How Thick Are Hockey Boards? [Answered!]

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Hockey is one of the most popular sports across the world. Played on ice, hockey involves striking a puck towards a target, with aesthetics being of little importance.

While on its surface hockey seems like an easy sport to learn, there is a lot more to it than meets the eye. Despite its apparent simplicity, hockey is actually a very tricky game to master.

Here are some of the hidden complexities that you might not know about.

The Slippery Slope Of Ice

When you practise skating you will notice that ice is not as easy as it looks. Particularly in the winter, the ice becomes much smoother and more liquid, which makes it much more difficult to stay in place while moving around.

This is partly why kids find it so easy to learn how to skate. Their boots are usually larger than adult sizes, so they have more traction on the ice. Also, the ice is usually thicker and more solid in the winter, which makes it safer for kids to play on. In the summer, the opposite is often true and you will find kids playing in the street, despite the heat.

All this moisture on the surface makes it extremely dangerous if you do not know how to handle an accident or an injury properly. In the absence of elbow guards, you can injure your arm or wrist very easily by making a hard turn while on the ice. In such circumstances, it is recommended that you fall onto your back and protect your head with your arms, so that the fall does not hurt too much. These measures will help reduce the risk of serious injury in case of a crash.

The Importance Of Elbow Guards

As we mentioned above, the ice is more slippery when wet, and it is always better to have less contact with it. That is why, whenever you are on the ice, it is recommended that you wear elbow guards. These will help reduce the risk of injury from ice as well as falling objects or sticks that you may encounter while playing.

Despite their importance, elbow guards are not compulsory in hockey. Many players will choose to play without them, particularly in exhibition games or on frozen ponds, as it makes them feel more agile and unrestricted. Of course, this comes with a certain risk. You may twist an elbow or break a wrist if you do not use them properly or if you are not careful when removing them.

Learning To Take Care Of Yourself

Above everything else, hockey is a game of survival. You will either make it as a pro or you will fall by the wayside. One can only imagine how many injuries the players have to deal with on a regular basis, not to mention the constant mental strain of always having to keep your wits about you and be ready to take charge in case of an accident or injury. As the game itself is rather physical, you will also want to invest in good health and fitness equipment, so that you can keep up with your players and remain at the top of your game for as long as possible.

While you are at it, why not get some good skates and accessories, as well as team gear, so that you can represent your team with pride? Finally, do not forget about the nutrition aspect, as you need to keep your body strong and fortified, particularly if you want to play at the elite level.

All these elements add up to one thing – complexity. Even if you get the basics down, you will find that hockey is much more demanding and, in truth, quite challenging than it first appears.

The Slippery Slope Of Team Building

As an individual player, you may have the talent to make it to the NHL or you may not. However, on the team level, things become far more complex. You will want to build a team that can contend for the top spot in its league, not to mention challenge for international supremacy. In order to do this you are going to have to look far beyond your own individual skill sets and consider what you need to do to make the team work as a collective unit.

To complicate matters further, since you cannot rely on individual players to carry the load, you will have to consider what you are going to have to do in terms of team building. One option is to form a super-team that combines the skills of multiple players, with perhaps the best goalie being the leader of the pack. While this may work to bring down the cost of player acquisitions, it can also work against you, as you may find that you do not gel as well as you could, with so many new and different personalities mixed together. Imagine the strain that this may put on your relationship with your family and friends.

Where Do I Play?

If you are serious about hockey, then you may want to consider looking into the possibilities of playing in a professional league. The chances are that in your area there will be at least one professional hockey team, with the likely exception of the Atlanta Thrashers, who play out of their state. Even if there is no team in your area, that does not mean that you cannot play professionally. You can and many, many people do. However, in order to do this you will have to move somewhere where there is a pro team, as most leagues have tryouts at the start of the season, or post-seasons, if the league is established. In addition to this, most leagues require you to have an agent, who will negotiate contracts with team bosses.

The bottom line is that whether you play in a school or recreational league, or you decide to participate in a higher league, you will want to consider the resources available to you and the level of complexity that you can handle. Be realistic about your own capabilities and, whatever you do, have fun!

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