Here’s what to do for the first two weeks after your season ends…
Well, first of all, I am sorry – no one wants their season to be over quite this early. You are probably either feeling super motivated to work you @ss off and bring better things for next season or you are bummed beyond belief and you don’t even want to think about hockey until June.
It doesn’t matter which one describes you, the solution is the same.
Here’s what you should do to set yourself up for greater success next season.
Step One: Take Two Weeks Off
I know some of you have spring try-outs and that can throw a wrinkle into the plans, but I would still like to see you take two weeks off of structured training. If you have those spring tryouts and take power skating or do some skill sessions, then I am okay if you stick with those.
During that two weeks, don’t do any structured training, you can skate on the backyard rink or play a little tennis or whatever, you don’t have to just sit home on the sofa, but it should just be pure fun, nothing considered “training”.
Step Two: Look After Little Injuries
I can hear you say “but it isn’t sore now that I’m not on the ice”. That makes sense right? It feels better when you are not using it. But what happens when you have those try-outs, go to that summer hockey camp or start playing again in the fall and the pain comes back?
Now you have put yourself behind the 8-ball because you do not have time to make it better. You don’t have the luxury of time to have someone figure out why you are feeling that pain in the first place (or why you keep tweaking that muscle, etc.)
Even if it seems like nothing – go see a good sport physio who can assess you and if they think it is nothing, then you can rest a little easier knowing you are ready for the rigors of the off-season.
Step Three: Create Your Plan
Map out exactly what you are going to do for your off-season training, include when you are going to workout, where you will workout and with whom you will train. If you plan on having a training partner, then talk with them now and make sure they share your commitment.
If you are going to need a gym membership, start checking out gyms in your area to find the one that has what you need. See if you can get a trial pass for a few days so you can see how you like the feel.
If you are going to work with a trainer, then touch base with them now – the good ones limit their enrolment and their groups fill very quickly. If you wait until May (even April is pushing it) you may find yourself on the outside looking in.
Step Four: Write Out Why You Are Doing It
Take a few minutes and actually write down why you play hockey. Not just ‘because it’s fun’ or ‘to play in the NHL’ dig deeper than that. What about it is fun, how does it make you feel? How will your life be better if you do the work necessary to become the player you believe you can be?
Once you are that player, what will a day be like? What will be the perks, what will be the burdens? Is that what you truly want?
So that will get you through the first two weeks of your off-season, even though it sounds very simple, do not skip any of the steps. This will lay the foundation for a successful off-season, which will lay the foundation for a successful in-season.
PS – not sure what your off-season training should look like (and are serious about playing to your potential), then you will like THIS