A Great Hockey Skater Is Suddenly Falling?
January 11, 2011 by Dennis Chighisola
Aaaaah, I love it when folks toss their hockey problems my way (even if I’m not sure I can answer them)!
Okay, so I just received the following question (which might just be a huge challenge for me). Please take a read…
– Dennis Chighisola
A Great Hockey Skater Is Suddenly Falling(?)
This actually came by way of a Comment, but I thought it worthy enough to address in its own post. Here’s the question verbatim:
“my son plays in a novice select team is 8yrs old…a great skater..but is falling alot of late…..Why ??“
Hmmmmmm… Why, indeed.
Quite obviously this is a difficult one to answer without being able to see the boy. (I surely wouldn’t mind receiving a short video clip of the youngster, just so I might do a lot better than I’m going to right now.)
That said, the best I have to go on are the following assumptions:
1) dad says he’s a pretty good skater;
2) it sounds like the level the boy is playing is pretty decent;
3) it also sounds as if the youngster’s frequent falling is something that’s just started happening very recently.
The reason I wanted to state all that is because it probably at least makes it possible for us to discount the kid being an awful skater who ought to fall plenty anyway.
That established (I hope), my educated guess is that we have to look in two separate areas for an answer…
1) Equipment-wise, I’d look at the skates. Has there been a change in these important pieces of gear — either in a switch to new or different blades, or is there something wrong with a recent skate sharpening? (To be honest, I don’t think new boots would make a player fall, but something being drastically different about the blades or sharpening surely could.) And, of course, it would be nice if it was that easy to resolve the boy’s problems — by just fixing a piece of gear, I mean.
2) After that, we obviously have to consider a physical problem of some sort, and this I’ll question on several fronts:
- if recent skating problems happened about the same time the boy joined the current (select?) team, it could be that many pretty talented opponents are causing him to have difficulties keeping-up (having to change directions quickly, etc);
- I don’t usually associate growth spurts with kids far younger than puberty, but a sudden change in one’s body can surely bring about some difficulties with fine motor skills;
- God forbid, but I very long ago had a really talented student of mine start having some similar problems, and this was later diagnosed as a very serious health issue.
Okay, that’s where I am right now — suggesting that the dad work his way through that short checklist, first starting with the possibility that the whole thing has to do with an equipment (or mainly a skate) issue.
I’d also invite him to work with me on this, so that we could go back and forth to troubleshoot things. So, if you would, dad, let me know what you discover from going through that list, and even send me a short video clip if you can (I’ll provide advice if you don’t know how to do it).
Finally, I’m sure the dad won’t mind that I open this discussion to others. Ya, I think it would be helpful if anyone else has an idea they think ought to be included in the checklist I’ve plotted so far.
Oh, did I say I love questions? You know I do! And, I also love feedback or Comments from members, so please join-in!