As a Program Director of a small rink in North Andover, MA, I get told all the time that “Cross ice is good for younger players… but not for my kid. He/She is ready for full ice.” And, while I know that it’s my job to sell the idea of a smaller surface, I am fortunate in the fact that science backs up my claims about the benefits of cross ice for players of any level. There is a reason why the NHL practices cross ice. There is a reason why we do it at the NCAA Division I level.
Advantages of cross ice training
If I ran one of these two practices…Which one would you want to sign your child up for? Same price, same amount of time on the ice.
It would be safe to assume that you would want your child to participate in practice B. More puck touches/shots/passes/skating etc. All of the things that are useful and important in the game are emphasized in cross ice. (See picture below.)
So, why would you be OK with a game being like that? When scouting and recruiting for NCAA scholarships, we look for players that can make plays. Not kids that rushed to the next level too soon.
Try cross ice training at Micro Ice
Your child gets better by doing those things. They need to practice those types of situation in game like conditions…And that is exactly what Micro Ice in North Andover, MA does. The smaller surface involves players more often, they are always “in the play.” It also forces them to make plays quicker. They need to process everything and execute shots, passes, skating faster; because they run out of time and space more rapidly than on a normal rink. When these kids go back to a full sized ice, the game is easier. They have more time and space the make plays and are better prepared for higher level of play.
Check out our programs in North Andover, MA and see why people love coming to our clinics.