Balance Training for Ice Hockey

Eric Cressey sent some comments out on his newsletter that were fantastic. (

It stems from his heavily research book called The Truth About Unstable Surface Training (

Ice Hockey coaches all over the country think that they are different.  They are on 2 blades and requires their training to be so different right?  Wrong.  Eric’s research supports everything that we that train for strength already know.  Squatting on a Bosu Ball  and disks do not get it done. The Bosu Ball was created by an American skate  boarder in recent years.

Why is it that Europe and the old Eastern Bloc Countries produce more highly skilled players than North America even though we have more ice and more skaters.    They don’t have Bosu Balls or Speed/Agility Ladders either.

It’s not rocket science here.  The studies support my belief that strength improves balance.  In addition to the enhanced balance there is also the improved explosiveness and power associate with becoming stronger.  How about the reduction of injury and the recovery of injury associated with being strong verse “balanced”?

What is strong?  In my opinion a collegiate athlete is strong when they can parallel squat at least two times their body weight. How about 20+ pull ups as a baseline?  A high school athlete should be on their way to develop this type of strength.

There has been a lot of talk about the training of  Troy Polamalu of the Pittsburgh Steelers and his body weight training.  Problem is that they fail to disclose that he spent several year(5?) getting strong as hell at USC.  Once you are strong, then training can be specialized.

How many hockey players or athletes for that matter are that strong?  I haven’t seen many!!!!    The specificity is in the energy system training people!!!!  Conditioning is in the training for the specific sport.  Hockey players don’t need to run miles… that’s an entire article in itself…

Read this about specializing too soon!