As if I need more hockey in my life, I've discovered that the "other" local rink has an adult learn to play (LTP) program the happens while A is in school. The rink is in the same town so I'm able to take part, and I've been doing so all of this past week, and it's a load of fun. They meet twice a week along with the HS hockey coach DD, who also happens to run the rink. DD is clearly a hockey lover. I had heard about the program from a friend who does it. They meet for two hours and they not only do a lot of pick up hockey, but DD runs drills that are exactly like the ones we run for youth hockey. I'm guessing they're used now and then for high school, as well.
The nice thing about it is that we aren't just going out and playing out-of-control hockey, but we're getting some guidance and direction, as well. When I mentioned that DD is a coach, I meant he's the real deal. His HS teams are highly successful. What's interesting about DD also is that he's one of the nicest guys you'll ever meet. A lot of hockey coaches who are really into it can be over the top in their devotion, losing sight of the fact that this is a game and people were meant to have fun. I know more than my fair share, and they can be a little scary. I think their methods are effective in getting a lot out of the kids, but the question is, at what cost? A guy like DD reminds me of what I've read about the coach at Boston College, Jerry York, who supposedly never yells at the players and never loses it behind the bench.
Either way, DD is like that, and it makes the LTP a lot of fun because we are all on the upward part of the learning curve, and he doesn't make us feel like losers, even if we are. I include myself in this group. The first time I went they had a figure skating coach come out and do skating drills with us, then we played a pick up game for an hour. We only had 3 substitutes on our team so you can imagine how much I was sucking air, but what a great workout. The next time DD came out and ran us through several drills before we played again. It was a blast, and I came back the next week for more. Now I'm also playing in the adult league one night a week, and homeschool hockey on another. That's 4 days of pretty rigorous hockey, and even for me it might be too much. Somewhere I'll have to scale back because I just don't think I can handle all that hockey, even though I'd like to.
We'll see where this one goes. Until then, thanks for reading, and thanks to Ricky for the pic.