May 19, 20, 21
Olympic Arena, Warroad, MN
Saturday 10-11:30am & 3-4pm
“From what I witnessed, you teach the true definition of shooting properly. You explain why, when, how. Those things are at the very core of getting a kid better.”
“My daughter really enjoyed the shooting camp last year, and it benefitted her a lot this year. Hope you’re coming back next summer!”
Kenora, Ontario, CANADA
“Thanks for your clinic and enthusiasm for the kids to play such a great sport. And thank you again for all that you do to inspire hockey families!”
Bill and Stacy
Devils Lake, North Dakota
“1) Will had a fun time at your camp
2) His form is now much improved
3) He suddenly has a lot more velocity on his shot both on and off ice
4) He is starting to realize the value of specific training (as am I…..my first hockey kid)
5) We will be back and I will recommend your camp to people.”
Eden Prairie, MN
FAQ’s about Lamplighter Hockey
Off-ice can be a productive setting for practicing and improving your shot. I’ve tried my camps both on and off ice and found that the off-ice environment yields excellent results. Many of the drills, are, in fact, more difficult to perform off-ice than on, so when the athlete transitions to the ice, they will find it easier to shoot when they get back on the ice.
Won’t my shot be affected off-ice because I’m shorter in shoes than my skates?
Kids are always growing. Kids can grow several inches in a short time, which will always affect the way the stick fits the child. Elite hockey players routinely practice their shots in an off-ice setting.
Why don’t we use radar guns to measure progress?
Radar guns are a gimmick used to justify the validity of a camp or clinic. Shot development includes more than just velocity. Accuracy and the quickness of the release are just as important as how fast the puck is moving. It is difficult to measure shot velocity and see results in a weekend or even several weeks. Shot development occurs over several months with dedicated practice and a solid program to follow.
Why do you take up to 15 kids in your camps?
I used to only take up to six kids per group during my shooting camps. I found that after 30 minutes the kids would start to tire out and they would form bad habits. A lot of the shooting drills we do require partners and I’ve found having 2 athletes at each net works the best. The ratio of shooting to rest time more closely simulates what the athlete would see in a game; my camps better simulate the game experience.
Why do you have mixed ages/genders in your camps?
One of the reasons that so many very good hockey players are produced in rural areas, more specifically northern Minnesota, is the fact that kids of all ages/genders are often sharing the same sheet of ice in an open hockey, aka rink rat hockey setting. This allows the younger kids to see up close how the older players, whom they idolize, play and practice the game. For example, having high school aged kids in the same shooting camp as mites helps the mites because they have someone to look up to and emulate. Their learning environment is twofold. They learn from the instructor and the older players. It challenges them even more.
What should I look for in an instructor?
The NHL has proven that the best players do not make the best coaches or instructors. You should look for someone who can teach your son/daughter. Mike Babcock never played a game in the NHL, yet he has won a Stanley Cup, Olympic gold medal, an IIHF World Championship, and a Canadian college title. There are Hall of Fame players who have coached in the NHL with limited success. There will always be exceptions to this rule such as the quality of the players on the team, and the owner’s commitment to winning, etc., but generally speaking teachers make very good coaches. Mike Babcock never played in the NHL and could arguably be one of the most successful coaches in the last decade, and he has a physical education degree from a Canadian university.
How can I improve my shot even more?
Try this simple drill. Have your son/daughter shoot a lightweight blue puck. Then have them shoot a regular black puck. They will tell you, and you will see, that the blue puck is easier to shoot. The blue puck is lighter; therefore it is easier to shoot. If you want to shoot quicker and faster, you need to get stronger. An easy way to do this is to use stick weights or weighted pucks. Both have their advantages and disadvantages. There is a chart on this website that explains this. If you do not shoot with a stick weight or weighted pucks you are doing a disservice to yourself. We hope you buy ours, but if you don’t, then you should still use something that will help with strength development.
Stick selection is also important. See a reputable stick retailer to make sure you have the right stick. The shaft diameter, length, lie, flex, and curve are all critical to success.
Shooting is an attitude. You have to want the puck and want to shoot it. There is a right time and a wrong time to shoot. In my camps I teach the athletes about the right and wrong times to shoot. Think of it this way. If Steven Stamkos is on a 2 on 1 and he doesn’t have the puck, his stats have proven that whomever the puck carrier is, they NEED to get him that puck because of his incredible goal scoring ability. Many top goal scorers actually have high assist totals because they shoot the puck often, and their shots end up as rebounds that result in goals. Ironically, if you want more assists, try shooting the puck more. Make sure you hit the net and if it doesn’t go in maybe the rebound will bounce to your teammate and they will bury the rebound and you pick up a helper – because you shot the puck!
How many shots should I take?
What is more important than how many shots you take is the ratio of shots taken with and without resistance (weights) and stressors. Don’t fall into the trap of shooting 1000’s of pucks and signing up for these 10, 000 shot clubs just to say you did. You need a lot of repetition and the 10,000 shot clubs are great for that; however, you need to practice in an environment that challenges you and simulates game conditions. Anyone can shoot 1000’s of pucks without any stress, but once you introduce a stressor into the equation, it is much more game-like. My camps begin with basic skill acquisition and then move quickly into adding stressors that allow the athlete to adapt quickly in game situations and shoot with positive results. So, to answer the question: the ratio of shots taken with a stick weight to non-weighted stick should be 9:1 for strength development and velocity, lower that ratio to 2:1 for accuracy. Someone who shoots fewer pucks in a challenging environment can yield better results than someone who shoots more pucks in an easy environment.
What about goalies?
Goaltenders need to work on their shooting, too. My stick weight works well with composite goalie sticks and I welcome goaltenders in my shooting camps. They do similar drills as the skaters do, and they will do this both with and without their goalie glove and blocker.
What is the difference between your spring camps and fall camps?
Spring camps focus more on shot development (quick release and velocity). Athletes will be shown how to do drills that they can practice during the summer to improve their shooting. The fall camps focus more on preparing for tryouts and getting ready for the winter season. In the fall, athletes will do drills that are less about developing speed and power, and more about simulating difficult game conditions that can help them during the season. There is not enough time in the fall to see drastic improvements in your shooting before the season gets going; however, if an athlete dedicates themselves to practicing during the winter, they will see positive results.
Why should I send my hockey player to Lamplighter Hockey Skills Camps?
There is no better training than purposeful and structured repetition, based on methodical principles. Between the shooting camp and the stick weight – it works.
In May of 2009, I began instructing shooting clinics out of the Olympic Arena in Warroad, MN. It became obvious to me, through many years of coaching youth hockey, that there was never enough time for coaches to work on critical individual skills in hockey during regular season practices.
The setting of the shooting camp is not what would be considered the latest in modern training technology. Plain and simple: we shoot pucks – over and over and over. We improve technique and we put the athletes into extremely difficult shooting situations. There are no machines that pass pucks and no computers that monitor progress; we aggressively pursue perfection through repetition and hard work. When the pucks need to be picked up, we grab a bucket, pick them up and shoot them again.
About the Instructor: Tim Slukynsky
• Born and raised in Portage la Prairie, Manitoba, Canada
• Hockey scholarship to University of North Dakota, 1993
• Completed Bachelor of Education, majoring in Physical Education from University of Regina, Saskatchewan, Canada
• Played in the Manitoba Junior Hockey League, Saskatchewan Junior Hockey League, Western Hockey League
(Canadian Tier 1), NCAA, Canadian University League, Western Professional League
• Former Acceleration Minnesota hockey trainer in Twin Cities
• Youth hockey coach for 10 years; USA Hockey Certified – Level 3 Coach
• Owner, operator of Lamplighter Hockey, LLC www.lamplighterhockey.com
(high performance hockey training company based in Warroad, Minnesota, focusing on shooting/stick handling)
I grew up playing hockey in Western Canada and played in three different junior leagues in Canada, the NCAA for the University of North Dakota Fighting Sioux, the University of Regina Cougars, and briefly in the Western Professional Hockey League, before hanging up the blades. My coaching style, much like my Canadian heritage, is a melting pot of all these experiences. I was fortunate to have many coaches along the way – and have incorporated the best attributes of many of them.
During my career I scored a lot of goals, missed a lot of breakaways, hit too many posts, broke a few sticks in frustration, and experienced dry spells where the puck just wouldn’t find a way across the goal line. This career led me to the University of Regina (Saskatchewan, Canada), where I earned a degree in Physical Education.
All trainers should have a knowledge of the game, but more importantly, they should know how to communicate that knowledge. My experience has given me this skill. Having been trained as a teacher and having played the game at so many levels, I have the ability to break down skills step by step, rebuild them, and in doing so, help give the athletes the opportunity to achieve success.
How does Stamkos do it? Practice, practice, practice
By Dan Rosen – NHL.com Columnist
Stamkos told NHL.com that he started practicing his shot when he was 9 or 10 years old.
“I could skate with the best of them, but I couldn’t shoot,” he said. “I couldn’t get the puck off the ice and I was always one of the smaller kids.”
Stamkos’ father, Chris, brought him to a shooting school twice a week. There he would learn the proper technique for shooting the puck while practicing in full gear on synthetic ice.
“It’s like a golf swing or a tennis shot. You don’t have to be the biggest guy to have the hardest shot,” Stamkos said. “I realized at a young age that technique was the most important thing, so I shot 400 to 500 pucks every session and just got better and better.”
Stamkos didn’t deal with one-timers in those practice sessions. That developed after he saw his shot drastically improve.
“You just keep on it, shooting pucks in the summer, and before and after practices to this day I’m still practicing my one-timer,” Stamkos said. “I think it’s such a good shot in today’s game with how good the goalies are. If you give them that extra split second by stopping the puck on your stick they’re going to be there.”
Click here to download this great article on Parents and Players
“I’m going to tell you my pet peeve: it’s the coaches saying, “Pass the puck, pass the puck!” and I hear the parents yelling, “Pass the puck, don’t be a puck hog!” Let me tell you something: everybody that shoots the puck scores goals. It’s only natural. Pavel Bure – he had the most shots in the league last year and he scored the most goals. How about Brett Hull? Patrick Roy must have been dreaming about him. Shoot the puck, kids, that’s how you score.”
-Don Cherry (1999-2000 Season)
Interested in the skills clinics, but can’t make it to Warroad? Contact Lamplighter Hockey about coming to your community.