NO MORE BODY CONTACT IN PEEWEE HOCKEY

Jason Gregor
May 07 2013 11:45PM

A source told me tomorrow afternoon Hockey Alberta will announce that beginning next season there will be no more checking in peewee.

The email I received said, "Effective immediately checking will be removed from peewee hockey."

This doesn't come as a major surprise. They have been talking about this for a few years, and they have done studies comparing the amount of injuries in Alberta to Quebec where they don't allow checking until Bantam.

I know many kids have quit hockey when they reach peewee because they don't like checking, so this will likely keep more kids playing the game. That is great.

A concern will be that 13 year olds, first year bantam, are stronger and faster than first year peewees, so the potential might be higher with kids learning to check at 13 compared to 11.

I believe the biggest change has to come from coaching. I believe more amateur coaches need to be given better instructions so they can be better coaches. There needs to be a better formula so that volunteer coaches can instruct kids better on how to give and receive a check.

If more coaches are given better instructional tools, they can pass on that knowledge to their players. It benefits everyone.

I understand Hockey Alberta's decision to remove checking from peewee, but I'm not sure it will solve the injury problems. I think it might only delay them a couple of years.

Do you agree with this decision? Do you have kids who were afraid to play? As a coach do you feel you get enough instruction to teach proper checking techniques?

REMINDER...

We are ten days away from a great night. Jason Strudwick and Yukon Jack had some pretty damn impressive karaoke performances last night during the Oil Kings game. If that was any indication of how much fun our 12 finalists and  special "celebrity" guests will  have next Friday I'm jacked. May 17th, at On The Rocks is our King/Queen of Karaoke challenge.

Tickets are $25/each with 100% of the proceeds going to charity. And with your $25 ticket you get $50 in gift certificates from On The Rocks and Oodle Noodle. So you make money by supporting the cause. You can buy your tickets here. They will be sold out by next week.

RECENTLY BY JASON GREGOR

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One of Canada's most versatile sports personalities. Jason hosts The Jason Gregor Show, weekdays from 2 to 6 p.m., on TSN 1260, and he writes a column every Monday in the Edmonton Journal. You can follow him on Twitter at twitter.com/JasonGregor
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#151 Thinker
May 08 2013, 04:28PM
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It's stupid to ban hitting. I played minor hockey about 3 years ago, and I definitely feel that I was safer after having started hitting at a younger age. First of all the effects of concussions is overstated, as your average joe doesn't take the same number of head blows as a pro football player. And if we are scared of concussions, why wait until the kids are big and fast enough to cause damage intentionally. Bantam is the biggest size descrepency, as half the kids have hit puberty, and therefore it is the most dangerous. All the extra two years will accomplish is give the kids more time to get accustomed to skaing with their head down, and playing recklessly. At the younger levels, the big hits are the accidental collisions away from the puck, not those tied to hitting directly. I liken the situation to just giving a sixteen year old their liscence with having had a learners. Its stupid. The injuries in bantam will skyrocket, as the kid are thrown into the fire.

Plus there is a no hit league.

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#152 Quicksilver ballet
May 08 2013, 04:39PM
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Ducey wrote:

Where does all this money go to?

It goes for icetime, uniforms, insurance, etc. And its $600 a year.

You think Hockey Alberta is getting rid of hitting so that the City of Edmonton can make more money selling ice?

Hockey Alberta is getting rid of hitting so PetroCan can make more on fuel?

Why don't you come up with a theory that aliens are controlling it. It would make more sense.

I just mentioned a possible motive for a change like this, and I think it's valid. Ask yourself, how much money is involved when it comes to kids playing 2/3 more years? It was you who waved the flag and quit/resorted to your whole Alien theory. If that's all you have to counter my argument, give me $20.00 i'll give you 2 more attempts to redeem yourself.

Be better Ducey, that effort was pitiful.

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#153 Romulus' Apotheosis
May 08 2013, 04:44PM
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@Tikkanese

You are basically saying in one case the things you covet can be developed absent keeping score but in another they can't.

However, you've offered nothing other than your own sense that the drive to excel, work together and learn dies on the vine in sports. Magically apparently.

Except that we've already run the test models.

This isn't an abstract question.

Those models that employ a skills development orientation produce exceptional results, competitive results down the line.

There is no evidence athletes emerge less competitive on this model.

Read about it. You seem to know nothing about the actual arguments being used here...

http://www.canadasoccer.com/wellness-to-world-cup-s14682

http://www.thestar.com/sports/soccer/2013/02/16/ontario_youth_soccer_to_stop_keeping_score_standings.html

http://www.thestar.com/sports/soccer/2013/02/27/canadas_david_edgar_applaud_noscore_soccer_for_kids.html

What's happening here... despite claims to the contrary is that people are starting to take youth athletic development much more seriously.

This isn't some hands-off, never get dirty model. This is a laboratory for building winners. These people aren't concerned mothers. They are trying to gain a competitive edge.

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#154 tileguy
May 08 2013, 05:04PM
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Cody anderson wrote:

I just heard they are removing keeping score in soccer up until they are 12 to avoid hurting kids feelings.

I would be interested in taking a poll to see how many people that are anti contact are also anti spanking and anti score keeping.

Were you spanked as a child? do you spank your children? Survival of the fittest, now eat your nails and get out there and drive somebody into the boards.

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#155 Ducey
May 08 2013, 05:20PM
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Quicksilver ballet wrote:

I just mentioned a possible motive for a change like this, and I think it's valid. Ask yourself, how much money is involved when it comes to kids playing 2/3 more years? It was you who waved the flag and quit/resorted to your whole Alien theory. If that's all you have to counter my argument, give me $20.00 i'll give you 2 more attempts to redeem yourself.

Be better Ducey, that effort was pitiful.

"possible motive"??

When someone tells you why they are doing something (in this case for safety) and then you don't believe them because of a "possible motive" that has no evidentiary basis and makes absolutely no sense, then you are an idiot - kind of like the people who advance the alien theories.

Was that simple enough for you?

Go back to dreaming about Weber for Omark.

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#156 Tikkanese
May 08 2013, 05:20PM
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Article 1 only talks about LTPD based on biological age. I said in an earlier post that it's a good solution to the actual topic of this article we're going off topic on.

Article 2 does not prove or explain anything. It says there's some magical study done somewhere but doesn't explain or show any of this study. It does say there is a problem with some coaches and coaching styles. I'm not disputing that, but the fixes to that can also be done while keeping scores. It also says that the players, coaches and parents are all going to still keep score for themselves. This article does have this quote “Are we doing a disservice to our children by not allowing them the experience of losing? I don’t know the answer to that.” Shouldn't that be proven in this magical evidence?

Article 3 same as above.

All taking scoring out does is instantly change coaching strategies of poorly in the first place trained coaches. Yes that bad coaching needs to be changed but that can all be done without the drastic measure of taking scoring out. It's a quick solution that isn't necessary and may be doing more harm than good in the long run.

I've proven keeping scores has tangible goals and promotes all of those good things we want kids learning. You've proven taking scoring away might be doing a disservice by not allowing them the experience of losing. All of the other changes these articles are talking about should be done anyways and keeping score doesn't affect those changes one way or the other.

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#157 TigerUnderGlass
May 08 2013, 05:27PM
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Isn't the topic of discussion here hitting in pee wee? Why are people still talking about about eliminating scores?

"I know, I don't have a really valid reason to keep hitting around for little kids, so I'll quickly change the topic to something almost entirely unrelated."

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#158 Cody anderson
May 08 2013, 05:30PM
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@Romulus' Apotheosis

There is public skating, playing pass in the driveway, stickhandling drills and all of those kinds of things to develop children's skills.

I would not put my kid in a sport that did not keep score, because in my opinion it is no longer a sport.

That being said, I first and foremost want to make sure my children have fun playing sports.

I reward good actions or hard work, not the result. To my kids, and most I have seen the result is what motivates them. They will go to the net to score a goal not because that is a good place to be later on if you happen to make it to a competitve level.

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#159 Cody anderson
May 08 2013, 05:31PM
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@TigerUnderGlass

Sorry bud, I found this equally pathetic and along the same lines. Both in my opinion are a knee jerk reaction from over protective parents.

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#160 TigerUnderGlass
May 08 2013, 05:51PM
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Cody anderson wrote:

Sorry bud, I found this equally pathetic and along the same lines. Both in my opinion are a knee jerk reaction from over protective parents.

Except that you have the rationale entirely wrong for eliminating scores.

Removing hitting is about protecting children, eliminating scores is about allowing the kids to focus on developing their skills and teamwork without the distraction of keeping score for a few years. It has nothing to do with "hurt feelings". Kind of like how sushi chef trainees don't get to even touch fish for the first three years of their training. The idea that it's done to protect feelings is an invention of those who disagree.

In other words - one is only about safety, the other is a difference of opinion about how to teach kids a sport.

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#161 Romulus' Apotheosis
May 08 2013, 05:52PM
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@Tikkanese

you don't read very carefully apparently.

1. if you agree with their plans, including no scorekeeping for younger kids, what is your objection?

2/3 you seemed to know so little about it, I figured I should start you out slow.

First. there is a lot of empirical evidence. As you seem to elide it, I'll state it again:

In every single place this model has been adapted all your doomsday scenarios are absent.

As far as studies on LTPD, here is some literature:

http://www.ajol.info/index.php/sasma/article/view/70176/58365

http://www.nsca-lift.org/ContentTemplates/PublicationArticleDetail.aspx?id=2147485991

http://hollandiasoccer.com/LinkClick.aspx?link=Abridged+LTPD.PDF&tabid=116&mid=535

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#162 Romulus' Apotheosis
May 08 2013, 05:55PM
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TigerUnderGlass wrote:

Except that you have the rationale entirely wrong for eliminating scores.

Removing hitting is about protecting children, eliminating scores is about allowing the kids to focus on developing their skills and teamwork without the distraction of keeping score for a few years. It has nothing to do with "hurt feelings". Kind of like how sushi chef trainees don't get to even touch fish for the first three years of their training. The idea that it's done to protect feelings is an invention of those who disagree.

In other words - one is only about safety, the other is a difference of opinion about how to teach kids a sport.

That's completely right.

There are definitely helicopter parents out there supporting both these things... but that's not the reasoning behind either of them and they are both quite different things.

It is only when we place these debates into the cultural panic blender that we get these kind of side-shows... which I need to stop encouraging by arguing against...

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#163 @Oilanderp
May 08 2013, 07:58PM
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Go play mockey!

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#164 Reagan
May 08 2013, 08:01PM
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Best news! My starts Peewee next year!

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#165 Tayranchula
May 08 2013, 08:04PM
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Im not 100% in favour with this for this one and only reason.

When I played peewee thats when we learned how to protect ourselves from being hit. How to absorb the check etc. etc.. When I moved up to the next level I was very small (never hit puberty) and I was playing agianst kids that had already outweighed me by 30 pounds and had a couple inches. The only reason I wasnt sent in to the stand from a hit was learning how to take and give hits with kids the same size and the same maturity level as me.

I think there are going to be alot more injuries in older age groups because of this. The only way to get rid of injuries is to get rid of hitting which I dont like.

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#166 Quicksilver ballet
May 08 2013, 08:51PM
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@Ducey

You believe in your rubbish, but don't write off mine so quick. This is ALL about money. Hockey Alberta just wants kids to play into their mid teens, hang onto the so-called dream for a few more yrs....... so parents like yourself can "Show dem the Money! for another 3 or 4 yrs.

On the other hand, I do feel for people such as yourself. Kids whom these rules weren't in place for. Hockey Alberta wasn't there for you and the brain injury you obviously did suffer. Were you even an Albertan 10 yrs ago, or are you another one of those nomads that go where the jobs are.....Quebecian drywaller perhaps?

Be it known to all of mankind, that from this day forward, the term Quebecian is now the pride of Alex Trebeks geographical terms.

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#167 Gary Galante
May 08 2013, 10:53PM
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@Jason Gregor

"A concern will be that 13 year olds, first year bantam, are stronger and faster than first year peewees, so the potential might be higher with kids learning to check at 13 compared to 11.

I believe the biggest change has to come from coaching. I believe more amateur coaches need to be given better instructions so they can be better coaches. There needs to be a better formula so that volunteer coaches can instruct kids better on how to give and receive a check.....

I understand Hockey Alberta's decision to remove checking from peewee, but I'm not sure it will solve the injury problems. I think it might only delay them a couple of years."

I can't believe a journalist does not do their research before posting absolute garbage. Here's some light reading for you Jason:

http://www.cps.ca/documents/position/bodychecking-ice-hockey

Excerpts listed below:

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#168 Gary Galante
May 08 2013, 11:05PM
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"Bodychecking is the predominant mechanism of injury among youth hockey players at all levels of competition where it is permitted, accounting for 45% to 86% of injuries.[8][16]-[18] Several published studies, including two recent systematic reviews, reported on risk factors for injury (including bodychecking) in youth hockey.[19][20] Emery and colleagues conducted a systematic review of 24 studies and a meta-analysis including only studies which examined policy allowing bodychecking as a risk factor for injury. Policy allowing bodychecking was found to be a risk factor for all hockey injuries, with a summary incidence rate ratio (IRR) of 2.45 (95% CI 1.7 to 3.6). Furthermore, policy allowing bodychecking was found to be a risk factor for concussion, with a summary OR of 1.71 (95% CI 1.2 to 2.44). These data confirm that bodychecking increases the risk of all injuries and the risk of concussion specifically.[20] Nine of ten studies examining policy allowing bodychecking provided evidence to support a greater risk in bodychecking leagues.[20] The second systematic review found the RR of injury associated with policy allowing bodychecking ranged from 0.6 to 39.8; all but one of these studies found an increased risk of injuries associated with body checking.[19]"

Summary: Allowing body checking at ANY LEVEL of youth hockey increases risk for concussion. So skill level or age seem to be relatively insignificant in studies, and the mere presence of a policy of no body checking is currently the most effective proven way of reducing injury.

"Since the publication of these systematic reviews there have been five additional studies. A Canadian prospective cohort study compared injury rates between peewee ice hockey players in a league where bodychecking is permitted at age 11 years (Alberta) versus players in a league where bodychecking is not permitted until age 13 (Quebec).[21] During the 2007/2008 season, a validated injury surveillance system was used to capture all injuries requiring medical attention and/or time loss from hockey (ie, time between injury and return to play) in 2154 players. There was a threefold increased risk of all game-related injuries (IRR =3.26 [95% CI; 2.31 to 4.60]) and of injury resulting in >7 days time lost from sport (IRR=3.30 [95% CI; 1.77 to 6.17]) in 11- to 12- year-old peewee players from Alberta when compared with Quebec. There was also an almost fourfold increased risk of game-related concussion (IRR=3.88 [95% CI; 1.91 to 7.89]) in Alberta peewee players.[21] Further evidence was reported in a five-year cohort study (2002 to 2007) including all age groups, which demonstrated that injury risk increases 3.75 times (IRR=3.75 [95% CI; 1.51 to 9.74]) in leagues that allow bodychecking compared with those that do not.[22]"

Summary: Direct evidence in Alberta that we can protect peewee players better. I recently heard on CBC, through a psychologist who has been studying concussions in hockey, that there is roughly a 12% concussion rate in peewee hockey. That is not an insignificant proportion, and a 3-4 fold reduction by removing body checking is obviously a smart move, at least one that you can partly agree with.

"A second prospective cohort study by Emery et al examined whether the introduction of bodychecking at 11 years of age (Alberta) or 13 years of age (Quebec) affected injury rates in later years (at 13 to 14 years of age).[23] During the 2008/09 season, the same injury surveillance system cited above was used to study 1971 bantam players (13- to 14-year-olds). There was NO REDUCTION in game-related injury risk (all injuries) for this age group (IRR=0.85 [95% CI 0.63 to 1.16]), of concussion specifically (IRR=0.84 [95% CI 0.48 to 1.48]), or of concussions resulting in >10 days time lost from sport (IRR=0.6 [95% CI 0.26 to 1.41]) in the Alberta league, compared with Quebec. IN FACT, THE CONCUSSION RATE FOUND IN ALBERTA PEEWEE PLAYERS WAS HIGHER THAN IN THE BANTAM PLAYERS IN EITHER PROVINCE.[22][23]"

Sum: Evidence that quite frankly disproves your belief that inevitable injuries will only be delayed. The rate of concussions in peewee hockey in Alberta can be reduced substantially and in this age group it is apparent there is the most to gain by a no body checking policy. Effects of a concussion also seem to be most significant in the developing brain, so there is also a theoretical argument to attempt to delay brain injury from body checking.

"If more coaches are given better instructional tools, they can pass on that knowledge to their players. It benefits everyone."

I absolutely agree with you in principle. This is probably the most sense you make. But there is no evidence from studies that this makes a difference in outcomes in the more vulnerable younger players, and certainly nowhere near the evidence out there that supports an outright ban on body checking in earlier age groups.

Hockey Alberta got it right, and idiotic articles like this that cast doubt on a calculated and well-thought out decision only serve to misinform individuals as uneducated as yourself, and question the obvious merit in this brave but easy decision.

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#169 Gary Galante
May 08 2013, 11:17PM
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One last point to those who think that body checking and hockey are inseparable (and this from a hockey fan) - If 12/100, or 1/8 of all peewee players in Alberta are suffering concussions during game play, this represents a significant burden to Albertans. So forget the "helicopter parent" taunts, this is a health issue that we must understand and advocate better. A concussion means the child must take complete mental rest until the symptoms have resolved. In some cases, significant symptoms last months or longer, and in the last year alone, I have seen many adolescents who have suffered terribly for this length of time, unable to last an hour in class without nausea, severe headaches, or unable to walk at times due to dizziness, or unable to concentrate on reading. Concussions often are disruptive to families, especially ones where parents cannot afford to take time away from work to look after their children.

And let me ask those who disagree with this policy a couple more questions to put this into perspective. Why does removing checking from peewee hockey make competitive hockey at a later age less enjoyable? And what percentage of peewee players end up playing competitive hockey as adults?

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#170 madjam
May 09 2013, 06:44AM
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When you watch a teammate die after being taught to spear an opponent as in football , you get a better perspective at how dangerous hits to the head are .Yes , eventually most are taught dirty tactics down the line somewhere , without being responsible for those hits and action /repercushions . What kid even at high school level does not try to please the coaches and inadvertently endanger themselves and the opponents ? Your responsible for your kids safety , as are the coaches , until such time as they are mature enough to make those educated decisions on their own . The kids need to be taught to be more responsible for their actions .

How to get back at an opponent(dirty tactics ) is far to prevalent in most sports -pressing the envelop . Taught and developed far to frequently . I want to see your kids enjoy the sport of hockey safely not be a victim of the cult of violence that infests the sport .

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#171 Reagan
May 09 2013, 07:01AM
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@Quicksilver ballet

What the hell are talking about? Living the dream for a little longer. I guess there isn't such a thing as good clean fun. Non contact high scoring sport is just as exciting as hitting in hockey. Posing this question is hitting exciting? Yes it is for those that carry the intelligence to hit properly, and learn properly to take a hit. Do you honestly believe a 11-12 year old child bears the intelligence to male those decisions and a split seconds notice? Most adults don't, unless they have been coached or trained for several years. Funny thing is that my child currently is moving from atom a to peewee next year and there are many kids out there that can't control the puck without looking down, and never mind dishing out or taking a open ice hit. Some kids are decent skaters and have watched them gingerly fight for a puck in the corner, barely keeping their balance, and not you send in a hit or two? I see nothing wrong with delaying hitting for a few more years, as it gives the stronger and weaker to develop their skills to maybe wanting to continue further. But to say this is a money grab, and is ridiculous!

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#172 Zamboni Driver
May 09 2013, 08:28AM
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I am absolutely certain those worrying about the "P*ssification" of hockey (or whatever Cherry nonsense you want to spew) DO NOT HAVE KIDS.

Do this geniuses.

Remove the word "hockey player" from your vocabulary.

Try this one instead.

Children

These are 11 year old CHILDREN

Really think they NEED body contact being taught mostly by Dads who were too dumb not to stare longer at their shoes when they asked for more volunteer coaches?!

They're 11 year olds. Not hockey players.

Kids.

Get over yourselves.

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#173 mayorblaine
May 09 2013, 08:51AM
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is the instigator penalty discussion still a thing?

consider my mind boggled.

@Quick - that's an awful big spoon you have there. me thinks you like to stir a bit too much. interesting but off.

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