it’s the beginning of hockey regular season so we’re spending more time in hockey arenas. and this weekend we spent even more time than usual as we signed odin up for a laura stamm power skating clinic in baraboo, wisconsin. the well-regarded clinics are taught all over the country and usually cost over $200 but the baraboo youth hockey association subsidizes the cost and it costs just $75 if you’re not part of the association ( $35 if you are a member of the baraboo youth hockey league ). so it’s quite a deal for an intensive 6 hours of skating split over 2 days.
drills! drills! drills!
in this drill, the kids skate fast and drop down and alternate sliding on each knee without standing up.
i am certain that i could not do this.
lots and lots of drills to improve their skating backwards skills.
and maybe a bit of goofing off with friends who give odin a hard time when his poppi is trying to take pictures
odin’s first “regular season” hockey practice on home ice. he’s in the red socks.
kris is on the hockey association board and the parent rep for odin’s team so it’s going to be even more all hockey all the time this season
odin’s trying on new hockey gear because his old gear is way, way, waaaaay too small. our little boy now fits into adult smalls?!
he’s not exactly super enthused at me taking his picture
a few months ago we got odin an hockeyshot extreme passing kit so he could practice his stick handling and shooting skills over the summer. now that the weather is warmer we can put it on a piece of plywood so i don’t have to listen to him shooting in the house
i’m going to guess someone might be getting a net for his birthday.
the regular season of hockey ended and ouru local arena is in the process of taking down the ice but the fun never ends for us! while we’re not doing The Neverending Hockey Season again this year, odin is going to a seven week bluedevils AAA hockey development camp, so we get to drive an hour twice a week and stand in a freezing arena watching him run drills. yay!
i jest. he never ceases to impress me with his self-motivated desire to keep improving his game. we’d have been just as happy if he decided to take it easy after the regular season, but pushing the limits of his abilities is what he chooses to do.
( he’s in the red “socks” running a passing drill )
i enjoy sitting in the penalty box. it’s easy volunteer work – you just open the door when a player gets a penalty to let them in the box and let them out when the time is up.
hearing the coaches interact with the players offers a unique perspective on the game. i can’t imagine coaching a bunch of nine and ten year olds. they’re old enough to take direction and understand their individual positions in the game, but they are still young and early in internalizing the lesson that they can only win by playing as a team.
in this game they kept falling back to playing as a set of individuals, swatting the puck around while the other team ran circles around them playing as a coordinated unit. according the scoreboard, the game was close, but looking at the style of play it was clear odin’s team was probably going to lose when they got tired.
they came off the ice after the first period and the coach asked, “so, how do you think that went.”
their simultaneous response, “baaaaaaaaad!”
the state championships are coming up this weekend. hopefully they can learn from the loss.
after playing offense and scoring a goal, odin is back on defense while playing against la crosse who they’ve beat once and lost once in overtime.
“maintain your self control.” easier said than done!
as one does as a hockey parent, i sat in the opponent’s penalty box. it offers a great view of the game. you’ll note, there’s a player in the box. i have to admit it was a bad call
odin moves the puck down the ice. viroqua had more shots on goal but their goalie was too good and they lost. la crosse is conference 3 team ( viroqua is conference 4 ) so they should feel proud at beating them once and almost beating them again in overtime in previous games
as many of you know, odin has been playing hockey for years. and for all those years, he has played defenseman and quite enjoyed it. but for whatever reason during a tournament in la crosse odin’s coach asked if he wanted to play right wing which is an offense position. he gladly accepted.
all the game play is different for a winger and i thought he’d spend a lot of time making mistakes and being a little discombobulated with the change. but he proved me wrong ( not uncommon ) and did a great job picking up passes from defense and moving the puck down the ice and passing to other teammates, disrupting the opponents and working the boards.
and he was at the right place at the right time in front of the net and scooped in his first goal ever against a tough goalie.
even sitting up in the stands, i could see the look of surprise on his face. quite a moment. i don’t know if it was coincidence or not but his goal seemed to rally the team and they scored several more before losing in a close game.
i doubt he’ll soon forget his goal on his first playing offense against the formidable la crosse team.
i should add that his team came in last place in the tournament. they played four games and lost all four. they weren’t going to play in the tournament because it was against teams that aren’t in their conference. they were all teams from bigger markets with larger pools of players to select from who play on ice all year round. but one team dropped out and the organizers needed another team to play on short notice so we went. they lost handily to the best team from sheboygan, wisconsin but played well against sun prairie and la crosse. the viroqua underdogs were evenly matched with both teams having similar shots on goal and could have one those games if they could figure out how to get more shots past their ace goalies.
they’ve lost most games they’ve played this year. but that obscures the fact that they are a solid team who is playing with a ton of heart and have lost many games by just a goal or two or in overtime.
when the pieces come together they’ll be formidable.
living in driftless region with no wisconsin nhl team presents a few tough choices for our default favorite hockey team. it could theoretically be the minnesota wild but we’re in wisconsin the odin plays against a lot of minnesota teams to that’s not really going to happen.
we lived in chicago for a number of years and always enjoyed the blackhawks and they could reasonably be the default choice since they are the closest major market team. but i don’t think odin’s michigan relatives are ever going to let that happen
this year got more red wings gear to cement the deal.