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!

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!

Hockey is enjoying a boom in recent years. The National Sporting Goods Association (NSGA) reports that in the 18 states and the District of Columbia that play under NFHS rules, hockey participation is up from 44,669 players in 2017, to 44,933 players last year.

A surge in girls’ hockey programs since 2013 has resulted in record-setting female participation in the sport.  With more players of all ages and demographics seeking ice time, rink design that’s versatile, efficient, and flexible is a necessity for new and existing hockey programs alike.

The business-savvy synthetic ice rink costs from KwikRink Synthetic Ice make your hockey programming and business goals easily attainable. Call us today to begin custom-designing your state-of-the-art synthetic rink.

Synthetic Ice: a flexible alternative

Natural ice may have been the preferred hockey playing surface for generations, but synthetic ice allows for the exponential expansion of playing and practicing opportunities with a superior business model.

If you’re in a region where the weather is warm most of the year, a natural ice rink could be cost-prohibitive and environmentally taxing.

Regardless of the climate outside, indoor natural ice center owners must expend significant funds on creating the rink surface, as well as flooding, and freezing systems. They also must maintain the ice after freezing. That means extra dollars for Zambonis and the staff to run them.

Synthetic ice offers a lower-cost and low maintenance alternative to spendy indoor natural ice arenas. Custom-cut ice tiles lock together like puzzle pieces and boast easy clean-up and glide maintenance with simple spray cleaners and a wipe-down with a soft cloth.

With KwikRink Synthetic Ice, you can leave your ice rink set up for hockey and other ice sports 100 percent of the time, or you can place and remove your rink with ease for other recreational or community programming in your arena space.

Further, with synthetic ice, hockey entrepreneurs can opt for a non-traditional arena location, like converted warehouse space, community centers, gymnasiums, or other large multi-purpose venues.

Synthetic ice and natural ice quality match

Synthetic ice technology has undergone a revolution in the last decade. With new materials that eliminate the need for extra blade lubrication, skaters can lace up and go, just like on a natural rink.

As long as you maintain a clean skating surface, skater glide for hockey and other ice sports (like broomball, figure skating, and pleasure skating) is nearly identical to natural ice.

Skaters can sprint, stop, turn, shoot, and check on KwikRink Synthetic Ice just as they do on natural ice.

The small differential in glide between synthetic ice and a natural skating surface also creates a training effect in hockey players. Skaters will push off, stop, and turn with a slightly stronger muscular power stroke on synthetic ice, which develops more strength and stamina.

If and when a player has practice or a game on a natural rink after training on synthetic ice, their performance and experience will improve.

It’s a similar phenomenon to Olympic athletes who train in high altitude and compete at low altitude–they’ve got an edge over their competition because of their high-altitude physical adaptations.

More skaters, more ice demand

Skating of all kinds is emerging as a growing recreational activity, according to Grand View Research. Families with increased disposable income are looking toward ice skating as a fun and different way to hang out together, enjoy team dynamics, and compete with others.

Even though seasonal outdoor rinks in colder climes are cost-effective and environmentally friendly, their use is limited to a few months of the year. Indoor arenas are weather-independent and remain open and potentially profitable year-round.

Synthetic rinks make excellent business sense, especially for owners and managers of multi-use facilities.

Lower overhead, higher ROI

When a program director can assemble a rink of any size in minutes with no freezing time, she can run a hockey team practice for an hour a few times per week. When a practice is over, the rink comes apart, stacks, and stores for the next programmatic demand.

KwikRink Synthetic Ice tiles come apart and stack easily in an equipment closet or the corner of your programmed space. Throw a cover over the stacked tiles to keep them dust-free and gliding well each week.

Our highest quality ice tiles last up to 10 years when properly cleaned, so once you’ve invested your start-up capital in the tiles, there’s little extra cost to keeping a superior skating service for years of team registrations.

It’s easy to conclude that the ROI on a quality synthetic ice rink outranks that of natural ice. If your hockey program overhead is lower, it may also offer you more flexibility on the program fees you’ll charge in your market.

This flexibility could make your program accessible to a wider cross-section of players who may not otherwise have tried the sport. Growing your hockey audience by making the sport more accessible to different players creates a reliable revenue stream in uncharted hockey territory.

Expand your synthetic ice rink revenue with additional services

When you’ve opened your KwikRink Synthetic Ice rink, you have expanded opportunities for revenue. With hockey and other ice sports forecasted to grow in participation, opening a hockey program or arena makes sound business sense.

Providing skate rental, private and group lessons, other skating activities like open skating, figure skating, and broomball leagues add to your profit while keeping customers engaged and confident in their developing skating skills.

Your creativity and the people on your team have the freedom to innovate new ice programming as the seasons roll by. Chances to cater to your hockey parents while their kids skate, parties and events, and other community engagement tools offer still more revenue streams to your growing hockey empire.

KwikRink Synthetic Ice: Your partner in custom rink design

Whether you’re building a regulation ice arena pad from the ground up, or re-purposing a multi-use space, KwikRink is your partner in creating the custom synthetic ice rink that meets your business needs. Call us today to begin planning the rink of your future.

09
October

Hockey Is On the Way Up

Posted by KwikRink
Man wearing a blue suit, red striped tie, red hockey gloves and red helmet, holding a hcokey stick.

Whether you live in snow country or tropical climes, hockey is everywhere these days. NHL fandom is robust as always, and safety gear innovations keep kids and adults playing injury-free for longer. Hockey parents are still the norm from Minnesota to Texas.

Despite our changing climate affecting outdoor ice seasons, hockey is here to stay. To that end, the hockey industry always promotes ways to stay ahead of the curve in terms of ice costs and program revenue.

KwikRink Synthetic Ice is the leader in maintenance-free, state-of-the-art synthetic hockey ice rink design. Contact us today and get a free custom rink quote for any space or application.

Women players, women winners

According to The Ice Garden, women’s hockey participation has grown by a whopping 17.6% since 2010. Nearly 80,000 women are registered players with USA Hockey. And, that number has steadily increased since the US women’s gold medal win at the 2018 Olympic Games in Pyeongchang.

Women continue to add depth and breadth to the sport and have proven they can play every bit as tough as the guys and come out on top.

At Kwikrink, we’re excited to be part of serving the growing demand for ice time from female players. We continue to champion hockey programming for all.

Our synthetic hockey ice systems make program launch and participation more accessible and more profitable for community organizations and coaches alike. Here’s how.

Benefits of Synthetic ice over natural ice

Versatility: Kwikrink Synthetic Ice can be set up anywhere in just about any dimension. All you need is a flat surface. Our ice works well in the following locations:

    • Church social gathering rooms
    • Event centers
    • School gyms and cafeterias
    • College field houses
    • Community center multipurpose rooms and gyms
    • Convention centers
    • Outdoor skate parks or basketball courts

Non-weather dependent. Synthetic Ice glides, whether it’s -40 degrees or 85 degrees. Your rink space never has to be climate controlled with Kwikrink synthetic ice. Though a little air conditioning might be helpful if you’re running a full-on team practice in hot weather!

Further, there’s no need for a built-in, floor-based water freezing system with KwikRink materials. You’ll simply lock the ice tiles into place, strap on your skates, and glide for as long as you want.

Lower cost. Since our synthetic ice needs no additional equipment to keep it functional, your hockey program overhead costs just dropped significantly.

When you factor in the initial capital of freezing equipment, Zamboni and driver, as well as the maintenance and added energy costs to maintain natural ice, synthetic ice is a no-brainer to improve your hockey program profit margins and registration accessibility dramatically.

Low maintenance. Our infused surfaces promise years of low-maintenance, superior glide, and a clean surface guarantees the best performance.

Your cleaning schedule will depend on ice usage frequency, storage location and condition, and environmental factors. In other words, if your synthetic rink is outside, you’ll likely clean it more often for optimal performance.

Cleaning KwikRink Synthetic Ice is a breeze. Spray the surface with a multipurpose cleaning solution, let sit for a few minutes to break up any dirt buildup, and then wipe clean with a cloth. No Zamboni required, although you might want to use a small commercial floor scrubber on larger rinks.

KwikRink Synthetic Ice boasts 95% of natural ice glide. KwikRink Synthetic Hockey Ice boasts a comparable rate of glide to natural ice. You can work on all the sprints, stops, turns, and shots-on-goal that you would on a natural surface, with a nearly imperceptible difference in feel.

Strength and stamina gains. Because there is a slight glide differential from synthetic to natural ice, your team will develop more strength and stamina on the synthetic surface.

Similar to Olympic athletes training at high altitudes, our systems may help your team perform better when they play on natural ice from time to time.

Synthetic Ice: A profitable choice for “dead” space

If you run a large facility like a church, community center, warehouse, senior center, or athletic facility, you’ve likely got “dead” space from time to time. A synthetic hockey rink may add a revenue stream to unused floor space.

Our ice tiles are fully adaptable to your space availability and dimensions. Plus, our tiles feature a “snap-together” design.

Set up and tear-down are quick and manageable. Our tiles will store in any closet or even stacked on the perimeter of your space for easy program conversion.

You can easily convert from basketball practice to a hockey game or clinic in one evening or afternoon with synthetic hockey ice from KwikRink.

Profitability

Synthetic hockey ice provides a speedy avenue to revenue, especially if you live in a hockey-friendly community, or if you’re pioneering a hockey program in a new region.

With the easy set-up and versatility of KwikRink synthetic ice, all you need is a coach and a few players to build a team and some hockey momentum. Since equipment logistics are a no-brainer, you can utilize your business acumen by spreading the word and marketing a new youth or adult sports opportunity.

Our tiles travel and snap together effortlessly in small locations. That makes them great for community demos, school visits, mall expos, or neighborhood gatherings to build buzz and allow potential hockey players to try out the ice.

With a qualified coach and a simple online registration system, you can effortlessly collect fees and waivers, then move on to promoting teamwork, health, fitness, and hockey fun in no time.

Fundraisers, special events, and corporate entertainment with synthetic hockey ice lend further revenue stream opportunities to your organization. All you need is a flat space and a pair of skates to make the event a success.

Contact KwikRink Synthetic Ice for hockey in a snap

Our team stands ready to help you build the custom synthetic ice hockey rink that fits perfectly for your programming and space needs. Give us a call today, and we’ll help you measure and craft the ice your community will enjoy for many seasons to come.

Great hockey can happen anywhere, anytime with KwikRink Synthetic Ice systems.

 

 

 

home synthetic ice rink

Plastics were first used as a substitute for ice for skating in the 1960s. Synthetic ice rinks were made from materials such as polyoxymethylene plastic, developed by DuPont in the 1950s. In 1982, the first full-sized artificial rinks were produced with High-Density Plastics. They were completed using interlocking panels.

So, artificial ice has been around for a while. And, there were, of course, challenges skating on synthetic ice when it first came into existence.

Technological advances and higher quality products have resolved many of these challenges. Some, in reality, can make you a better skater for overcoming them.

With that said, if you are in the market for a high-tech, high-quality, synthetic ice rink, contact our staff at KwikRink. We can answer any questions you may have. In the meantime, let’s review how to ice skate on current, high-quality synthetic ice.

Use your regular skates

Whether they are figure skates or hockey skates, you will not need any unusual type of skate for use on artificial ice. Skates no longer dull as quickly with the latest synthetic ice technology.

Enhanced molecular structure and glide technology are essential to reducing friction which dulls ice skate blades. KwikRink’s latest formula finds that ideal combination of glide while still providing for just the right grip, creating the perfect conditions for skating.

This enhanced molecular structure and glide technology helps to cut down on friction and the need to resharpen skates as often as is needed with older, traditional quality synthetic panels.

Wear your regular clothes

Current self-lubricating panels require no topical sprays and do not ooze slip agent. No topical sprays or slip agents means no oily mess to stain clothes, costumes or uniforms.

Old assembly methods also meant flooring could move and slide over time. This movement would create gaps and uneven surfaces. New dovetail interlocking designs mean panels stay in place both horizontally and vertically. An even surface means nothing to catch or trip on, except, maybe your toe pick.

So go ahead and practice your butterfly saves or the closing move to your paso doble, no need to take special precautions with your clothing.

Skip the hats, scarves, wool socks, mittens, and parka

Synthetic ice does not require cold temperatures. So you could be skating anywhere from a traditional arena setting to a small in-home rink, to an expansive outdoor rink in the middle of summer.

You won’t need to wait until it is cold enough outside for the ice to freeze. No more being forced to practice when it is so severe or snowy that you won’t survive more than 20 minutes before needing a break in the warming house.

Leave the broom in the closet

No, we haven’t switched to the topic of curling — that was one of last month’s articles. Skating on inferior quality synthetic panels generates a considerable amount of abrasions and shavings requiring frequent sweeping of the surface.

With the latest technology, the panels are now self-lubricating, and the surface remains more intact, which means the broom doesn’t have to come out of the closet as often.

Leave the cleaners in the cabinet

Besides the broom, you can leave the cleaning products in the closet too. Higher quality products are designed to withstand the elements. No lubricants or topical sprays means the surfaces do not attract dirt and grime as quickly as older materials. Both have the effect of the rink staying cleaner, longer, as well.

An occasional mopping (or use of a floor scrubber on larger, outdoor rinks) will still be required, but KwikRink’s synthetic panels are designed to take the punishment of any hockey or figure skating regimen. Indoors or out, these rinks are designed to last up to a decade or more.

Practice all your regular moves

So, you can wear your regular skates, and you can wear your regular clothes, and yes, you can practice all your regular moves. From long glides to hockey stops, and spins to jumps off your toe pick, you can practice all the skills on synthetic ice.

It used to be that backward skating and transitioning were slowed down and unnatural on synthetic ice, but that is no longer the case. KwikRink’s 5th generation formula provides for 95% of real ice speed and a glide of up to 50 ft on one stroke.

Be prepared to become a stronger skater

Although KwikRink’s 5th generation formula provides for 9