When most of us consider a hockey game, the instant visual is usually a vast, echoing arena, perfectly designed for two teams to battle to the death in a quest to become the ultimate champions. The automatic assumption is that a decent game of hockey needs plenty of space, and this can be an obstacle for many fans and players.

What if we told you that everything you assumed you knew was false and that a full-size arena is not a requirement for many drills, training aids, and even smaller-scale games? Here at KwikRink, we have everything you need to get started in a place that is convenient for you; make the most of that vacant garage, revamp your backyard, or even transform a spare room!

Why Do I Need A Hockey Practice Area?

A hockey practice area on your own property is not only a super cool addition to any home; it can be an essential way for players to keep up their skills and stay in shape off-season and between games.

Having a personal practice area also offers the flexibility to train at a time that is convenient for you, perfect if you have a busy job, young children, or simply a hectic schedule. Instead of having to adapt your routine around training, you can make sure that your activity works for you, without having to worry about arranging childcare or organizing transport to another location!

This personal practice area can also be perfect if you have specific areas you are looking to target during your training. External coaching sessions are often ‘one-size fits all,’ and this can be frustrating if you find yourself continually running drills and practices which focus on skills you already have. Having your own space allows you to hone in on your weaknesses, and use targeted exercises and activities to boost your skills in the best way for your game.

How Can I Have My Own Rink In A Small Space?

You may think that you lack the square footage for a practice rink, but synthetic ice will make you think again. It comes in panels, so it is easy to purchase enough material for your space, no matter the size limitations.

Assemble your own alternative rink and be ready to go in no time. You can even add extras such as shooting tarps or a puck rebounder to help make the space more versatile and personalized to your needs.

What Can I Practice?

Part of the appeal of your small rink is that it is an ideal space for practicing different drills and techniques. The list of potential exercises is lengthy, but here are our top picks when it comes to hockey drills for smaller spaces.

The Quad Pass

This first exercise is a great way to help players develop the perfect pass, and the restricted space forces great concentration and attention. Four players work this drill, and it starts with Players 1 and 2 executing five passes between themselves, focusing on accuracy and soft hands – there isn’t the space to go hard.

After completing the fifth pass, Player 1 will do a touch-pass give and go with Player 3 before carrying out another touch pass to Player 4. All four players then rotate around the space, giving everyone a chance to try every position.

The 1 On 1

This next drill allows players to focus on their timing. Four lines are set up facing the zone at inline with the neutral zone face-off dots. When setting up, make sure that the cones for the defensive lines are slightly staggered; this offers a slight defensive advantage.

Both players start by carrying pucks and completing a figure-eight, both coming out of the turn on the outside of the rink. The defensive player returns the puck to their line coming out of the shape and then takes on the offensive player one on one.

Their focus is on stick position to discourage any potential shot. The job of the offense is to protect the puck and move their feet to get behind the defense.

Players can then switch in and out to practice different skills depending on their individual needs.

Stop And Start

This next activity is great for younger players and builds up accuracy and technique. Players execute starts and stops with a puck, before executing a power turn, and end by taking a shot. This keeps up the pace and takes skills back to the basics – perfect if you are getting back into shape, or having issues in a particular area.

The Perpetual Cycle

A smaller practice space makes The Perpetual Cycle even more of a challenge as great concentration is needed to avoid a collision! Start by dumping in a puck. Player 1 then goes to the corner to pick it up before cycling back. Player 2 follows and picks up the cycle, before the first player cuts across the top and drives to the net, and Player 2 passes for a one-time shot.

After making the pass, Player 1 from the other line dumps the puck in his corner. The player who just made the pass heads to the top of the circle drives it into the corner to pick up the dump and repeats the cycle again. This drill can be repeated without pause and is a perfect way to help players connect and come together, focusing on working as a team, passing, and making the smaller space work to their advantage.

Why Wait?

As you can see, a smaller space does not have to hold you back when it comes to practicing your hockey skills. At KwikRink, we offer a huge range of solutions which are the perfect fit for your particular needs and lifestyle, and ensure that you can train and practice in the way which best suits you. What are you waiting for? Get in touch today to start configuring your practice area, and make the most of that small space!

synthetic ice rink surrounded by white fencing and trees wrapped in white lights

The joy of a white Christmas is not a blessing everyone can experience. Lack of snow and cold needn’t stop would-be skaters from experiencing a winter wonderland in the form of an outdoor skating rink, though.

Living in warmer climates does not mean your business or community can’t benefit from an outdoor skating rink. Synthetic ice panels from KwikRink Synthetic Ice snap together in minutes, can be cleaned with a broom and a mop, and still provide the feel of real ice.

If you think buying a synthetic ice rink is cost-prohibitive, look into their rent-to-buy program. Renting a rink is a great way to test out the concept and then purchase the materials you need.

KwikRink Synthetic Ice has set up rinks all around the United States for the holidays. Here are just a few that you can check out if you happen to be in the area.

See for yourself all the innovative ways businesses and communities have incorporated ice rinks into areas where you wouldn’t think possible. Then, give KwikRink a call to get started right away on your synthetic ice rink rental.

Farmington, MO

The Farmington Convention and Tourism Bureau came up with the idea of an ice rink to help draw business into the downtown area during the chillier months. The problem was that wintertime in Missouri still isn’t always cold enough for a traditional ice rink.

KwikRink Synthetic Ice to the rescue! Supplying a few pallets of synthetic ice panels that snap and lock together like puzzle pieces was the perfect solution. Throw in some decorative fencing and rental skates (though everyone can use their own skates as well), and presto–residents and visitors have established a new wonderful winter tradition.

To make this idea even better, volunteers from different organizations staff the rink each night. That means skating is offered to the public for free. The volunteer groups get to take a portion of the skate rental fees and refreshment sales back for their fundraising efforts.

Create a new winter tradition, offer charitable organizations a way to raise some much-needed funds, and revitalize a business community – now that’s a way to make a synthetic ice rink work for everyone!

Season: now through the end of February 2020

Hours:

  • Monday – Thursday, 5-9 pm (through January 5 only)
  • Fridays, 5-9 pm
  • Saturdays, noon – 9 pm
  • Sundays, noon – 6 pm

Admission: $0, skate rental $2 or bring your own

Address:  Farmington Public Library

101 N. A Street (in the back parking lot)

Rink size: 112’ x 56’

Town of Dobson, NC

With average temperatures running between 30 and 50 degrees during the winter months, traditional ice rinks would be a bit of a lost cause in North Carolina. However, that didn’t stop the Town of Dobson from wanting to offer the traditional outdoor holiday activity.

They created an outdoor skating rink under an existing picnic shelter, and so far this season, they have received nothing but positive feedback on the venture.

They charge $5 for a 20-minute skating session, and that includes rental skates (visitors can also bring their own skates if they prefer). Visit Ice Skating in the Square for more info.

Season: now through January 19, 2020

Hours:

  • Fridays, 5-8 pm
  • Saturdays and Sundays, 2-8 pm

Admission: $5 for 20 minutes, includes skate rental or bring your own

Address:   Dobson Square Park

110 South Crutchfield Street

Rink Size: 60’ x 24’

Holdmdel, NJ

Located in the Holiday Village, as part of the Magic of Lights event, a synthetic ice rink gives visitors one more reason to tour the lights, shop local businesses, and enjoy some traditional winter activities regardless of the temperature outside.

Over a million lights are on display, with themes varying from Sports to Christmas Around the World, to Enchanted Tunnels, that visitors can drive through. At the end of the light show, there is a Holiday Village with regional vendors and ice skating for all to enjoy.

A little rain or snow won’t mar the 60’ x 40’ surface, and the rink cleans up in a snap with a broom or mop if needed.

Season: now through January 4, 2020

Hours:

  • Sunday – Thursday, 5-10 pm
  • Fridays and Saturdays, 5-11pm

Admission: Check out Magic of Lights for ticket information

Address: PNC Bank Arts Center

116 Garden State Parkway

Rink Size: 60’ x 40’

Your Town, USA

These are just some of the ways towns and businesses are incorporating skating rinks into their holiday venues around the country:

  • Offering new attractions to draw visitors to existing business areas
  • Allowing schools, churches, youth groups, and other charitable organizations to benefit by volunteering to run the rink and contributing a portion of the proceeds to their fundraising
  • Adding a rink to an existing holiday venue to freshen up a tradition
  • Converting existing park and rec facilities into skating areas where none existed before

Warmer temps are no longer a stopping point for setting up these traditional holiday activities. Where environmental factors would have prohibited these ventures in the past, the use of synthetic ice allows for a unique experience making your venue or event stand out from the others.

Glide up to 50 feet on one stride, skate backwards, and move effortlessly through skating transitions. No topical additives are needed and therefore no oily residue either. Skating on KwikRink Synthetic Ice is just like skating on the real stuff.

KwikRink’s rent-to-buy program is a great way to test out the concept. They offer:

  • Custom-sized synthetic ice rink tailored to your needs
  • Decorative fencing
  • Rental skates
  • Skate sharpeners
  • Rubber matting
  • On-site supervision and installation

At the end of the agreed-upon rental period, you can then purchase the specific materials you need going forward.

Visit these wonderful holiday venues and then start working with KwikRink Synthetic Ice now to get your next Winter Wonderland up and running.

Male Hockey player taping a hockey stickWith around half a million registered hockey players in the USA alone, and the numbers continuing to rise around the world, it is clear that hockey is a sport that is growing in popularity. The problem with this growing popularity is the increasing demand for ice time.

Practice ice time is limited, and the traditional ice hockey rink schedules are already full. Higher participation numbers also mean the tryout process is more competitive, upping the skill levels needed to make it onto any team.

A hockey training center would alleviate these problems. It can be a fantastic attribute to your local community, a sound business investment, and will help to continue to boost participation and enjoyment in an already popular sport.

Thinking that an ice arena is too big and too costly an undertaking? Think again! KwikRink Synthetic Ice provides a cost-effective and convenient alternative to natural ice that will fit any space. Contact us today to start imagining everything your training space could become.

Why ice hockey training?

Ice hockey is an exciting team sport, which is tons of fun. In addition, the training associated with hockey also boasts a wide range of health benefits and advantages for its participants.

Benefits achieved whether you are the star center for your local league or just looking for a more exciting way to stay in shape.

Enhancing communication and decision-making skills

The fast pace of the game requires speedy and accurate communication between team players. Excellent decision making and quick thinking are also needed to keep the game moving successfully. If that’s not enough, the endorphins released during exercise are also great for alleviating stress and anxiety.

Developing key reflexes

Hand-eye coordination is an important skill, and one significantly enhanced by playing hockey. Reaction times and overall balance are boosted. Reflexes, agility, and dexterity increase as well, thanks to fast-paced skating and passing drills.

Burning calories

The nature of ice hockey requires using short bursts of energy over brief periods. This quick acceleration burns an enormous number of calories in each match and training session.

Each player burns around 0.061 calories per pound per minute – a fantastic way to lose weight and stay in serious shape over an extended period! The skating and drills used in ice hockey training are similar to interval training, burning more calories and boosting metabolism.

Offering a full-body workout

Hockey is one of the best ways to provide a full-body workout.

It exercises all areas of the legs, such as hip flexors, hamstrings, and calves from the skating. Shoulder muscles, forearms, and triceps develop as well from the stick handling.

The sport can also improve bone strength, strengthen connective tissues, and increase your muscle mass, leading to a reduced risk of injury and better overall health.

Boosting the cardiovascular system

A healthy cardiovascular system

  • delivers more oxygen to your brain and muscles helping them to function more efficiently at all times,
  • stimulates the production of enzymes converting the food you eat into energy your cells can use, and
  • decreases your risk for other chronic illnesses.

Hockey develops muscular strength and boosts energy levels and stamina, helping to improve cardiovascular function in the long run.

Why a synthetic ice hockey training center?

As you can see, there are quite a few benefits that come from playing and training for ice hockey. The problem yet to be resolved, though, is the limited amount of space and time available for this training.

Hockey team members, as well as individuals with an interest in the sport, or those with a desire to reap the benefits of hockey training, will flock to a hockey training center. A unique business offering, a training center allows you to appeal to youth teams, adult leagues, and those looking for a new approach to fitness.

Traditional ice arenas can require massive amounts of space, are expensive to install, and costly to maintain. Synthetic ice offers a creative, cost-effective solution to each of these issues that can help to bring your business venture plans to life.

Fully customizable for smaller spaces

Unlike a natural ice rink, lubricated panels are tailored to your exact specifications, making it perfect for whatever shape and space you have available.

This customization means you are not restricted to full-sized hockey rinks but can create separate drill areas, resistance training spots, and other essential training sections for a comprehensive on-ice experience.

Lower capital investment

Synthetic ice is suitable for any climate and therefore does not require temperature-controlled enclosures during the warmer months or massive refrigeration systems to start. Fewer structural requirements and less equipment, mean lower initial capital outlay.

Lower operating costs

Melting ice requires frequent resurfacing with large pieces of specialized equipment. Underlying refrigeration systems often require annual shutdown periods for maintenance and repair.

However, self-lubricating synthetic ice panels do not require any type of resurfacing. The latest technology even eliminates the need for topical sprays. The only maintenance required is an occasional sweeping and mopping.

Designed to withstand professional hockey training regimens, these panels are resilient for up to a decade. This longevity will allow your business sufficient time to recover the initial investment before needing to schedule capital expenditures for typical wear and tear.

You need a hockey training center in your town

Full-scale ice hockey rinks are limited to the number of hours they have available for training and games. Most require annual shutdowns for maintenance as well, even further limiting their availability.

In the meantime, hockey participation rates continue to climb. There is a growing interest level at all age and skill levels. Even those with a casual interest in hockey, but looking for a fresh way to keep up with a physical fitness routine, are looking for spaces to train.

A new hockey training center would provide the solution. One utilizing synthetic ice with no required resurfacing, low maintenance, and material longevity would lead to lower on-going operating costs, resulting in higher profit margins.

Here at KwikRink, we have everything you need to start making your hockey training center a profitable reality. Get in touch today for a consultation and take your first steps towards that lucrative business venture!