Nearly 40 players from Southern Alberta took part in Hockey Alberta’s U15 camp April 29-May 1 at the Strathmore Family Centre.
The camp, which is designed to introduce young athletes to the Team Alberta program, was the first of seven weekend sessions taking place in the province this spring.
“It was extremely good – I felt like we did a lot of really good things with the kids in two and half days,” said Troy Muspratt, Regional Development Coordinator for Hockey Alberta south. “It was an opportunity to introduce them to the Team Alberta program.
“It’s just another program that Hockey Alberta puts out there to try to develop the grassroots program in smaller areas around the province.”
Players took part in four on-ice sessions during the weekend, mixed in with some off-ice training and Hockey Alberta program information.
“Off the ice, we do some things like preparation for camp - we did a dryland session that worked purely with stickhandling and things that they can do at home,” said Muspratt. “On the ice, what we were trying to get across was personal skill development – a lot of station work, a lot of puck handling, a lot of skating. We worked on cycling the puck.
“In general, it’s mostly about individual skill development – we’re trying to offer a development program to develop talent.”
According to Muspratt, the constant message during the camp is that hockey is supposed to be fun. However, they do provide direction for elite athletes.
Hockey Alberta will now host the camp across the province in Grande Prairie, Leduc, Cochrane, Lac La Biche and Lethbridge.
According to Muspratt, Strathmore is an ideal place to host this type of camp.
“Their facility there is excellent to host an event like (this)” he said. “Having a dryland area, an ice surface and meeting rooms. It is an attraction because it is closer to the city – to try and get kids out from North Calgary and South Calgary.
“It is relatively affordably too.”