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Enhancing hockey performance through mental and physical preparation

Hockey is a demanding discipline that requires both physical preparedness and mental fortitude. Therefore, to excel in this particular sport, you need to embrace a holistic approach that will equally strengthen the body and the mind. 

Bih Hockey Puck 608582 1280, British Ice Hockey

Hockey is a demanding discipline that requires both physical preparedness and mental fortitude. Therefore, to excel in this particular sport, you need to embrace a holistic approach that will equally strengthen the body and the mind. 

Take a look at the following techniques that combine mental health enhancement and physical training and start working hard on the improvement of your hockey skills:

Study the Game

During those times when you’re not playing, you should take a few moments to mentally train for hockey. First, invest time in research and reading. There are endless sources on the internet and in books that can tell you all about the strategy, training, mindfulness and nutrition that can boost your hockey skills. Whether you’re looking for ways to improve stickhandling or you’re curious about the key types of workouts you can embrace, theory can help you come a long way. 

Next, get into the habit of watching matches as much as you can. No matter what types of matches you’re drawn to, be it first-league games or local ones, try to soak in all the action that you can. Pay close attention to the game’s flow and analyse why an individual or the whole team went for a particular decision. 

Practice Mindfulness

When it comes to the factors that contribute to athletic performance, mindfulness is among the most underestimated ones. However, many successful hockey players meditate regularly, and almost all professional athletes turn to visualization.

Meditation is a great way to gain control over your breath and your thoughts. So if you begin to meditate even just once a day, you will be able to focus more and make better decisions during important games.

Visualization, on the other hand, is a method that helps maintain the focus and motivation needed to achieve athletic goals. For the sake of it, picture yourself taking a perfect shot, winning a faceoff, or anything else you’d like to achieve. The process will help you stay focused on the prize and you’ll stay hungry for success.

Play More Often

One of the best ways to get better at hockey is to engage yourself in the actual game whenever you can. For starters, show up to each team game there is. Next, try to organize casual games yourself. Invite your teammates, or even friends and family, and add a few more practice sessions to your schedule. 

Even without the guidance of a coach, playing regularly will help you train muscle memory, and it will help you build up on all the essential skills such as agility, balance, reaction time, and others. 

On top of that, adding more hockey time to your average week is a chance to perfect skating, work on your stance and rhythm, and improve possession, passing, and shooting. 

Train at Home or the Gym

While you’re off the rink, there are many ways to train and improve your physical preparedness. If home workout is your only option, you can still do wonders when building strength and getting your body used to demanding physical activity. 

But if you have access to a gym, there is a potential for even more advanced training. That way, you can easily target specific muscles and focus on activities that will make the most difference once you get on the ice. Endurance, strong legs, speed, agility, flexibility, and a firm core are essential for the success of hockey players. All in all, getting some exercise outside of the regular practice and games will give you an advantage over many other players.

Eat Healthy

Great hockey training happens not only on the rink and in the gym but also all the time. Every meal decision and each nutritional choice is a step towards a better or worse shape. The quality of your diet is one of the core components of top athletic performance, so make sure you’re eating as healthily as possible. 

On top of that, avoid being dehydrated during the day, even at times when you’re not training. As for the food, stay away from all processed, fried, salty, and sugary items. Of course, you can have a treat every once in a while, but at large, try to stick with veggies, lean protein, fruits, whole grains, and quality dairy. When drinks are concerned, try to have as much water as possible, and avoid sugary drinks at all costs.

Being an amazing hockey player and staying on top of your skills is a challenge for both the body and the mind. That is why you should consider introducing the ideas listed above into your regular training routine. By strengthening your mental and physical preparedness at once, you are sure to boost your overall performance and stay ahead of many competitors.

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