Hello SilverBacks, Merry Christmas.
Young men, I have enjoyed watching the progress of your skills, realizing it takes hard work. You have to know it takes time to get to know your team and all the moves each player makes; after all, it is near the start of the season. You men have improved a lot and will continue to improve as the season continues.
What separates the player who makes it and those that don’t is the mental discipline each possesses, no matter what the sport, team or individual. Mental preparation applies to all sports.
If you are a goalie, visualize yourself following the puck leave the stick and straight into your glove. As a forward you hear the applause that your teammates will receive after a great play by you and your line. As a defenceman and defending a two-on-one play. When your coach says “Don’t take dumb penalties,” he is asking you to be mentally prepared as you control your emotions. Generally dumb penalties occur after an interaction with another player, a hard hit or a slash behind the play. Have you visualized what you would do in that situation, besides losing your temper and retaliating? A player in control of their emotions will always outperform a player who does not have control.
In closing, don’t neglect your mental preparation. Be the best you can as you progress in your hockey career. You will see that the physical abilities of the players are not different. The successful ones will have worked on and developed their mental aspect to the greater degree than those who are not successful.
Remember the 4 D’s: desire, determination, dedication and discipline.
Good luck on the last half of the season.
J. R. Motter