What Age Is Pee Wee Hockey? Find Out Now!

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If you’re looking to get your child involved in hockey, one of the first questions you may ask is “What age do kids start playing pee wee hockey?” Pee wee hockey is a great way for young kids to build their skills and develop a love for the game.

Before getting started, it’s important to know what age range is appropriate for this level of play. Pee wee hockey typically includes players between the ages of 11 and 12 years old, although different leagues may have slightly different age ranges.

In addition to age requirements, there are other factors to consider when deciding whether pee wee hockey is the right fit for your child. You’ll want to take into account your child’s skill level and overall interest in the sport.

“Hockey isn’t just a sport – it’s a lifestyle.”

While the physical demands of hockey can be challenging, the rewards of participating in team sports and building new friendships can be immeasurable. By introducing your child to the world of pee wee hockey, you can help them experience all the excitement and joy that this beloved sport has to offer.

Understanding Pee Wee Hockey Age Groups

Hello and welcome to our guide to understanding pee wee hockey age groups. Pee wee hockey is an exciting and challenging sport for children who are just beginning their journey in ice hockey. It provides a great opportunity for them to develop their skills, learn teamwork, sportsmanship, and gain confidence on the ice. In this guide, we will discuss what pee wee hockey is, the age groups involved, as well as the rules and regulations that govern the sport.

What is Pee Wee Hockey?

Pee wee hockey is a type of youth hockey designed for players between the ages of 11-12 years old. It is usually played with either six or seven players on each team, including one goaltender. Players compete on a full-sized ice rink, and games consist of three periods lasting about fifteen minutes each.

“Pee wee hockey is an ideal way to introduce young athletes to the world of ice hockey,” says Paul Devorski, former NHL referee and current director of officiating at USA Hockey. “It teaches teamwork, leadership, cooperation, and respect both on and off the ice.”

In addition to regular gameplay, some leagues may also offer tournaments and playoffs where teams can compete for championships. These events offer a fun and competitive experience for players while helping to foster growth and development within the sport.

Age Groups in Pee Wee Hockey

The age range for pee wee hockey typically falls between 11-12 years old. The precise age groupings may vary depending on the league or organization, so it’s essential to check the specific requirements before registering your child.

Players are often divided into two separate levels based on skill level: AA and A. AA represents the more skilled and experienced players, while A is more suitable for beginners and those with less experience.

It’s crucial to keep in mind that safety is a top priority when it comes to youth hockey. Hockey Canada and USA Hockey have strict guidelines regarding body checking at the pee wee level. In most cases, full body checking is not allowed until players reach the bantam level (ages 13-14).

Rules and Regulations in Pee Wee Hockey

Like all sports, there are rules and regulations designed to ensure fairness and protect the safety of players on the ice. Below are some essential rules and regulations governing pee wee hockey:

  • Penalties: Penalties can be assessed for various actions such as tripping, high sticking, or unsportsmanlike conduct. Depending on the severity of the infraction, penalties may result in a player being temporarily or permanently removed from the game.
  • Icing: This occurs when a player shoots the puck across two lines, and no teammate has touched it before crossing the opposing team’s goal line.
  • Offside: Players must stay onside by keeping one skate inside the blue line as they enter the offensive zone.
“It’s important for parents and coaches to understand the rules and regulations of pee wee hockey,” says Devorski. “By promoting fair play and good sportsmanship, we can create a positive environment where children can learn valuable life skills through athletics.”

In addition to these basic rules, many leagues and organizations also require players to wear specific protective equipment, including helmets, mouthguards, neck guards, and shin pads, among others.

To conclude, pee wee hockey provides an exciting and challenging opportunity for young athletes to learn and grow within the sport. By following the rules and regulations governing ice hockey at this level, parents, coaches, and players can ensure a safe and enjoyable experience for all involved.

Factors That Determine Pee Wee Hockey Age Eligibility

Age Requirements

Pee Wee hockey is a youth league that is designed for players between the ages of 11 and 12 years old. Children who are outside this age range cannot participate in pee wee hockey until they become eligible.

The decision to set up an age limit for pee wee hockey was made with a view to enhancing player safety and promoting fair play. Younger or older children may not be ready physically, mentally, or emotionally to compete in a youth league of such intensity and competitiveness.

Skill Level

Apart from age requirements, skill level also plays a crucial role in determining eligibility for pee wee hockey. Coaches select players based on their abilities in skating, passing, shooting, checking, and overall performance in the game.

Some pee wee teams hold tryouts where prospective players can showcase their skills, while others accept all eligible players regardless of their skill levels. Either way, player evaluation remains an essential criterion for inclusion in pee wee hockey teams.

Physical Size

Another critical factor in determining pee wee hockey age eligibility is physical size or body weight. Some leagues have restrictions on how much a player should weigh to qualify. For example, in some regions, a child must weigh less than 120 pounds or less to play in the pee wee division.

This requirement is mainly intended to ensure that players do not possess too much strength, power, or mass compared to other children playing on the same team or opposing teams. Such disparities could lead to injuries, unfair advantages, and unsportsmanlike conduct during the game.


Participation in pee wee hockey may require prior experience in ice hockey or other skating activities. A child who has never learned how to skate or play hockey may not be ready for the pee wee level, which is more demanding than lower levels.

That being said, most leagues do not require prior experience as a prerequisite for joining an ice hockey team. They provide training programs where children can learn essential skills and techniques in preparing them for pee wee-level competition.

“Pee Wee hockey provides young players with an excellent opportunity to develop their physical health, mental agility, resilience, and teamwork skills while having fun playing one of North America’s most beloved sports.” – Hockey Canada

The age eligibility criteria for pee wee hockey target specific requirements that ensure player safety, fair play, and enjoyable competition. Parents should consult local league rules and regulations before registering their children for pee wee hockey, to determine eligibility based on their age, skill level, size, and experience. As with any youth sport, pee wee hockey can help children mature into confident and disciplined individuals by providing opportunities to exercise their bodies and minds, build supportive relationships, express themselves creatively, and feel valued within their community.

Benefits of Pee Wee Hockey for Young Players

Physical Health Benefits

Pee wee hockey is played by children aged 11 and 12 years old. At this age, they are growing and developing at a rapid pace, making it important to engage in physical activities that promote proper growth and development. Hockey provides an excellent opportunity for children to achieve physical fitness and agility.

The game of hockey involves skating, stickhandling, shooting and body checking. These skills require good balance, coordination, speed, strength, and endurance. Therefore, playing pee wee hockey helps develop the cardiovascular system, builds muscular strength and endurance, improves motor control and coordination, and enhances overall body fitness.

“Hockey requires you to be agile, strong, quick, and maintain stamina throughout each game. It’s great exercise for young players, helping them increase bone density while also improving their lung capacity.” – Rick Nash, Former NHL Player

Mental Health Benefits

In addition to the physical benefits, playing pee wee hockey also has significant mental health advantages for youngsters. Hockey encourages teamwork, cooperation, dedication, discipline, sportsmanship, and communication amongst peers, strengthening social relations between team members and promoting friendship outside of the rink.

Hockey teaches children to set goals and work towards achieving them, thus, enhancing traits like determination, perseverance, confidence, motivation, and self-esteem. Winning games boost morale and instills pride in one’s abilities, whereas losing games provide opportunities for personal growth and reflection on areas where improvement is needed.

“Playing competitive sports, such as hockey, offers us all the chance to become our best selves. Sports teach us about perseverance, hard work, teamwork, leadership and so many lessons that we can’t learn from anywhere else” – Karen Crouse, The New York Times.

Pee wee hockey offers numerous benefits for young players which promote both physical and mental well-being. Playing this game prepares them not only to excel on the ice but also in everyday life.

Preparing Your Child for Pee Wee Hockey Tryouts

Physical Preparation

What age is Pee Wee Hockey? It’s generally for kids aged 11-12 years old, and it can be an exciting time for children who are passionate about the sport. However, before your child tries out, they need to ensure that they’re physically prepared to handle the demands of hockey.

A few months prior to tryouts, encourage your child to start exercising regularly. This will help develop their strength, endurance, and speed – all important factors when it comes to playing hockey.

Your child should focus on flexibility, cardiovascular conditioning, weight training, and sprinting drills. These exercises will not only make them more agile but also improve their reaction time.

Mental Preparation

The pressure of hockey tryouts can often cause children to feel anxious, nervous, or stressed. To help combat this, it’s vital to focus on mental preparation in addition to physical exertion.

Mental toughness is just as significant as any other aspect of sports, helping children stay grounded under stressful situations like tryouts. Before trying out, talk to your child and let them express their concerns openly so you can address them together. Tell them to visualize themselves getting through the tryout successfully and remaining calm and focused under pressure.

If possible, take your kid to one of the ice rinks participating in the tryout a couple of times before to get used to its surroundings; getting more familiar with the layout gives off the feeling of being “at home.”

Equipment Preparation

Hockey players need various types of equipment to keep injuries at bay while playing. Ensuring that your child has the right gear can not only save them from injury but also help them feel more confident on the ice.

Before tryouts, take an inventory of your kid’s hockey equipment to make sure everything fits and functions adequately. Proper-fitting gear will prevent chafing and rubbing that can be injurious for skin or affect how they skate.

If you’re unsure about any aspects of equipment care, don’t hesitate to speak with a coach as they will guide you through this process. Packing up ahead of time is also advised since it’ll reduce stress levels before trying out.

“Success isn’t always about greatness. It’s about consistency. Consistent hard work leads to success. Greatness will come.”
Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson

Final Thoughts

Pee Wee hockey is all about having fun while developing skills in a team setting. While winning is always nice, it’s not everything; emphasizing this point to children helps them understand that we learn and grow even when challenged by defeat.

Trying out involves preparing kids physically, mentally, and ensuring all their sports gears are organized and dependable; keeping these three points in mind allows children to enter tryouts confidently and without anxiety. Always remember – Pee Wee Hockey is one of those experiences numerous individuals cherish long after playing actively ends!

Important Pee Wee Hockey Safety Tips Every Parent Should Know

Protective Gear

One of the most important things to consider when your child is starting out in pee wee hockey is ensuring that they have the proper protective gear. This includes helmets, facemasks, mouthguards, shoulder pads, elbow pads, gloves, pelvic protectors, shin guards, and skates.

The helmet must fit snugly on their head and should be chosen carefully, as this will act as their main protection against concussion. The facemask or cage must also fit securely to ensure there is no obstruction to vision while still protecting the face from pucks and sticks.

Mouthguards are another essential piece of equipment that prevents injuries to teeth, gums, tongue, and lips during collisions or falls. Elbow pads, shoulder pads, and gloves protect the body during checking and other forms of play, while pelvic protectors shield the lower abdomen, groin, and thighs from injury. Finally, shin guards and skates prevent ankle and leg injuries.

Proper Warm-up and Cool-down

A warm-up before the game or practice can help reduce the risk of injury. The objective of a warm-up is to increase blood flow, stretch muscles, and lubricate joints by raising the body’s temperature gradually. It should last between 10-15 minutes, with dynamic stretching exercises being used for optimal results.

Cooling down after a game or practice is equally important as it helps return the body back to its resting state slowly. A cool-down involves light exercise such as jogging, walking, or static stretching, held for a longer duration compared to the warm-up phase. Doing so will help relieve muscle tension, reduce lactic acid buildup, and aid recovery.

Checking and Body Contact Rules

One of the more significant parts of pee wee hockey is checking and body contact. It’s essential to educate your child about the basic rules of safe play, such as not making contact from behind or into the boards. They must also learn how to make defensive contact without resorting to illegal hits or techniques that could cause injury to themselves and others.

The USA Hockey Body Checking Awareness program teaches players at every level how to check safely, including proper angling, separating an opponent from the puck or gaining access to the puck-all while avoiding head contact. Referees, coaches, and parents reinforce these principles constantly, emphasizing safety over “winning at all costs.”

“We want a culture change that says there’s nothing weak about taking steps to prevent concussions.” -Matt Sacks (Hockey Canada Chief Executive Officer)

As your child takes up pee wee hockey, it pays dividends to ensure that their gear fits well, they warm-up and cool-down appropriately, and follow the rules for safe playing on ice. By following safety measures, you can significantly help reduce any chance of serious injuries occurring and support your child in developing a love of hockey that would last a lifetime.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the age range for Pee Wee hockey players?

The age range for Pee Wee hockey players is typically between 11 and 12 years old. This is considered a critical age for developing fundamental hockey skills and technique.

What are the rules and regulations for Pee Wee hockey based on age?

The rules and regulations for Pee Wee hockey vary based on age. Players are typically required to wear full hockey gear, including a helmet, shoulder pads, elbow pads, gloves, shin guards, and skates. Checking is also introduced at this level, but it is limited to open-ice and cannot be done along the boards.

What are the benefits of starting Pee Wee hockey at a young age?

Starting Pee Wee hockey at a young age can provide numerous benefits, including improved physical fitness, development of teamwork and social skills, and increased confidence. It can also help players develop a love and passion for the sport that can last a lifetime.

What kind of equipment do Pee Wee hockey players need?

Pee Wee hockey players require full hockey gear, including a helmet, shoulder pads, elbow pads, gloves, shin guards, and skates. Additionally, they will need a stick and a hockey bag to carry their equipment to and from the rink.

What are the typical skills and techniques taught in Pee Wee hockey?

Pee Wee hockey typically focuses on developing fundamental skills and techniques, such as skating, stickhandling, passing, shooting, and checking. Players are also taught teamwork and sportsmanship, as well as the importance of hard work and dedication both on and off the ice.

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