Sled (sledge as it's referred to outside the United States) hockey was invented at a Stockholm, Sweden, rehabilitation center in the early 1960s by a group of Swedes who, despite their physical disability, wanted to continue playing hockey.
Sled hockey follows most of the typical ice hockey rules with the exception some of the equipment. Players sit in specially designed sleds that sit on top of two hockey skate blades. There are two sticks for each player instead of one and and the sticks have metal pics on the butt end for players to propel themselves. Goalies wear basically the same equipment but do make modifications to the glove. Metal picks are sewn into the backside to allow the goalie to maneuver.
A few rinks around the country are sled accessible. Sled accessible rinks allow players to remain in their sleds and skate off the ice into the bench area. This requires that the bench area is flush with the ice and there is clear plexiglass replacing the white boards.
Sled hockey provides opportunity for many types of disabilities and there are opportunities available in local areas for recreation/competition all the way to the National Sled Team that plays in the Paralympics. Sled hockey is rapidly growing in the US and players are "hooked" once they touch the ice the first time.
Tryouts for the 2016-17 U.S. National Sled Hockey Team will be July 16-17, 2016, at the Northtown Center in Amherst, New York. For more information, click the link below.
The 2016 USA Hockey Sled Select Camp is now accepting nominations. On July 10-15, 2016 USA Hockey will hold the 12th annual Sled Select Camp in Amherst, NY at the Northtown Center.
This camp is an invite only. To attend players must first be nominated by coach.
This years’ Camp eligibility will be targeted to:
The USA Hockey Player Development Committee may also invite to the USA Hockey Select Sled Camp players under the age of 14 years of age but not younger than 12 years of age at the time the Camp takes place.
For more information, click here.
Are you looking for a Summer Sled Hockey Camp? Something instead of or even in addition to the USA Hockey Sled Hockey Select Camp? You are in luck. There are three local sled hockey camps scheduled this summer.
Sled Hockey Jamboree - June 24-26 -- Voorhees, NJ
Griff's Sled Hockey Camp - June 18-19 -- Grand Rapids, MI
Sled Hockey Development Camp - July 22-24 -- Columbus, OH
For more information on these three camps, click here.