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Coaching Day 2009

by Staff Writer / Vancouver Canucks

General Motors Place was host to Coaching Day in BC 2009 on Sunday November 22. Over 350 minor hockey coaches from around BC were on hand to take part in the event that included on-ice and off-ice instruction. Tim Hortons sponsored the event and was there to greet early morning participants with coffee, donuts and muffins. Craig MacEwan, from Sportsnet Pacific was the MC for the event and was very interactive with the crowd, entertaining them with his own coaching stories. BC Hockey Branch Mentorship Coordinator George Cochrane came from Kamloops to talk to coaches about mentorship programs. He spoke about the ultimate outcome being improved athlete development through the establishment of a national coach mentoring program.

The on ice sessions started with BC Hockey specialty clinic instructor Craig Sherbaty, with support from Kevin Bathurst from Hockey Canada, demonstrating a series of five station skill workshops. BC Hockey team of the year Vancouver Atom 1 and Vancouver Minor Spirit Bantam A1 were put through the paces as they performed Sherbaty’s drills for the crowd.

Vancouver based performance consultant Saul Miller played into the minds of the coaches as he talked about building a positive performance identity through positive self talk and imagry. His ten minute lecture left an immediate impact on coaches.

Goaltending coach, Pasco Valano gave a 45 minute on-ice demonstration on goaltending drills and net space techniques. Coaches were eager to take notes on this hard to teach position, and Valano delivered with his broken down methods and simplistic approach to goaltending.

The coaches were then in for a treat as nearly the entire Canucks squad turned up for an optional game day practice. Ryan Walter shared a few words of encouragement and thanks to the coaches in attendance, and Rick Bowness explained what happens during a typical game day skate. After a late game the previous night in Edmonton, only three Chicago Blackhawks chose to skate during their optional morning skate. Coaches were able to watch a recovering Marian Hossa going through skating drills and taking shots on goaltender Antti Niemi.

All coaches were sent home with a Coaching Day manual which was full of valuable information on the Canucks Centre, BC Hockey, sports psychology, goaltending techniques and drill/practice plans for coaches to fill in and take home.

The Canucks Centre for BC Hockey wants to thank all the coaches who came out and were an integral part in making this event a success. Your dedication to helping ensure a successful future in BC hockey is recognized and greatly appreciated!

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Story by Leah Peden, Canucks Centre Student Associate

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