Monday, April 26, 2010

Advice From a Net Vet Mom

Jacob, at age 8

For what it’s worth…my advice to new goalie parents…

by goalie mom Diane Pelton

As I sat down to think what advice I would like to give to goalie parents just starting out my first thought was, “save up your money!” But in all seriousness, start by realizing that your son or daughter is taking on one of the most demanding, high pressure positions in all of sports. When a goalie
makes a mistake it ends up on the scoreboard for everyone to see. They have to make split second decisions that immediately affect the outcome of the game. I have learned many things watching my oldest son Jacob grow both as a young man and goaltender.

One of Jacob’s favorite goalie coaches (Mitch Korn) always starts his camps by talking to parents and telling them to be “seen and not heard.” I have witnessed many goalie parents walking from end to end standing behind their goalie watching every move, or shouting from the stands. Can you imagine going about your day with someone observing over your shoulder? Of course not, so why would you do it to your child? Sit in the stands and resist the urge to yell out, “watch out,” or “pay attention," or “you should have had that one!” If your goalie is looking at you, they are not focused on the play in front of them!

Realize right from the start that a shut out is hard to come by, and it is not all about the goalie. Good defense has a lot to do with how “good” your goalie looks. At first, when he was young, my son thought he should stop every puck and would get upset when he couldn’t. Over the years he has learned that his goal is to keep his team in the game as long as possible, giving them a chance to win by not giving up any “soft goals.”
Goals will happen, and when they do help your goalie to develop mental strategies to put it behind them and focus on the next shot. Once the puck is in the net, getting upset and loosing focus isn’t going to change it. Chances are the game is not over and the best goalies are the ones that can keep their focus.

One way parents can help their goalie is by keeping track of what type of goal was scored on them. If they are struggling with a particular skill or type of shot, a pattern will emerge and your goalie will know what to work on in practice. As they get older they can do this for themselves, but they might need help taking through “how could I have played that differently?” Encourage post game analysis, but don’t turn it into a lecture in the van on the way home. Be honest! Tell them when they play great, but also tell them when they could have played better. When Jacob was young his dad and I had the “three things rule”. After a game we would tell Jacob two things we saw that we thought he could have done better and one thing he did well. Eventually this changed into him telling us three things he thought about the game! Don’t let your goalie play the blame game! They are the last line of defense, regardless of mistakes the team has made. Once the puck gets to them, it is their job to try to keep the puck out of the net! Another part of the blame game is learning to ignore comments from other parents. It is tough to watch a game when your child is having an off day in the net, let alone listen to others comment that your kid looks like Swiss cheese today. Remember every player has a bad day now and then. Keep it in perspective; the next game will be better!

I know sometimes it’s hard to watch. We want to protect them. But chances are if your child has chosen to become a goalie, they are much stronger than you think. Sit back, relax, and enjoy the game…for what it is worth!

Jacob, age 14, still in the net!

Friday, April 23, 2010

Strengthen That Stride

Developing a good, strong stride doesn't always have to happen on the ice. Here's a way you can build your strength and endurance right in your own driveway. West Genesee High School hockey coach Frank Colabufo joins us again this week for another tip for young hockey players. He gets some help with the driveway demonstration from his son, Dan, who makes it look so easy! (Remember last week, the coach stressed the importance of good knee bends and full extensions)

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Adult Learn to Play Program

Six Week Adult Learn to Play Program

A Six Week Adult Learn to Play hockey program is being offered at Greater Baldwinsville Ice Arena. It is for anyone 18 or older who wants to learn to play the game of hockey.

Cost is $60. Full Hockey Equipment is strongly suggested. Adults will learn the basics of hockey while playing the game. This is not a series of practices designed to teach specific skating skills. It is a pick up hockey program for beginners. Instructors will be available to answer questions or demonstrate skills.

This program will be held on May 12, 19, and 26 from 8:15pm to 9:15 pm and June 2, 9, and 16 from 8:15 pm to 9:15 pm. Any questions please contact Tammie Vivlamore @ or call 532-1714.

Cash or Check accepted. Please make checks out to GBIA. Payment is due the first night of the program.

See you at the Rink!

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Striving For That Perfect Stride

We all know good skating makes better hockey players. Strong and powerful strides are a plus! With help from Frank Colabufo, coach of the West Genesee High School hockey team (2010 State Champs) and his son, our kids can see what kind of stride young hockey players should be striving for. Check out the video below. Next week, we'll demonstrate some off-ice exercises your kids can do in the driveway to build speed and strength.

Spring Skills Hockey Clinic at Skaneateles Ice Arena

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Hockey Dad's Bread Rising in Popularity

You can see the pride on his face every time his son steps out onto the ice. Local bakery owner, Peter Christou, is now savoring his role as a hockey dad, watching his Pee Wee son develop his tactical defense skills for a Skaneateles Youth hockey team. Growing up in Central New York, hockey was a big part of Peter's life. He was a dominant blue liner for his Solvay high school hockey team and his brothers played for Christian Brothers Academy. So, for those who
know the brothers' passion for hockey, it's no surprise to see Peter
and his brothers at the local rinks, supporting their puck-chasing kids and this sport.

You'll see their support at every Crunch game. The family owned business, New York Bakery in Lakeland, is a main sponsor for the Syracuse Crunch hockey team. Just look up at the scoreboard during a game and you can't miss the sign touting their newest whole wheat creation, the official bread for the team (which is scoring big beyond our Central New York community, including soldiers overseas). The idea for their P28 High protein bread, got "baking" back when the brothers were overweight and out of shape. They knew winning their battle of the bulge would mean a major fitness makeover, but the thought of cutting bread out of their diets? Tough concept for the three brothers to swallow. After all, bread was literally their bread and butter! Working with a nutritionist and personal trainer they developed the hearty P28 bread, a healthful option that's loaded with protein. Call it a wonder bread, because combined with their new fitness attitude, Peter says it worked wonders for the now buff bakers.

It's not just a bread that's popular among adults striving to stay in shape. My 15- year old is trying to "bulk up" for high school hockey and a lot of his friends with the same goal in mind, have made P-28 their bread of choice. He's health-conscious, but far from an adventurous eater. He likes everything plain and it's always been white bread only. I've even tried to sneak him sandwiches made with those wheat breads that look like white. Nope. Somehow he can always tell and I'll always find the bread left behind on the plate. Given his aversion to anything but white bread, I was more than a little surprised when he asked for this bread with a chewy texture and chalk full of whole wheat. I thought, no way is he ever going to finish a loaf. It'll be another one of those products you buy and try and that would be the end of it. Sure the hockey connection was a plus, but as we all know how finicky teens can be with food. They're not going to stick with anything they don't like. To my surprise again, he's become a regular P28 bread eater and will now choose toasted bread slathered with peanut butter over a bag of chips to satisfy his ravenous after school snack attacks. This hockey mom says hooray for the nutritional assist! He's certainly not alone, with fitness celebrities now climbing on board the P 28 bread train. If you would like to learn more about Peter and his brother's P28 Bread go here. They even have a Facebook fan page, recipe ideas to try and Peter says they're getting ready to roll out their new bagel. Congrats to the Christou family, a local hockey family with really good taste!

Tuesday, April 6, 2010


Like so many of us, Cheryl Field and her husband found themselves involved in a lot of fundraising efforts to keep their two travel hockey sons in gear, on the ice, on the road and in hotels. She recalls selling lots of products that were not very memorable, buying enough coupon books that would light a good size campfire, and handling way too many sticky soda bottles and cans. What hockey parent hasn't been there and done that? But when their older son, Ken Field, expressed interest in teaching skating and stickhandling skills in what became his company, Skating Dynamics, Inc, the Fields were troubled to see so many hockey associations and teams wanting to hire Ken to work with their skaters, but unable to make the financial committment. After a bit of brainstorming, Cheryl's husband decided to create a fundraising vehicle that would be easy to do, have a hockey theme, be imaginative and help teams earn some profit. Now you know the story behind the birth of the Field Candy Company from Marquette, Michigan.

He orginally created four hockey themed candies: Fudgie Puck (with and without nuts), Rink Bar (with and without nuts), Sticky Tape Taffy (salt water taffy), and Top Shelf Peanut Butter Bars. The item that seems to be most popular is the Fudgie Puck. Cheryl says, " It is the same size as a regulation puck (3 inches in diameter and one inch thick), but tastes a whole lot better! My husband had great fun coming up with the names of the candies. Be careful with the pronounciation - bet you can't say Fudgie Puck ten times without getting into trouble!"

Cheryl, I won't take you up on that challenge, but when it comes to the challenge of raising money, it sure is nice to see some new options for keeping our teams financially fueled during the long and expensive season. The company has two websites; and

Monday, April 5, 2010

Open Communication

Check out this hockey video about sportsmanship, from the Liberty Mutual Responsible Sport program.

NHL Coach Tony Granato shares his thoughts on how open communication between coaches and players can foster a Responsible Sports environment.

Friday, April 2, 2010

Junior Hockey Stick Recall

Bauer recalls children's hockey sticks

Posted using ShareThis

Parents, you may want to check your child's hockey stick to find out whether it's on the latest recall list.
Hockey equipment manufacturer Bauer is recalling about 67,000 of its youth and junior hockey sticks, shafts, and blades because of high levels of lead in the paint used to cover them.

Here are the 13 recalled models:
-Nike Bauer Supreme One90 youth and junior stick, including shafts and replacement blades
-Nike Bauer Supreme Junior One50 junior stick, including shafts and replacement blades
-Nike Bauer Supreme One40 junior stick
-Nike Bauer Supreme One70 junior stick
-Nike Bauer/Bauer Supreme One75 junior player and goalie stick
-Nike Bauer/Bauer Vapor XX junior player and goalie stick
-Nike Bauer Supreme LTX junior stick.
-Nike Bauer Apollo junior stick
-Nike Quest Apollo junior blade
-Nike Bauer Supreme Force junior stick
-Nike Bauer Vapor XVI junior stick
-Nike Bauer Vapor XXX Lite "Woody" junior stick
-Nike Bauer Supreme Accel junior stick