Diane Ness

Stops and starts


By Diane Ness


If you have had a chance to watch some NHL hockey this winter, you know how important it is to sustain a good forecheck. A good forecheck is set up by executing good stops and starts. There are a few different ways to do stops and starts, but I will explain the two main ones that you will see in a game, and more importantly why they should be worked on and practiced regularly.

Read more: Stops and starts

Transitioning from back to front


By Diane Ness


While watching many NHL defensemen turn from back to front or back to lateral, you wonder how they are able to match their speed with that of an opponent’s forward. For any defenseman, transitioning efficiently is of the utmost importance. One mistake and the forward blows by you, and then you have big problems.

Read more: Transitioning from back to front

Changing gears throughout your forward stride


By Diane Ness


The stride is a difficult skill to perform at different tempos. In a game, a player will probably never go end to end in an exact straight line. The stride will be interrupted with cross-overs, shuffle steps, gliding and restarts. What does that mean for learning the stride in a functional setting?

Read more: Changing gears throughout your forward stride

Outside edge strength


By Diane Ness


We all know how important it is to have strong outside edges while skating. For this article I would like to make sure everyone really has an understanding and an awareness of an outside edge. We will use an outside edge in any skating maneuver in which we lean over to the outside part of our skate. It may be used for a power turn, crossover or even transition. It is in my opinion, the toughest and most critical edge to execute.

Read more: Outside edge strength

Stride drills


By Diane Ness


A few weeks ago, I wrote an article about the three main ingredients of an efficient stride. I would like to share a drill that we got from former olympic speed skater Dave Cruikshank over the summer. It is one thing to understand how the technique should look, but it is another to understand what drills help accomplish this.

Read more: Stride drills