingsway (10521 Kingsway Ave.)

#hockey #training #fitness

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