Did you know that the word ‘hockey’ originates from the Middle French word ‘hoquet,’ which means a shepherd’s staffs. Does your little one jump with excitement when he sees a hockey stick? Does he love to play the sport and wants you to team up? If yes, then you should let your little one some facts on the sport to further his intrest in it. Don’t look anywhere else, because MomJunction brings to you the perfect compilation on some must-know Hockey facts.
Facts And Information About Hockey For Kids:
1. What Is Hockey?
Hockey is a team sport in which two teams play against each other, maneuvering a ball i.e., the hockey puck into the opponent’s goalpost by using a J-shaped hockey stick.
- Each hockey team consists of 11 players that comprise attackers, defenders, and a goalkeeper.
- Attackers try to hit, dribble, push, and pass the hockey puck in the opposite team’s goal to score a goal.
- Defenders make an effort to stop the opposing team from scoring a goal, by counter-hitting the ball with their sticks.
- The goalkeeper is the only one who can use his feet to stop or redirect the ball, besides using his stick.
- The team making the maximum goals, in the allotted time, wins the game. (1)
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2. When Did People Start Playing Hockey?
Records reveal that the sport has been around 1363, particularly when England’s Edward III put a ban on the sport and many other games in his royal declaration as he thought it is a waste of time. However, historical records reveal that several cultures that date far back about 4,000 years ago during the ancient Egyptian times, include records of playing games by using curved sticks. The first played indoor hockey was in 1875 in Montreal in Canada.
There are different kinds of hockey like field hockey, roller hockey, ice hockey, sledge hockey, and street hockey.
3. What Is A Hockey Puck?
A hockey puck is a vulcanized rubber disc which serves the same purpose as a ball does in ball-related games. Here, are some interesting facts about it.
- A hockey puck has a three-inch diameter, and people freeze it before playing so that it doesn’t bounce while playing.
- The first hockey puck was used in the 1800s and was made of frozen cow dung.
- Bobby Hull is famous in the history of hockey for shooting the fastest hockey puck at 118 miles per hour. (2)
4. What Was The Shape Of Hockey Sticks Earlier?
Hockey sticks would be straight before the 1960s. The credit of introducing curved hockey sticks goes to Stan Mikita, a Chicago Blackhawks Hall of Famer.
They are made of dense mulberry wood and fiberglass or aluminum.
5. What Is Special About Stanley Cup?
The Stanley Cup is widely famous for its commencement in 1893. Here are some facts about the tournament.
- Stanley Cup is named after the former Canadian Governor General, Lord Stanley of Preston, who earns the reputation of donating the trophy in 1893.
- The Stanley Cup was originally seven inches tall. However, today it is greater than 35 inches tall.
- Hockey fans in Detroit throw octopi on the ice when the Red Wings score during the playoffs. This tradition is since the Original Six era when the players took eight wins to win the Stanley Cup. So, fans consider one win for every octopus tentacle.
- The team that won the maximum Stanley Cups is the Montreal Canadiens.
- The Stanley Cup is played every year. The tournament was not held in 1919, due to Spanish flu epidemic, and 2005, due to a strike,
- The Stanley Cup has its share of craziness where it has been used as a cereal bowl, accidently left by a roadside, tossed in a swimming pool, and it also went missing on a 2010 flight from New Jersey to Vancouver. An Air Canada employee, later, recovered it.
- There are 12 names of women inscribed on the Stanley Cup. These 12 women were team executives. The first name is Marguerite Norris, the president of the Detroit Red Wings for its 1954-55 season victory. (3)
[ Read: How To Motivate Your Child In Sports ]
6. What Is Ice Hockey And How It Started?
Players play ice hockey on the ice wearing ice skates. Ice Hockey skates are different from figure skates. Ice skates have a long blade which extends through the end of the boot, and the player does not suffer from a toe pick.
- The origin of the game is unknown. However, it is believed that this was played by the people in the Northern European nations for centuries. Here are some amazing facts about ice hockey.
- Each team has six players at a time. The penalty can make an exception.
- The aim of an ice hockey game is to knock the hockey puck into the opponent’s net. The Goalie, goalkeeper, guards the net.
- Ice rinks in the North America are 200 feet long and 85 feet wide.
- The first Amateur Hockey Association came into being in 1888.
- Ice hockey bagged a place in the Winter Olympics in 1924.
- The first ever women’s hockey game took place in Ottawa, Canada in 1892.
- Zamboni is a machine used to keep the ice in the ice rink intact. Frank Zamboni invented this machine in 1949.
- J.G.A. Creighton from Canada wrote the rules of modern ice hockey.
- Players played the first game of ice hockey following the Creighton’s rules in Montreal, Canada in 1875.
- The Montreal Gazette published the first known rules of ice hockey in 1877. (4)
7. When Did NHL Come Into Existence?
- The National Hockey League i.e., NHL is active since 1917.
- NHL comprises five teams, namely Montreal Canadians, Ottawa Senators, Toronto Arenas, Montreal Wanderers, and Quebec Bulldogs. Only Toronto Arenas has artificial ice to play.
- Bobby Orr bagged the first NHL million dollar contract in 1971. The five-year term contract was of $ 200,000. (5)
8. What Is ‘The Original Six’?
A group of six hockey teams is famous as ‘The Original Six’, which includes Chicago Blackhawks, Montreal Canadians, Boston Bruins, Detroit Red Wings, Toronto Maple Leafs, and New York Rangers. Today, 30 hockey teams are known for being a part of NHL.
9. What Are The Unique Records In NHL?
- Darryl Sittler is famous for the record of the most points in a single game. He got 10 points in a hockey game, between his team Toronto Maple Leafs and the opponent Boston Bruins, on February 6, 1976, and the Leafs won. Initially, Maurice Rocket Richard had set the record with 8 points.
- Phil Esposito of Boston Bruins is the first NHL hockey player who has a record of 100 points in a season in 1969.
- Wayne Gretzky is famous for holding 61 NHL records, the maximum records by any hockey player to date.
- Craig MacTavish is the last player in NHL to play the game without a helmet. He got retired in 1997.
- Joe Malone holds the NHL record for most goals in a match on January 31, 1920. He scored seven times for Bulldogs while playing against the Toronto St. Pats.
- Edmonton Oilers’ Paul Coffey made an NHL record as the defensemen with 37 points in 1985 playoffs.
10. Who Was The First Woman To Play In NHL?
Manon Rheaume was the first woman player who played in the NHL. She is famous for being the goalie for Tampa Bay Lightning in 1992.
[ Read: Rugby Facts For Kids ]
Top 5 Hockey Safety Tips For Kids:
1. Adult Supervision:
Even though your little players sincerely follow all safety tips and rules of the match, accidents can happen. Your supervision and alertness can prove beneficial in an event of injury or any emergency.
2. Provide Your Kid All Essential Safety Equipment:
Make sure your kids play the game of hockey by using all necessary equipment to ensure their safety. Offer your child a full mask, foam-lined helmet, secure mouth guard, and chin strap, pads for shoulders, knees, elbows, shins, and hips, padded hockey pants, gloves, safety glasses, and an athletic supporter. Neck guards help safeguard your kid’s spine. Ensure your child wears a safety gear before the game starts. The safety equipment that you use should come from a certified institute. (6)
3. Make Sure All Equipment Fit Well:
Loose helmet or poorly fitted knee pads will fail to safeguard your kid’s body during the game. The helmet must fit snugly and accommodate your chin gently to protect it. So, check whether all equipment fit well before the match begins.
4. Enroll In A League Having Good Reputation:
Body checks and collisions account for high percentage of accidents and serious injuries. So, make sure you kid joins a reputed hockey league which doesn’t allow body checks and collisions.
5. Ensure Your Kids Train Under Supervision Of Expert Coach:
Make sure your kid’s coaches:
- Insist players do warm up and stretch before playing.
- Enforce all appropriate rules of the game.
- Encourage fair and safe play practices
- Don’t allow body checking and teach proper position to anticipate body checks.
- Teach your kid to avoid head contact with other players and boards since severe neck and head injuries may occur.
- A coach should never allow checking from behind the player.
[ Read: Football Facts For Kids ]
Top 11 Hockey Rules For Kids:
Here, we list some prominent hockey rules for kids:
- Each hockey team comprises 11 players and six substitutes.
- Each player possesses a hockey stick, and should use only one side i.e. flat side of the stick to hit the puck.
- The left hand should be on the right hand while dribbling or pushing the puck. Avoid holding the stick cross-handed.
- You need to flick or press the ball with hands apart and bent knees. Place both hands together on the upper end of the stick to hit the puck. Emphasis is on pushing not hitting.
- You cannot push the puck with your feet or hands.
- You can dribble the ball with the end of the stick or by rotating the stick on the ball, but your body should come in contact with the ball intentionally.
- You should keep the hockey stick below the shoulder height at all times, or you will bear a penalty.
- You should never use the sticks to hit others. Never swing it at them dangerously.
- Body checking and stick-checking are strictly prohibited.
- You can score a goal when you hit the ball into your opponent’s goal successfully within the 16-yard area.
- It leads to a foul or infringement when a player.
- Attempts to throw the hockey puck off another player intentionally.
- Hits the ball by using the rounded side of the stick.
- Intentionally uses a body part to stop or move the puck.
- Raises their stick above the waist height. (7)
Upper-level open hockey is only for 12-year and above kids, only if they can play safely with better skaters. (8)
We hope your kid is all geared up to play? Tell us how his experience as a player was in the comments below.
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