Stickhandling is your lifeblood on the ice. Precise and deft hands allow you to weave around opposing players to get into position for a clutch pass or shot—and to leave your opponents looking like fools.
But flashy hands won’t do you much good if you can’t dribble. You’ll be slow and it will be more difficult to keep the puck on your stick.
“Stickhandling is a general term that covers several specific skills used at different times during a game,” says Derek Popke, NHL skills consultant and founder of the Vancouver Hockey School. “You need to get better at each dribble involved in stickhandling, specifically the front and side dribble.”
Once you master the technique for these two dribbles, nearly every other skill will follow. You’ll learn the best stick-and-body position for releasing quick, powerful passes and shots, and for keeping rock-solid control of the puck at all times.
Before you try some crazy toe-drag, spin-o-rama move, focus on the fundamentals. You’ll score more points—and get the attention of coaches and scouts—much faster.