Summertime means tournament time!!

Tournament Time!!!!

Tournament Time!!!!

The picture above may not seem like a hockey picture to most but it is. The North American Roller Championship Hockey (NARCH) Westcoast Finals just finished in Irvine, CA. I was able to coach the 12U Huntington Beach Militia Gold team to a silver medal. I also won another silver medal myself while playing in the 40+ division for Team Kunnuk. As usual the California weather held true for a very hot and sunny week. My biggest concern for all the athletes was their hydration levels in this environment.

Water is very important for good health. We all know that. Most healthy adults need 3 liters of water per day. Some of that comes from the food we eat. The NATA recommends women drink 2 liters of water while men drink 2.5 liters. If you like math, try this: for every kilogram of bodyweight, you should drink 30 to 40 milliliters of water per day. Don’t wait until you are thirsty to drink as well. We don’t notice thirst until we lose 1-2% our bodyweight of water. The studies have shown there is significant decrease in athletic performance at 2% loss of water.

The best fluid to consume is water; however sports drinks have their benefits too because they combine fluid, electrolytes, and carbohydrate. Here are some suggestions to help increase fluid intake at training or competition. Drink cool (~59F) fluids in hot weather and warm fluids in cold weather. Fluid temperature can affect your body’s ability to regulate heat and cold. Sodium is critical for optimal cellular rehydration and should be included in drinks when athletes do not have the opportunity to consume electrolytes naturally found in food. Flavored sport drinks taste better which stimulates drinking, and thus, may improve hydration.

Signs and Symptoms of Dehydration:  Lack of concentration  Early fatigue  High perceived exertion in training  Trouble tolerating heat  Delayed recovery  Muscle cramps

Optimal hydration supports daily training and recovery. Dehydration’s effects can take hours to days to recover. Athletes need to develop strategies to monitor and adapt their hydration plan to intensity, duration, and frequency of training, fitness level, and environmental conditions

Loving Highlights or the Game?

I was to the Elite Baseball Development Podcast by Eric Cressey. On episode 15 his guest on the show was hitting coach Bobby Tewksbary. One thing that I heard that stuck with me as a coach is that how the younger athletes of today are bombarded with some much media and technology. Most youth leagues emphasize games over practice. Did you lose the game? No big deal because we will just play again and there will be a ribbon for you at the end.

Kids don’t sit down to watch full games of a sport since they can get on their phones and watch You Tube highlights all day. Then they go out and try to replicate the “me” moments like a big bat flip after a home run or a goal dance celebration when they score. What they don’t do is practice and work to get better at the skills needed to play their sport. They don’t watch the game for all the small things the pro athletes do to be there and or they imagine how hard they work to stay there.

Get to the gym with a coach like me to start building basic strength and movement patterns. Sessions should start at twice a week if possible. Sport skills can be included to make the sessions more fun, which it should always be fun. Active warm ups learned in the gym should be carried over to practice. This can lower your chance of injury. Preparing yourself at practice will then give you your best chance to be successful in games.

Love the game not the highlights.

Happy 4th of July!!

You need some motivation?


I find myself sitting in my office sometimes wondering if I have the motivation to get out and get a workout done. You know those days where maybe I have a light schedule and can go home early or stick around and get something done. Maybe I should consider how lucky I am to this problem. There are those out there much worse off than me and doing so much more. Click on the link below to see what I mean:

I just signed up for a charity hike. It’s outside my comfort zone and I have never done anything like it. But I know this is a goal I can achieve and help others while doing it. If you need motivation or just something to change up your routine, find a good cause like the Heroes Project. Feel great about doing something great for other people. Who knows? Feeling good and doing good for others might just become a good habit.

The World of Youth Sports

The world of youth sports has gotten crazy. Check out the below link to “The Price of Youth Sports” from Real Sports with Bryant Gumbel on HBO.

My kid kissing his first inline hockey trophy. Might have missed the point of this posting….

My kid kissing his first inline hockey trophy. Might have missed the point of this posting….

This topic reminds me of another article by Mike Boyle called “Prepare the Child for the Path.” This article was derived from a quote he uses: “Prepare the child for the path, not the path for the child.”

We as parents won’t always be there to pave the way for our children. Constantly insulating kids from difficult situations and consistently cleaning up the mess they create defeats the purpose of sport. We need youth sports to help teach kids about success and about failure. The failure lessons may be more important than the successes. We can’t let youth sports be all about success and scholarships instead of learning and sportsmanship. Children will learn what they live. Teach hard work, commitment, loyalty, and dedication. The key is to value education.

A Disturbing Trend in Children Becoming Overweight.

While going through the USA Hockey Coaching Module for age appropriate strength and conditioning, I came across a few statistics that stuck with me. The Head Strength Coach for USA Hockey, Darryl Nelson cited a study called Operation Readiness: Military Leaders for Kids.

  • 80% of children who were overweight at ages 10 - 15 were obese at age 25.

  • From 1998 to 2008, the number of states with 40% or more of their young adults who were overweight or obese went from 1 to 39.

  • On average, 18 - 24 year-olds in America are 34 lbs overweight

  • Our healthcare system spends over $75 billion annually for medical obesity expenditures.

As I looked into this topic a little more, another study showed that in the U.S, youth aged 2 - 19 years old from 1999-2000 to 2015-2016 had obesity rates that rose from 13.9% to 18.5%.

Whether it’s getting in the gym or playing some sports, let’s get the kids moving again and away from the hours of video games!!!

What is Long Term Athletic Development?

Here’s an explanation of Long Term Athletic Development. As children grow, there are stages at which certain types of training that best suit their age. Overtime, this training and participating in sports develops a more complete athlete. Mind you, every kid will benefit from almost any kind of training as long as it is done safely. As you see below, following a long term plan will enhance health and reduce injury.

Oh, and by the way grown ups - It’s not too late for you too!!


What is Physical Literacy for Kids?

In the description of myself and some of my training methods I use the terms “Physical Literacy” and “Long Term Athletic Development (LTAD).” I’ve got a couple images to help explain these terms as taken from the National Strength Coach’s Association LTAD Special Interest Group of which I am a member.

So basically this boils down to get some good exercise and try new things. This will help you learn how your body moves. Even though the focus is on them, it’s not just for kids either.