5 Summer Tips for a Goalie’s Off-Season
With the summer finally kicking off, we wanted to bring you some summer tips for goalie’s to have a successful off-season! Not every summer will be the same for every goaltender, but we have created five steps we believe will help you get the most out of your summer and off-season.
1. Take a Break
One of the most important things about starting the summer for a goalie is taking a break from the position. Being a goaltender can be very tasking on the goaltender’s body and taking a break allows the body to heal itself and help prevent future injuries that may occur by over working. After a taking off a few weeks from physical activities and allowing your body to rest, you should play some other sports to keep your mind off hockey.
Getting mentally burnt out occurs with goalie’s a lot because of how mentally taxing the position can get after playing through several long seasons. Taking a break from the position during the summer can be very healthy for the goaltender to get the most out of their game, not only from a mental health perspective but also an on-ice perspective. Playing other sports allows you to work on skills you will use on the ice in different ways which might help break some bad habits and gain other skills that will help you in net. Skills such as footwork in basketball and soccer or hand-eye in baseball and lacrosse are just a couple examples of the many skills you can learn by picking up a sport for the summer to help stay in shape and get away from the crease for a bit.
2. Gear Care
Once finishing up the season, it is always a great idea to take all of your gear out of the bag and check to see what pieces might be time to retire. Gear wear is something that will always occur and checking up on what you need to purchase early on in the summer is a great idea, so you can plan it out, purchase it, and then get use to it before the next season starts.
As for the gear you don’t need to replace, you will want to get some disinfectant and or deodorizer to prevent your gear from smelling bad and from growing any sorts of bacteria when not in use. There are several ways to wash your gear and help remove sweat from inside the equipment so that it will smell better and have less potential for bacteria to build up. Storing the gear that you may not be using for the time being in a place up off the ground on hangers or other places you may have available to you is a great way to dry your gear and keep it safe for the time being.
Although it is not essential and there are plenty of stock options available, planning out your next set is a great idea to do early in the summer if you have the heads up as to what team you will be on or you just want a personalized set. Purchasing any custom sets early on will allow you time to decide exactly what you want and more than enough time to receive your gear and get it broken in after the wait times depending on what company you decide to order from. GoalieMonkey.com has all current customizers available on our website from CCM, Vaughn, Warrior, Brian’s, and Bauer.
4. Off-Ice Training
Approaching your upcoming season, it is always a good idea to hop back in to the weight room before getting back on the ice. Starting off with some cardio and easing back in to weights slowly is a great way to get your muscles back in to playing shape to help prevent any injuries that may occur after taking a break from the ice.
Doing some hand-eye training against a wall with a tennis ball is a great way to get your eyes back to tracking and get your body in sync with your reactions. Stretching is also very important to do before and after any off-ice workout so you can help prevent any injuries in the weight room or when getting back on to the ice.
5. On-Ice Training
Finally, the season is right around the corner and you will need to start shaking the rust off your game. Heading to a goalie coach if available to you or hitting a couple drop-ins is a good way to get back in to your gear and break in any new gear you might have obtained over the summer. Starting off by doing basic drills using a lot of skating will help get your feet back in place and put you on a good track for the rest of the summer.
Once you are back and feeling comfortable, try to focus on some of your weaknesses and try to break any habits you might have developed to help round out your game and keep out a few more shots out of the net than the previous season. Another thing you should work on is your strengths! You can never be too talented at something in net, especially in things such as skating and tracking. Focusing on your strengths will keep these skills stay in check so that they will continue to be your strengths while developing the rest of your game.
This article was originally published on July 10, 2019, and has been updated with new information.