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[book review] The Hockey Drill Book

September 11, 2016 Leave a comment

 

Hi folks! I’m pleased to bring you another book review your way from the hockey world. This time, “The Hockey Drill Book”, by Dave Chambers. Boasting 500 drills to better the skills of every player on the ice, this book is a fantastic resource that would be advantageous to anyone coaching hockey at any level to possess. Every coach (and player) has a number of drills memorized that they’ll often repeat over and over at practices — dipping into Chambers “Drill Book” is a sure-fire way to expand a coach’s drill repertoire. 

“The Hockey Drill Book” gives coaches an astounding 500 drills to better develop and serve their team practices or single player sessions with. The book features 18 chapters worth of situation specific drills — everything from warm-ups, to odd and even man scenarios, breakouts, offense, defense, position focus, special teams, conditioning, skill evaluation, and even some fun drills and games (coaches of young kids should dog’s ear this section). Further, each drill presented features an illustrated diagram and easily understandable step-by-step instructions as to how the drill is to be carried out.

Each chapter is also prefaced with an introduction to the focus of each section, which provides helpful insight to the reader as to what the desired learning and development outcomes for each drill are. 

Additionally, the book is introduced with a Forward from Tom Renney, President and CEO of Hockey Canada. If Chambers and his book are good enough for the boss of the world’s #1 hockey nation, chances are this book will work for you too. 

A suggestion I would offer is that if there were to be a third edition of this book, is to include a DVD or something similar of the drills being carried out on the ice as a companion to the book for coaches and players who may learn better by seeing.

Whatever your reason for seeking a compendium of hockey drills, “The Hockey Drill Book” will undoubtedly prove to be an invaluable resource to you, no matter what point of your season or career you are picking it up in. I highly recommend this book to any hockey coach — veteran or new — looking for some fresh takes on skill development for his or her team. 

Enjoy!

SDC

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OFFICIAL PRESS RELEASE:

the-hockey-drill-bookThe best-selling hockey drill book returns, bigger and better than ever! Featuring 500 drills focusing on skill development, the second edition of The Hockey Drill Book is the most comprehensive resource for every hockey coach and player!

Whether you’re new to the game and seeking to develop and improve on the game’s most basic skills, or you’re a seasoned vet looking to take your game to new heights, The Hockey Drill Book is the ultimate collection of the top drills that you must add to your locker!

Author Dave Chambers has coached hockey for four decades at all levels, and in virtually every corner of the globe where the sport is played (the Russian Ice Hockey Federation translated and distributed the book to its coaches). This updated second edition of The Hockey Drill Book reflects the best 500 drills from hockey coaches worldwide, highlighted by 54 all-new drills. Accompanied by illustrations and diagrams, the drills focus on evaluating, developing, and improving players’ skills and technique at all positions and cover shooting, passing, goaltending, and skating. Additional drills improve players’ physical conditioning and in-game strategy and decision making for situations such as power plays, penalty kills, face-offs, and breakouts.

About the Author: 

authorchambersDave Chambers has coached hockey for more than 40 years from key developmental levels to the National Hockey League and international competition. His experience with all types of players and styles makes him well suited for teaching the ever-evolving game that is a blend of the European and North American styles. Chambers has won two gold medals in World Championships, five university championships, and five Coach of the Year awards. He was named Master Coach by the Canadian Hockey Association and was inducted into the York University (Toronto, Canada) Sports Hall of Fame in 2006 and the University of British Columbia Sports Hall of Fame in 2001.

Chambers was an assistant coach with NHL’s Minnesota North Stars and head coach of the Quebec Nordiques. He coached the Canadian national junior team to the gold medal at the World Junior Championship in Moscow in 1988, the Canadian team to the championship in the International Spengler Cup Tournament in Switzerland in 1987, and the Canadian student national team to the silver medal at the World Student Games in 1985.

His university coaching career spanned 14 seasons while he earned a record of 334-110. Chambers coached at the University of Saskatchewan and the University of Guelph before holding the head coaching position at Ohio State University, where he won the CCHA Championship. He then coached at York University in Toronto, where his teams won three division championships, three Ontario championships, and a Canadian National Championship.

Chambers holds a PhD in sport science and was director of the coaching program at York University in the School of Kinesiology and Health Science. Chambers has written books and articles on coaching ice hockey and has made numerous presentations worldwide. He lives in Collingwood, Ontario.

What Others Are Saying: 

“For more than 40 years Dave Chambers has been sharing his exceptional knowledge and wisdom as a coach, teacher, and specialist within the world of hockey. His brilliant forward-thinking instruction guides are long lasting yet new to coaches everywhere. He is a world-renowned student and teacher of the game and a man I admire and greatly respect. His information is useful to coaches everywhere.”

Lou Vairo — Director of Special Projects, USA Hockey

The Hockey Drill Book demonstrates Dave Chambers’ intimate knowledge of the game. He has the ability to simplify every skill set. This collection of drills is an absolute must for individual player and team development.”

Ken Hitchcock — Head Coach, St. Louis Blues

Sample chapters of the book: 

  1. A typical practice
  2. Neutral zone puck exchange
  3. Protect the puck and shoot for the goalie
  4. Power play breakouts and double double with a drop

Human Kinetics logo“The Hockey Drill Book” is available for purchase in paperback, Kindle, and e-book versions from the Human Kinetics bookstore and Amazon. You can also search for ISBN-10: 149252901X or ISBN-13: 9781492529019 through your favorite bookstore.

 

[book review] The Hockey Coaching Bible

December 13, 2015 2 comments

Hi folks! If you’re looking for gift ideas for the hockey coach in your life, or are wanting to build your own coaching skill set up, look no further than “The Hockey Coaching Bible” next time you’re in your favorite bookstore or shopping online. 

Editor Joe Bertagna teams up with 15 other current and/or former coaches to bring readers 16 chapters that each approach a unique sector of hockey. Individual skills for forwards, defencemen, and goaltenders are all addressed, as well as practice plans and drills for team skills like defensive, offensive, and neutral zone play (the included diagrams that accompany the drill descriptions are particularly helpful and thorough), as well as penalty kill and power play. Beyond the technical points of the sport, the book goes in depth on scouting opponents (both domestic and international), building a team from scratch and harnessing the support of the community, ethics behind the bench, and more off-ice topics. Basically, it all but goes out on the ice and does all the coaching for you.  

The only minor drawback to this book in my opinion is that it is set with a heavy slant towards NCAA/American hockey that some readers may not feel they relate to. With that being said, the skills and concepts taught in this book undeniably apply to all levels of hockey, and are easily adaptable to fit any coach’s current entry point to the game. It also does a great job of including female hockey into its presented narrative. I don’t hesitate to recommend this book to any current or aspiring coach, or to any current player looking to gain some sapience that he can bring to his or her team. Also, calling itself the hockey “bible” might be a little sensationalized, but it is a truly great and expansive resource, and a definite and necessary upgrade from its predecessors like “The Hockey Handbook” from the 1950’s. 

“The Hockey Coaching Bible” is an extremely helpful resource for any aspiring or current hockey coach. The insights found within it made me have to fetch my highlighter so I could highlight many profound sections that I wanted to be able to recall later. I have already put some of the book’s acumen into practice during my own coaching sessions. To continue to be good conveyors of knowledge, coaches and teachers of any kind should never stop learning — hockey coaches who add this book to their repertoire will give themselves a boost in this department for years to come.

-SDC

***WANNA WIN A COPY OF THIS BOOK? READ THROUGH THE REVIEW BELOW, AND FIND OUT HOW!***

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Featuring the insights, strategies, and experiences of the sport’s top coaches, The Hockey Coaching Bible sets a new standard for those who teach the game, develop the players, and dominate the ice. Whether head coach or assistant, at the youth level or professional, you will find a wealth of information to improve performance and strengthen your program.

You’ll go inside the game with 16 of hockey’s most respected teachers:

  • the hockey coaching bibleTom Anastos
  • Joe Bertagna
  • Mike Cavanaugh
  • Bill Cleary
  • Rick Comley
  • Mark Dennehy
  • Mike Eaves
  • Guy Gadowsky
  • George Gwozdecky
  • Nate Leaman
  • E.J. McGuire
  • Marty Palma
  • Jack Parker
  • Mike Schafer
  • Ben Smith
  • Hal Tearse

Every facet of coaching is covered. The book features the most effective drills for developing players at each position and in-game strategies for various game situations, including offensive, defensive, and neutral-zone play and power plays and penalty kills.

In addition to on-ice Xs and Os, you’ll find sage advice for building a program from the ground up, furthering your professional development as a coach, and gaining community and parental support for projecting a positive image and earning the respect of your players and supporters.

Never has there been a more comprehensive coaching resource on the game. With The Hockey Coaching Bible, you’ll build your program into a powerhouse.

About the Author:

BertagnaJoe Bertagna has been a collegiate hockey administrator for more than 30 years. Since 1997, he has served as commissioner of Hockey East, the preeminent conference in college hockey, whose member schools have earned seven NCAA championships under his leadership. Before his move to Hockey East, Bertagna served 15 years with the Eastern College Athletic Conference (ECAC), where he held the positions of tournament director, executive director, and commissioner. Both with ECAC and Hockey East, Bertagna has been a champion of women’s hockey, having initiated ECAC Division I and Division III league play and led the formation of the Women’s Hockey East Association, whose championship trophy is named in Bertagna’s honor.

In addition to his commissionership of Hockey East, Bertagna is executive director of the American Hockey Coaches Association, a position he has held since 1991. He also serves on the board of directors of both USA Hockey and the Hockey Humanitarian Award Foundation. For 40 years Bertagna has operated his own clinics for thousands of goalies of all ages.

 

Preview “The Hockey Coaching Bible” with these selected topical excerpts:

Respect for rules and officials: Tom Anastos — Michigan State Head Coach

Gap control: Jack Parker — Boston University

Practicing the power-play breakout: George Gwozdecky (Denver University) and Michael Zucker (Bench Metrics)

“The Hockey Coaching Bible” is available for purchase in Paperback, e-book, and Kindle versions from the Human Kinetics bookstore and Amazon. You can also search for ISBN-10: 0736062017 or ISBN-13: 978-0736062015 through your favorite bookstore.

Human Kinetics logo

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***TO WIN YOUR OWN COPY OF “The Hockey Coaching Bible”, DO THE FOLLOWING:
1. ANSWER THIS TRIVIA QUESTION: Who won the 2015 Jack Adams Award as the NHL’s coaching of the year?

2. TELL ME WHAT TEAM YOU CURRENTLY COACH, OR ASPIRE TO COACH (I want to give this to someone who needs it).

Good luck!***

 

[Archive] 2012 interview with Pat Quinn

August 12, 2014 Leave a comment

This 2012 interview with Pat Quinn posted to The Score’s Backhand Shelf blog on February 13th of that year. A former NHL coach to four teams and defenceman to three, Quinn made it clear in our conversation that he wanted to coach in the NHL again. While this hasn’t happened quite yet he has been busy since we talked — Quinn received the Order of Canada later that year, became the chairman of the Hockey Hall of Fame in 2013 (and assumably had a hand in Pat Burns finally receive induction into the Hall), and was inducted into the Vancouver Canucks’ Ring of Honor in 2014. 

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A short conversation with Pat Quinn

When you’ve been named the NHL’s Coach of the Year twice, won an Olympic gold medal, the World Cup of Hockey, two gold medals with Canada’s junior program, and guided multiple NHL clubs to their best seasons in modern history, having your team finish dead last in the NHL during the final season of your coaching career doesn’t seem to add up. Yet, this is what happened the last time Pat Quinn was seen behind the bench as the Edmonton Oilers’ head coach.

“We had some young kids that that were first round picks, but quite frankly I wasn’t sure that they were first round picks,” said Quinn of the Oilers. “I knew it wasn’t a good team when I took the job, but I took it with a plan to help them be better. That’s what I do. I’ve taken over teams that weren’t very good, and after a few years you get them better. I thought that was going to be what happened in Edmonton, but after the first year they decided to make a change. I’m not sure why, you’d have to ask them. I wasn’t ready for it. I wanted to complete the job that I was hired to do there. Unfortunately it didn’t happen.”

Some may make the case that Quinn and his coaching style/techniques were too “old-school” for players of the “New” NHL. At age 60, the St.Louis Blues’ current head coach Ken Hitchcock is a relatively good comparison piece for the 69 year-old Quinn, age and experience-wise. Hitchcock is currently behind an NHL bench for a sixteenth season, while Quinn was relieved after his twentieth. Both have coached over 1000 games in the NHL, and both have the grey hair to prove it. While Hitchcock may not have the Jack Adams Trophies and international success that Quinn acquired, he’s found a way to guide the St. Louis Blues to a 23-5-0-6 record, and place them third overall in the NHL since taking over – an accomplishment Quinn was not able to attain with this new generation of hockey player when he took over the Edmonton Oilers in 2009 and finished in the basement. Clearly it is possible for an older coach to get through to the new generation, and be successful.

“He took over a more mature team that was ready to win,” Quinn contended. “The Edmonton team wasn’t ready to win. He took over a much more mature team that has been in the playoffs several times in the last few years. He’s a coach that’s prepared, just like I am. Your circumstances often dictate a lot of things, and he stepped into a good spot. Hitch is a good coach — he was ready to help these guys, and they were ready to have a different voice in there. Clearly they’re responding well. I relate well with the young kids. I had Eberle, I had Hall. I had those kids. I can speak the language of hockey. The age group doesn’t matter.”

To be fair, Quinn has had success with teams comprised of young players – he guided Team Canada’s Under-18 team to a gold medal in 2008, and their Under-20 team to gold in 2009.

“I must admit, some of the best thrills I’ve had came from being around the kids the past few years.” recollected Quinn.

Quinn clearly still has a passion for the game of hockey, and to be involved in it – ideally as a coach. Unfortunately for now, it doesn’t appear any clubs are reaching out to acquire his services.

“I’ve got a void in there I’d like to fill,” Quinn admitted. “This life of mine has been all hockey for a long, long time, so when you’re not doing it anymore there’s a void there. I haven’t figured out how to fill it up yet, but I will. I’ve had a wonderful ride in this game. It’s given me so many thrills from the time I was a youngster. I’m lucky to be around it. [As far as NHL coaching offers]No, nothing. I think my ship has left the harbor.”

Quinn’s most recent coaching duties were played out at the 2012 CHL/NHL Prospects Game in Kelowna, BC on February 1st. Quinn, alongside Vancouver Giants’ head coach Don Hay, led Team Orr to victory over Team Cherry 2-1. Interesting that Quinn was chosen to head Team Orr, considering the speculatively dirty hit he delivered to Orr in 1969 that ignited a brawl between the Leafs and Bruins. Water under the bridge, I suppose. Quinn also serves as a co-chair of the Hockey Hall of Fame Selection Committee.

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