Coaching the youth of the tomorrow on an ice hockey rink is just as important as teaching them in the classroom. Many lessons can be learned and taught in the miniscule allotted time that coaches have with players. Unfortunately, a lot of the game is lost with the lack of knowledge that coaches possess when it comes to the game. Hat Trick Training Academy (HTT) is developing a state-of-the-art professional learning website that brings together coaches of the greatest game around the world and new coaches in the same virtual classroom to discuss and learn about different skills strategies and drills. Experienced coaches will instruct a video about a specific game theory/strategy/game play/drills and then follow it up with a 90-minute Q&A/discussion open to all coaches. Our goal is to educate the newer coaches on how to train their players no matter the amount of ice time or quality of players. The more knowledge passed to the coaches to the players will result in more quality instruction closing the gap between travel hockey players and house hockey players.
Call to Action
Since the beginning of my coaching journey I have longed for more information to pass along to my players and fellow coaches. This has been because I have always wanted every player to be able to have the skills to play hockey and compete where ever they might go. Being from Texas and coaching hockey there, there is a stigmatism that teams from Texas (and the south) don’t know how to play the game from the great white north. While this seems silly that people think that way, it is the truth and it is a huge obstacle to overcome. This has been the driving force to show people just because I’m not from the land of frozen ponds and geese doesn’t mean I don’t know what I’m talking about. And just because my players speak with a country twang doesn’t mean they can’t play against the other kids who grew up on the ponds.
Professional Learning Blueprint
When setting up a blueprint one of the key things to take into thought is the time length of the classes (or PL time) and the content. HTT knows that after a certain amount of time, learners lose interest in learning and especially if the content is irrelevant or redundant. With our outline classes have a video that are no more than 30 minutes long and are followed by a live interactive question and answer session that is scheduled for 90 minutes. Both the video and Q&A will be led by the qualified HTT coaching instructors. The courses will contain vital information about systems, tactics, drills, plays, theories and practical solutions for the novice and advanced coaches
The target audience that HTT is trying to reach are novice and experienced youth hockey coaches who have just taken the minimum required courses by their countries (especially USA Hockey). Our vast collection of resources and experienced coaches will help lead the newer coaches to an exciting change to their hockey regime which will allow more knowledge passed down to the players and close the gap between those who have expensive professional coaches and the ones who are just learning or looking for new information in our ever evolving game.
Allowing both our instructors and learners to be involved in a virtual classroom with discussion boards and face to face talking will help foster not only collaboration but also give new coaches confidence in asking questions without ridicule. Making sure the coaches understand the courses and continued PL is what we are focused on. Having a discussion board along will allow those who have questions that are afraid to ask on camera, a great media to use to ask. Having the face to face meetings like ZOOM or other virtual phone calls also is a great media to use for a more personal interaction and leveling the “coaching field” for all participants in the courses.
Fostering Self-Directed Learning
The courses themselves are here to help not only the coaches wanting to learn more but also the foster a relationship to teach their athletes to a higher level of play. Coaches who take the courses have the option to utilize what aspects of each course they want to. They can use the whole course or sections of it. Either which way, with the help of the instructors, coaches will be able to decide what will be the best for them and their team to be successful.
Professional Learning Instructors
The HTT learning instructors will have an extensive background and knowledge of sports, sports psychology and as well hockey systems played around the world. The instructors will be from all parts of the world including and not limited to: United States, Canada, Mexico, England, Russia, South Africa, Czech Republic, Ukraine, Germany, Sweden, Norway, Finland and Switzerland. The selection of these coaches will allow HTT to cover the major and minor regions of ice hockey instruction from around the world.
All instructors from HTT will go through extensive training to make sure they understand the subjects of the courses and they know all the answers to every question that is asked. The instructors will collaborate with one another during the Q&A session to make sure that an adequate answer is always given to the person asking the question(s).
HTT Learning will be an ongoing learning project for the instructors and the learners. Our goal is to educate coaches who will go and educate their players so they will be prepared to play at any level. This will be a huge undertaking and will need support from within HTT and as well as from outside the school. Partnering up with the governing bodies of hockey from around the world will be a daunting task that can happen. Making hockey coaches and players better is what HTT Learning is all about.