How To Check Harder In Hockey

To check harder in hockey, technique, skill, and determination are essential. If mastered, it can give you a competitive edge on the ice. Here are some tips to help you become a better checker.

Timing is key. Wait for the perfect moment to make contact with your opponent. Keep your eyes on the puck and anticipate their movements. Position yourself in an aligned way to maximize impact.

Physicality also plays a role. Build strength with core stability and upper body exercises. This will give you the power to deliver solid hits without losing balance.

Skating techniques are essential too. Practice speed, agility, and balance to quickly close gaps. This will let you create impactful collisions that can disrupt play or force turnovers.

Study opponents’ tendencies. Look at their style of play – stickhandling or passing? Cutting inside or staying along the boards? Knowing these patterns allows you to anticipate their moves and position yourself better.

Lastly, stay disciplined. While aggression is important, stay within the rules of the game. Well-timed legal hits can be just as effective as illegal ones without getting a penalty.

Importance of Checking Harder in Hockey

In the speedy hockey match, checking harder is a must-have skill. It helps players to win over their opponents, create scoring chances and safeguard their teammates. Here’s why it’s so key:

– Checking is a defensive move that causes turnovers: Hard checks can force the puck away from your opponent, giving you a chance to take control. This aggressive play often leads to turnovers and can change the game’s momentum quickly.

– It interferes with your opponent’s offense: Hard checks can separate players from the puck and make it hard for them to pass or shoot accurately.

– It intimidates opponents and affects their decisions: Frequent hard checking can make opponents fearful and hesitant. This gives you a psychological edge and makes them more likely to make mistakes.

– It sets a physical tone and increases team morale: A team that’s good at checking harder shows they’re a powerful force. This pumps up your teammates and demoralizes opponents, giving you a mental edge. Hard-checking also encourages teamwork and resilience.

Also, honing techniques such as angling, body positioning and timing are essential for successful hard-checking. Learning these skills helps you check precisely and lessen the chance of penalties or injuries.

Take Jack Doyle, for example. In a game between rivals, he exhibited his hard-checking skills. He chased after opponents throughout the game, delivering powerful yet clean hits that shook up their offense. His drive caused turnovers and motivated his teammates to be more physical. In the end, his hard-checking strategy was vital in his team’s victory and made him a feared force on the ice.

Proper Technique for Checking Harder

Want to up your checking game? Follow these 3 steps:

  1. Positioning: Stance is key. Feet shoulder-width apart, knees slightly bent, body weight balanced. Eyes on the opponent’s chest. Anticipate their movements.
  2. Timing: Wait for the opportune moment. Read their body language. When they come near, explode with control.
  3. Execution: Arms and upper body strength to deliver a powerful hit. Aim for the chest or shoulders. Legal and safe check.

Plus, stay away from dirty plays and unnecessary aggression. This is key for good sportsmanship and avoiding injuries.

Reminder: Hockey Canada suggests mastering the proper technique for preventing head injuries during physical play.

Tips for Increasing Checking Power

If you want to be a successful hockey player, you need to increase your checking power. Here’s how to do it:

  • Strengthen your lower body: Leg muscles and core muscles help you make strong checks.
  • Boost speed and agility: Quick movements help you close gaps and check opponents.
  • Learn the right way: Proper form reduces the risk of injury. Use your shoulder, not your elbow.
  • Observe others: Know your opponent’s tendencies and weaknesses to time checks perfectly.
  • Keep balanced: When making contact, make sure you don’t lose your balance. This way, you can make stronger checks.

Train regularly for best results. Consistency is key.

For safety, follow the rules and don’t be too aggressive. If you master the techniques, you’ll be an amazing player without risking sportsmanship.

Safety Considerations

It’s vital to wear safety gear, like a helmet with a full face shield, mouthguard, shoulder pads, elbow pads, gloves, shin guards, and skates.

Perform regular equipment tests to guarantee fitting and working correctly.

Warm-up and stretch before playing to reduce the risk of harm.

Master proper body position, balance, and skating for fewer accidents.

Obey the rules and regulations of the game for safety.

Also, frequent physical exercise increases performance and prevents injury.

Moreover, educate players and coaches on concussion management and the consequences of not recognizing and treating it quickly.

Research in The American Journal of Sports Medicine suggests that certified helmets reduce head injuries among hockey players.


To end our chat on checking harder in hockey, it is obvious that using effective techniques and training hard are both necessary for success. Players should focus on correct body position, use strength and leverage, and learn timing and anticipation to boost their checking.

Plus, it is important to realize that discipline and control are key when executing checks. Even though aggression may be needed in some circumstances, staying calm and making clean hits is critical to avoid penalties and keep both players safe.

Also, checking skills can change based on individual playing styles. Some might be best at open-ice checks, while others could do better in physical battles near the boards. Recognizing personal strengths and adapting strategies accordingly can help a player be more efficient when checking opponents.

Pointing out the significance of mastering these techniques throughout history demonstrates their importance in the game. Players like Scott Stevens, known for their powerful checks, have left a lasting mark on the sport through their impactful plays. By studying their methods and using them in their own gameplay, athletes can evolve this basic part of hockey.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. How do I improve my checking skills in hockey?

Answer: To improve your checking skills in hockey, focus on developing your strength and body positioning. Practice proper techniques such as angling, body checks, and poke checks. Additionally, work on your footwork and anticipation to effectively disrupt your opponent’s play.

2. What is angling in hockey?

Answer: Angling in hockey refers to positioning yourself strategically to cut off an opponent’s path and force them towards the boards. It involves using your body and stick to guide the opponent away from scoring areas and limit their options.

3. Are there any drills that can help me check harder?

Answer: Yes, there are several drills you can incorporate into your training to improve your checking skills. Some effective drills include one-on-one battles, body checking in open ice, and practicing poke checks and stick lifts in game-like situations.

4. What are some common mistakes to avoid while checking in hockey?

Answer: Some common mistakes to avoid while checking in hockey include leading with your head or elbows, leaving your feet to deliver a hit, and checking from behind. It’s important to play within the rules and prioritize player safety at all times.

5. How can I increase my overall strength to check harder?

Answer: To increase your overall strength for checking in hockey, incorporate resistance training exercises into your workout routine. Focus on compound movements such as squats, deadlifts, and bench presses. Additionally, emphasize core and lower body exercises to improve your stability and power.

6. What role does anticipation play in checking?

Answer: Anticipation is essential in checking as it allows you to read the play and anticipate your opponent’s next move. By studying your opponent’s tendencies and reading the situation, you can position yourself effectively to deliver a successful check and disrupt their play.

Glossary of Terms Used in the Article

  1. Checking: The act of using physical contact to disrupt an opponent’s play and gain control of the puck.
  2. Technique: The specific method or skill used to execute a task, such as checking, in a precise and effective manner.
  3. Skill: The ability to perform a task with proficiency and expertise, often acquired through practice and training.
  4. Determination: The unwavering resolve and motivation to achieve a goal, even in the face of challenges.
  5. Competitive edge: An advantage that sets a player or team apart from their opponents and improves their chances of success.
  6. Timing: The ability to choose the right moment to initiate a check, maximizing its impact and effectiveness.
  7. Physicality: The use of physical strength and power in hockey to deliver solid hits and maintain control on the ice.
  8. Core stability: The strength and control of the muscles in the abdominal and lower back regions, crucial for balance and force generation during checks.
  9. Skating techniques: The various skills and movements involved in skating, including speed, agility, and balance, which are essential for effective checking.
  10. Anticipate: To predict or expect an opponent’s movements or actions based on observation and analysis.
  11. Alignment: Positioning oneself in a strategic manner to optimize the force and impact of a check.
  12. Stickhandling: The skill of controlling the puck with the hockey stick while skating.
  13. Cutting inside: A maneuver where a player moves toward the center of the ice from the boards.
  14. Body positioning: The way a player positions their body to gain an advantage over an opponent during play.
  15. Turnovers: When possession of the puck changes from one team to the other due to a mistake or error.
  16. Psychological edge: The mental advantage gained by a player or team through intimidation or fear tactics.
  17. Legal hits: Clean and within-the-rules physical contacts made during the game.
  18. Angling: Positioning oneself to control the opponent’s movements and limit their options on the ice.
  19. Open-ice checks: Physical checks delivered in the open area of the ice, away from the boards.
  20. Poke checks: A defensive move where a player uses their stick to poke the puck away from an opponent.

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