Hockey Alberta has finalized the operational guidelines for its Initiation Program for the 2015-16 season.
The guidelines outline the goals and expectations of Local Minor Hockey Associations (LMHAs), administrators, instructors, players and parents in implementing hockey programming for five and six-year-olds across the province.
The guidelines, along with information for instructors and parents, can be reviewed and downloaded from the Initiation section of the Hockey Alberta website.
As was outlined to LMHAs at the Spring Zone meetings in late April, and discussed at the Annual General Meeting and Hockey Conference in Calgary in June, Hockey Alberta’s Initiation Program is the formal structure for the operation of hockey for players six years and under in Alberta. The program is based on a combination of guidelines from Hockey Canada and Hockey Quebec, with specific modifications to reflect Hockey Alberta’s player first approach.
Hockey Alberta’s Initiation Program is based on Hockey Canada’s Long Term Player Development (LTPD) model. The ultimate goal is to make the first impression of hockey a positive one for all players and parents. There are three main objectives:
- Create a safe and positive environment for players six years and younger to experience the sport.
- Incorporate physical literacy, fair play, cooperation and FUN into the sport.
- Teach basic hockey skills so players can enjoy the sport.
Key elements of the guidelines include:
- All practices and games are played cross-ice, half-ice or third-ice of the regulation playing surface.
- The blue four-ounce puck is recommended, along with other items such as tennis balls, soccer balls etc.
- No offside or icing called, nor timekeepers, scorekeepers or goal judges used. Officials are optional, since coaches should be on the ice for all sessions.
- No goalie equipment, other than a goalie stick.
For information on Hockey Alberta’s Initiation Program for 2015-16, and to access the guidelines and other information documents, go to the Initation Program page.