How to get Jonathan – Quick!

IMG_1241I will send you some specific exercises in a video later next week, but I am in Las Vegas right now where I just wrapped up my Mastermind meeting.  It was another great meeting where I got coaching from some of the top online business professionals in the world.  They help me deliver more value to goalies all over the world.  It was awesome.

Now Paul and I are taking a couple days of vacation time to relax.  And by RELAX, I mean go on a 6.5 hour hike (actually we jogged most of the way down) up to the peak of Mt. Charleston  (11,916 ft of elevation) – that’s just over 16-miles.  It was awesome and exhausting.  But we hit up Gordon Ramsay’s restaurant Burgr for, you guessed it a BURGER last night and it was awesome.  We even stayed awake until 8:09pm – – yeah, we are crazy!

But at least I was still able to get up at my regular 4:30am – write this article for you and in about 15-minutes I will head down to the gym for a workout.  Sounds like an ideal Sunday to me 🙂

How You Can Get Jonathan Quick

My Dad was 6’4″ so he often got comments that ‘Mountain’ was an appropriate last name.  The same can be said for Jonathan Quick.  That guy has an exceptional dose of both flexibility and speed which let him make those outstanding desperation saves.

I know many goalie coaches who would argue that he should not be making so many desperation saves, but at the NHL level when the game moves so, well…Quick – the ability to make them is a huge bonus.

I get more questions about Jonathan Quick than any other NHL goalie – let me be clear, I do not train Mr. Quick and I do not know him personally, so this article is based on my observations of him.

The typical question is ‘how do I make saves like Jonathan Quick?’

Well, if I had the answer to that question, I would be too busy counting my millions to be read, let along answer my emails (just kidding, I will always answer your emails).

The answer is so complex, it is like asking ‘how do I play football like Peyton Manning?’ but I will give it a stab and try to peel the onion a little bit.

Resistance TrainingKeep in mind that we are not talking about very good we are talking about an exceptional performer in the best league in the world!

Step 1 – have the right parents – you need the physiology and anatomy to provide the raw materials for success.  For example, I will NEVER, EVER, EVER, EVER be an Olympic 100m sprint champion.  No matter what I do, no matter how hard I train, it will NEVER happen for me.  I do not have the physiological make-up for it.  Just as Usain Bolt will NEVER, EVER, EVER, EVER be the Olympic Marathon champ, he does not have those tools.

Step 2 – have a natural gift and aptitude for the position – the way they talk about Gretzky’s vision.  Was he born with that, did he develop that during the countless hours playing on the backyard rink?  Who knows, but you having something that everyone else doesn’t really helps.  It is not essential, there are lots of grinders out there – but it helps.

Step 3 – Have great coaching; coaching that suits your body and how you move.  We see goalies play all different styles who have success.  I am not qualified to comment on his style or technique, but I am assuming he has worked with coaches who have helped fine tune his technique while still letting him use his mobility as a tool.

THE TRAINING PARTS

Step 4 – Have the mobility (remember that is different from just flexibility – mobility means you can control your end range of movement) necessary to cover the net and make toe saves when necessary.  Can you succeed without doing the full splits? – yes, but the question was about Jonathan Quick specifically and it is a tool he has found great success with.  I am not privy to the anatomical structure of his hips, but after back surgery post 2012 season, I can’t help but wonder if he may not have full control of all that flexibility which can contribute to extra wear and tear.

So that means using some of the Functional Range Conditioning techniques I have shared with you in the past to develop useable mobility. Add to that a good dose of patience, you will not reach your max ability in a day, week or month.  Plan on developing this over months and years.

Step 5 – You need the speed.  So you need to be able to fire those muscles, at times from awkward postures, very quickly and with stability in the other segments.

This is where your functional training comes in.  That is the training that keeps you off machines, has you moving or stabilizing in multiple planes and works you from various postures utilizing the muscles you will need on the ice.

This does not mean, trying to mimic your exact on-ice movements off the ice.  It means improving the strength and speed of similar muscle chains, so when you go on the ice, you have those tools at your disposal, but you will still need to hone the specific movement and technique on the ice, with your skates and pads on to complete the transfer.  This is where the neural pathway training comes in so these movements become less cognitive and more automatic.

ScotchTHE GOALTENDING IS LIKE WHISKEY PART

Step 6 – Bring your patience.  There is not a specific recipe that will lead every goalie to the same end point, even if they follow the same steps exactly.  When Paul and I were in Scotland we visited the Oban distillery and saw how they made whiskey.  The final step in the process is to let it age.  You cannot thrown in all the incredients, distill it and viola – Scotch Whiskey.

It needs to sit in those barrels (Oban uses old Jack Daniels barrels – – a little whiskey trivia for you) and develop its flavour and character. You need to do the same.

Training for 4 or 6 or 8 months will bring big changes to your game, but you will not be ‘finished’ there, you need to keep going after those subtle incremental improvements that will continue year after year after year.

Finally, the recipe is pretty much the same for most whiskeys with a few subtle differences in how they age it, etc.  Even at Oban, where they follow the exact same process over and over again, the flavour will differ subtly from batch to batch – that’s just the way it is.  Goalies will be the same – for some it will work out perfectly, for others, not so much.  That’s life.

So I know what you guys want is a simple – Here are the exercises you need to do to be just like Quick – and this was a little more conceptual, so I will get back with a few specific exercises that will help you out.

It will not be until later next week since I am traveling until Tuesday and then it will be pretty busy in the gym for those first few days home, so stay tuned!

Cheers,
M

PS – one thing I can guarantee is that Quick does some form of training during the season to improve his mobility, stability, strength and speed, so he can take full advantage of his time on the ice making both the routine saves and the show-stoppers.  If you are not doing the same, then you should read this article on The 3 Simple Steps To Gain Momentum As The Season Progresses And Stamp Your Ticket As The #1 Goalie Heading Into Play-offs

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Maria Mountain

Maria Mountain is a Fitness Coach and the owner of Revolution Conditioning in London, Ontario. She helps hockey players from AAA to professionals compete at their highest level while reducing their risk of injury. Dedicated to athletes who want to work hard, but train smart.

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