How to Choose Hockey Training Books

Step-by-step Instructions

Here is what you need to do...
Step 1

Step one in choosing the right hockey training book for you is identifying your training need. Whether for on-ice or dry-land training, there are plenty of manuals and drill exercises available, while specific skill set training books are also available.

Step 2

Step two in choosing the right hockey training book for you is determining the focus of your training once you have identified your training need. This focus may be related to a specific skill (need to improve skating, shooting, stickhandling, etc.), to increase endurance, agility or stamina (training programs and conditioning regimens) or to gain strength and muscle(weight and diet programs).

Step 3

If you plan on choosing a hockey training book designed to help you with a specific skill set, it is recommended that you stick with some of the more popular, tried, tested and true methods. For example, for improved stickhandling, it would be best to use Newell Brown and Vern Stenlund’s “Hockey Drills for Scoring”. Likewise, if you wish to improve your skating, reading Laura Stramm’s “Power Skating â€" 4th edition” is an excellent tool in helping develop proper skating techniques.

Step 4

If you plan on choosing a hockey training book designed specifically to help improve your play in a specific position or to improve your conditioning, it would be best to focus on more direct and technical manuals such as “The Hockey Goalie’s Comprehensive Guide: An Indispensable Development Tool” by NHL goaltending coach, Francois Allaire, as this guide reflects what will be required of an aspiring player if they wish to make it to the professional ranks. In a similar light, age specific training books are important for developing players, especially children, which is why Zdenek Pavlis’ “Hockey Training for Kids” is an ideal starting point for helping your youngster understand the fundamentals of the game. For general training programs and exercises to improve overall conditioning, Peter Twist’s “Complete Conditioning for Hockey” and the “52 Week Hockey Training” manual from Don McAdam and Gail Reynolds are perfect hockey training starter books.

Step 5

If you plan on choosing a hockey training book designed to help improve your strength; via toning, gaining muscle mass or diet, it is recommended you begin with two classics from Michael A. Smith, “The Hockey Playbook: Teaching Hockey Systems,” and “Dryland Training for Hockey.” These hockey training books are ideal for making sure a player will cover all the basics before moving on to advanced techniques. This also helps the player build a solid foundation of muscle without risking injury. Furthering the development of these basic training techniques, Price Rob’s “Ultimate Gt Weight Training/Hockey” edition will gently ease a player in training from the basic methods into more advanced and goal specific exercises.

Step 6

The sixth and most important step in choosing a hockey training book is to be open to the many options available. Sometimes a specific writer’s training techniques may not meet your desired needs, yet there is always likely another with a method that is just right for you. In this vein, it is best to consider purchasing more than one hockey training book so as to best educate yourself on the most commonly used and most beneficial exercises.

Special Attention

Difficulties people often experience or parts that need special attention to do it right.

The only real difficulty in choosing the right hockey training book for you lies in personal taste. As mentioned in Step six, there is always the chance that the intended training techniques do not meet your standards, which is why it's encouraged that players in training explore as many various methods as possible (read as many training books as possible to find what is right for you). The truth in finding the right technique for your specific training need lies in researching the available data and personalizing it to fit your individual needs.

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Funny or interesting story about this topic...

Until recently, it was rather hard to find a succinct, well written hockey training book. Few and far between, training information was often handed down through hand-scrawled notebooks as coaches passed tried, tested and true techniques and methods down through the generations. Today, many of those hand scribbled notebooks have been converted into finely detailed hockey training books that focus on every specific training element you would ever want to focus on. With the inclusion of sports medicine into the interpretation of training methods and techniques, hockey training books today are among the most useful tools in an aspiring player's arsenal.

When did you first do this & how did you get started?

I first learned of hockey training books by reading the series of children's hockey books by Brian McFarlane about the "Mitchell Brothers." In reading of their adventures playing their way through the world of hockey, McFarlane's writings were the first I ever read that delivered detailed hockey instructions, including developing an understanding of many of the important elements required for successful hockey training. Although disguised as fiction, these books taught me many lessons and eventually led me to hockey training books, many of which are listed below.

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