Purpose: To emphasize speed and change-of-direction training in a fun, athletic agility course. Also, to add introductory body-contact techniques.
Drill Structure/Coaching Points: Set up drill as shown. X1 and X2 should start belly down in front of the dividers. On whistle, X1 and X2 perform a log roll. After log roll, X1 and X2 jump over the divider, body-check the end wall (keeping stick down, head up and using shoulder, rear-end and legs to make contact against wall). X1 and X2 bounce off the wall, jump over the divider again, skate through cones as shown and race for the puck provided by coach. Winner gets to shoot on goalie, loser should backcheck and try to deny the shot.
Equipment: Several blue pucks, one intermediate net, six cones, two or four dividers.
Comments: This drill is excellent for age-appropriate skating. It matches perfectly with the 8U windows of trainability and emphasizes directional skating, using short bursts of speed by the players and several changes of direction while executing athletic moves with the rolls and jumps. This is also a good exercise to increase brain activity. The changes in direction will stimulate and help the brain to process, which will pay off at later stages of speed and skating development.