U8 - 6 Station Practice Plan #4

Practice Date: 
Monday, June 8, 2020

Practice Length: 80 minutes

Drills: 
Brittish Bulldog - Full Ice
Length of Time: 
10 minutes
Station Number: 
Warm Up
Corner Tires - Small Area Game
Length of Time: 
10 Minutes
Station Number: 
1
King of the Hill Puck Control Drill
Length of Time: 
10 minutes
Station Number: 
2
2 vs 2 with Regular Nets - Station
Length of Time: 
10 minutes
Station Number: 
3
Hand Soccer
Length of Time: 
10 minutes
Station Number: 
4
Border Tag - Station
Length of Time: 
10 minutes
Station Number: 
5
Tire Turn Relays - Forwards to Backwards Transition - Station
Length of Time: 
10 minutes
Station Number: 
6
Six Zones

This game is inspired by the soccer activity with the same name. Another great warm up activity that will get players excited and ramp up the energy for practice. Players can use pucks or ringettes. In some cases it might be best to only let the advanced players use pucks. This game promotes creativity, awareness, and decision making. It also provide a game that works on their puck control and ability to handle the puck (or ringette) with their head up.

How to Play

The players line up on the goal line with a puck (or ringette) on their stick. Place 3 - 4 coaches or players in the middle (the bulldogs). On the whistle the players will try to skate from one end to the other without getting their puck (or ringette) stolen by the "bulldogs". The "bulldogs" must stay between the blue lines.

Length of Time: 
10 minutes
Station Number: 
Warm Up

Corner Tires is a small area game where the players score by hitting the tire with a puck.

Set Up

Place four tires on a rectangle as shown in the diagram. Make sure there is enough room from the tires to the edge so that there is room to play on all sides of the tires. The coach has the pucks along the edge with the players split into two teams on each side.

How the game is played

The coach will dump a puck into play and two players will compete for the puck. The players will defend the tires on their side of the ice and try to score by hitting either tire on the opponents side of the ice. After about 90 seconds the coach blows the whistle and dumps a new puck into play and two new players from each team play the new puck.

Credit: Diagram and animation produced using Hockey Coach Vision

Length of Time: 
10 Minutes
Station Number: 
1

This is a fun drill to start or end practice with that is great for the U6 age levels all the way to the NHL. Players love this drill! It is also known as "King of the Ring" if you only use circles, or it is also known as "Knockout." If you have more than 6 players you can start by increasing the boundaries to include the entire neutral zone. Once there are 6 players remaining then you can narrow the boundaries down to the circle.

Setup

Every player will have a puck to start and on the whistle players will skate around controlling the puck. The object of the game is to maintain control of your puck and be the last player to have control of your puck. As players skate around they will also try to knock other players pucks away. If you get your puck knocked away then you have to leave the playing area. The last player with control of their puck WINS!

Watch the Colorado Avalanche perform this fun exercise below:

If you need further proof that this drill is great for all levels then watch this video of the Pittsburgh Penguins playing King of the Hill with the whole team in the neutral zone. This was during the Stanley Cup Playoffs when they won in 2017!

Length of Time: 
10 minutes
Station Number: 
2

This version of 2 vs 2 is played on a quarter ice station using regular nets. This station allows you to use goalies if they are available. This type of 2 vs 2 is great for this size of station. It allows each player to be fully engaged at all times. With only two players it is still mostly 1 on 1 play but some of the advanced players have opportunities to make plays. Each shift should be 60 - 90 seconds then blow the whistle and throw out a new puck for the next group of players.

Coaching Points

For the most part just let them play and try not to get too involved except for managing the shift changes. Compliment them on good plays but stay away from correcting them.

Credit: Diagram produced using Hockey Coach Vision.

Length of Time: 
10 minutes
Station Number: 
3

Hand soccer is a game that requires players to stay low because they have to use their hands to move the ball. While it does make the players bend over at the waist it also forces them to use more knee bend than they normally do. Players will be using their balance and edges to compete so just let them play!

Setup

Place two cones as goals at each end of the station that are 12 - 15 feet apart.

Objective

The objective is to score goals by getting the ball through the cones that represent the other team's goals. Players must use their hands to advance the ball.

Length of Time: 
10 minutes
Station Number: 
4

This is a great activity for station based practices. It works on agility, forward skating, backwards skating, forwards to backwards transition, and backwards to forwards transition.

Set Up

Place a border between two players. One player is designated as the "IT" player. Players do not use their sticks.

How the Game is Played

On the whistle the player designated as "IT" will try to tag the other player. They have to stay within a stick length of the border and cannot cross over the border, they have to skate around the border.

Progressions

  1. Both players have to skate forwards
  2. Both players have to skate backwards
  3. Players skate forwards on one side of the border and backwards on the other side
  4. Players have to skate heel to heel (otherwise known as open hips or mohawks)
Length of Time: 
10 minutes
Station Number: 
5

This relay race has players working on foward stride, forwards to backwards transition, and backwards skating. The players should be shown a good demonstration first and then give them several repetitions before having them race. The players will go forwards to the tire, transition to backwards as they go around the tire, then backwards all the way to the goal line.

Coaching Points

  • flip the hips as you get even with the tire so your butt is facing the direction you are transitioning.
  • use the outside edge of the inside skate to push off of and start your momentum backwards.
  • try to limit the transition to one cross over before starting backwards C-cuts.
Length of Time: 
10 minutes
Station Number: 
6