As most hockey players know, one of the most important aspects of the game is strong legs. Your skating speed, explosion, and shot power comes from your legs. The stronger your legs, the longer you can skate on a shift and in a game without getting tired too. One great way to train and strengthen your legs when you aren’t on the ice is a hockey balance board.
A hockey balance board is a versatile piece of off-ice training equipment. You can do both drills and workouts on it and it will help you develop both strength and real on-ice hockey skills. Building leg strength is just one great feature of this piece of equipment. Here are some tips on how to build leg strength in a hockey balance board.
Just Use It
Quite possibly the best thing about a hockey balance board is that all you need to do to strengthen your legs is stand on it! The simple act of finding your balance, holding it, and then moving back and forth is a great leg workout.
To get started, you may want to set up on a softer surface like carpet or grass. This will create more friction so the cylinder doesn’t roll as fast and provide some padding if you fall. Use your stick to balance, either by holding it on the ground or across your body. Once you’re up, see how long you can stay on. When you get more comfortable, you can start putting a small amount of pressure on one leg, then the other to rock back and forth and stay balanced. There’s your first leg workout!
Leg Strengthening Exercises
Once you get the hang of the hockey balance board, you can start doing targeted exercises to strengthen your legs. Here are a few of our favorite.
Slowly bend deeply, as far down as you can go, and stand back up while balancing on the board. The slower you go, the more benefit you’ll get.
With your hands on the board ad your body in a push-up position, alternate bringing your legs up to your chest like you are running or, as the name suggests, climbing a mountain.
Medicine Ball Toss
Take a knees-bent hockey stance and, using a heavy ball, bounce a ball of a wall and catch it. If you have a friend with a hockey balance board, even better! Play catch with them. This drill will engage your core and doing it in a hockey stance will strengthen your legs as well.
There are a TON of stickhandling drills you can do while balancing on your hockey balance board. These drills can help build your leg strength while also making you a much more comfortable and effective stickhandler. Just make sure you do two things while doing stickhandling drills.
First, you want to always keep your knees bent in a hockey stance position. This will help you balance and will also build leg strength. Second, you want to keep your eyes and head up at all times. This will build core strength and muscle memory so you’ll be able to pick out the pass or deke the goalie when game time comes.
A hockey balance board is a key piece of off-ice training equipment to help build leg strength. After using one, you will become a faster, more explosive skater with a harder shot because of the strength it helps build in your legs and core. Check out the hockey balance boards and all the other great off-ice training products at SnipersEdgeHockey.com.
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