How Long Is A Professional Hockey Rink

A professional hockey rink typically measures 200 feet in length and 85 feet in width. Here are five supporting facts about the length of a professional hockey rink:
1. Regulation Size: The National Hockey League (NHL), considered the highest level of professional hockey, requires its rinks to be 200 feet long. This regulation size ensures consistency and fairness in the game.

2. International Measurements: The International Ice Hockey Federation (IIHF), which governs international hockey competitions, also specifies the same measurements for professional rinks, maintaining uniformity across different countries.

3. Neutral Zone: In a professional hockey rink, the 200-foot length includes a neutral zone, which sits between the two blue lines. This area allows for smoother transitions between the offensive and defensive zones during the game.

4. Overtime Considerations: In NHL playoff games, the length of the rink remains the same during regulation time. However, in overtime, the rink is shortened to 85 feet to create more scoring opportunities and intensify the game.

5. Variations in Other Leagues: While the NHL and IIHF follow the 200-foot length standard, it’s important to note that other professional leagues, such as the American Hockey League (AHL), may have rinks with slightly different dimensions due to various factors including arena constraints.


1. Why is the NHL rink 200 feet long?
The NHL decided on a 200-foot length to ensure fair and consistent gameplay across all teams and arenas. This standardization allows players to adapt their strategies in a predictable manner.

2. Are all professional hockey rinks the same size?
Not all professional hockey rinks are the same size. While the NHL and IIHF have standardized their rink size at 200 feet long, variations can be found in other leagues due to different arena dimensions or historical factors.

3. What is the purpose of the neutral zone?
The neutral zone, situated between the two blue lines, acts as a transition area during gameplay. It allows players to regroup, strategize, and transition between the offensive and defensive zones more effectively.

4. Why is the rink shortened in overtime?
By shortening the rink to 85 feet in overtime, teams have less space to defend, which leads to increased scoring opportunities. This creates a more exhilarating and high-stakes environment for both players and fans.

5. How does the rink’s length affect gameplay?
The rink’s length affects gameplay by influencing the speed of the game and the strategies used by teams. With more space to cover, players have to adjust their positioning, speed, and passing abilities to adapt to the larger playing area.

6. Are international rinks the same size as NHL rinks?
Yes, international rinks, including those used in IIHF competitions, are the same size as NHL rinks, measuring at 200 feet in length. This allows for consistency when teams from different countries compete against each other.

7. Do minor league hockey rinks differ from the NHL?
Minor league hockey rinks, such as those used in the AHL, may have slightly different dimensions due to various factors like arena constraints or historical reasons. However, most minor league rinks still adhere closely to the NHL’s standard rink size.

BOTTOM LINE: A professional hockey rink is typically 200 feet long, providing a standardized playing field for NHL and international games. The rink’s length impacts gameplay and strategies, while variations in rink sizes can be found in other leagues due to factors such as arena constraints.