Ice hockey is an ice sports game in which the goal is to put the puck in the opposing team’s goal more times than the opposing team. The puck is passed from player to player on the ice surface using special hockey sticks. The team that scores the most goals in the opposing goal wins.
Hockey is often referred to as the sport of space speed. The puck flies across the rink, the hockey players charge, attack follows attack, then one goalie or another parries the strongest throws. And again – forward, to storm the opponent’s goal. The game is faster and faster, every 40 to 50 seconds is replaced. It is difficult to keep track of the puck, and the speeds are increasing, and there seems to be no limit to them.
The speed of the masters of hockey is enormous, and yet the most incomprehensible in this game is the quickness of the tactical thinking of hockey players, the ability to instantly understand constantly changing situations and make the best, most unexpected decision for the opponent.
Sharpness and strength are not rudeness, but integral, obligatory touches of a hockey player’s versatile physical training. The rules of the game are fair and have a sobering effect on the hottest heads. That is why, in his parting words before the match, the coach often warns: “Cruelty is within the rules.”
The thirst for battle, the thirst for victory excites, inspires, excites, and a surge of emotions spurs the most cold-blooded ones. And if it were not for the excitement, not the temperamental clash of characters, the confrontation of courage, will and pride, would not hockey seem a little bland without all this? Wouldn’t he have lost some of his emotional appeal? But all these skirmishes on the field are not settling scores. Hockey players are rivals, but not enemies. Respect for the enemy will never allow a hockey player to fight unfair.
Most boys dream of becoming hockey players and glorifying their country. Let’s take a look at the history of this fast and fair sport and find out what the secret is.
The word hockey itself comes from the Old French “hoquet”, meaning “shepherd’s crook with a hook”.
It is, alas, impossible to say exactly where hockey originated. The most popular opinion is that the history of hockey origin dates back to Canada. The second version says that hockey originated in Holland in the 16th century. But games that resemble hockey have existed since ancient times. The ancient Greeks had a similar game that was part of the Olympic Games. This is known for the famous wall of Themistocles in Athens. The wall is over 2,400 years old. On it was found an image of a group of people playing field hockey, or something similar.
This game was also played in England and France in the 16th -17th centuries. It is worth noting that Foggy Albion and the romantic capital of the world were also credited with the birthplace of the sport. In Holland, a sport similar to hockey was called “bandy”. In China, the first mention of hockey goes back five and a half centuries. Ancient Indians also boast a love of puck riding. Visit a museum in Mexico City to find out with a popular mural depicting athletes holding curved sticks and a ball on the ground.
The first hockey players attached cheese cutters to their feet, picked up shepherd’s staffs, and chased wooden balls across frozen water bodies. Pictures from that era also serve as proof of the Dutch roots of hockey, including the well-known painting by Romeik Huge, Portrait of a Hockey Player.
Yet most historians agree that the game was born in Canada more than a hundred years ago. According to one statement, the game began when, around 1867, English soldiers played what looked like modern ice hockey on the frozen surface of Ontario in the Kingston area. Kingston and Montreal claim the right to be considered the homeland of ice hockey. The first hockey rules were established in 1875 by students at the University of Montreal, and the first game was played there on March 3, 1875, at the Victoria Ice Rink.Both teams had 9 athletes. The rules of the game were a bizarre but highly promising mixture of field hockey rugby and American football. Instead of a puck, a field hockey ball cut in half was used. It was later replaced by a wooden disc and then a hard rubber disc. And just 10 years later, there was a hockey league in Kingston.
Of course, ancient hockey was only outwardly similar to modern hockey. The equipment was not the same, the hockey players did not wear helmets, the goalie mask had not yet been invented. There was not even a net at the goal. Hockey was slower, tactically monotonous. There were no devastating throws, no dizzying feints, no deft power fighting skills. The breakneck pace of athletes having to play their best in less than a minute was unthinkable back then. For a long time, teams consisted of nine players. It took a long time when a significant clause was introduced into the conditions of the game – a team can have no more than six hockey players on the court
In 1890, the Ontario Hockey League was formed with 10 teams. Three years later, the Governor of Canada, Lord Stanley, instituted the cup for the best team. To this day, the Stanley Cup is the most coveted for a hockey player. Until 1910, the cup was played between professionals and amateurs. But in 1917, the decision was made to assemble a league of all professional Canadian teams. This is how the National Hockey Line (NHL) was formedIn 1924, seven years after their founding, the first American team from Boston joined the Canadians.
At the beginning of the 20th century, ice hockey made its way to Europe and immediately gained immense popularity. Even though friendly matches between hockey players from Canada and hockey players from European countries (England, Germany, Belgium, Switzerland) ended, as a rule, with a “narrowed” score (in most cases, even with double digits), interest in hockey grew. In 1906, the International Ice Hockey League was organized by representatives of France, Belgium, the Czech Republic, and Switzerland. In 1910, the first championship of the Old World was played. The national teams of Great Britain (she became the winner), Germany, Belgium, and Switzerland participated in it. The very first world championship, which brought together the strongest teams of the Old and New Worlds in an official competition, was held in Antwerp (Belgium) in 1920 during the VII Summer Olympic Games. Naturally, the Canadians became its winners. And in 1924, at the Olympic tournament in Champony (France), later recognized as the second world championship, the advantage of the Canadians looked even more overwhelming than four years ago. By 1954, when the USSR national team made its debut in the world championship, the Canadians, who dominate world hockey, already had fifteen top titles (out of twenty possible) on their account. Twice Czechoslovakian hockey players have become world champions and once – the national teams of Great Britain, the USA, and Sweden. This was the balance of power in world hockey by 1954.
In the USSR, hockey became famous in the 30s, and in 1932 the first international amateur meeting was held in Moscow. The Moscow team met with the team of the German workers’ union “Fichte” and ended with the victory of the Muscovites with a score of 3: 0.
Unfortunately, hockey did not receive further support at the official level at that time, and only in 1946, the country’s first ice hockey championship was held.
Russian people from time immemorial loved to skate. As soon as the frost bridged the ice, they started daring games, arguing who is faster, stronger, bolder.
Folk games with a stick and a wooden ball were popular in Ancient Rus. The game of kubar was especially popular. Players chased the wooden ball (Kubar) across the ice with racks. Kubar had to be driven across the line in the middle of a frozen lake or, if they were playing with the drivers, get into the circle that each participant in the game drew for themselves.
Over time, the ball was replaced with a cast-iron pellet. This invention was made as a precaution. Kubar shot upward when hitting and inflicted injuries on the players (of course, then, of course, no protective equipment was released). The bullet always glided only on the ice. In different regions, this game had different names: whirligig, cauldron, hockey sticks, hockey sticks.
When skates began to appear (at first they were made of wood, bone, copper), the games became even more similar to modern hockey. In the nineties of the last century, members of the Petersburg Sports Amateurs circle created and formalized the rules of the game of hockey, and in 1907 the Petersburg League of Hockey Players was created. And hockey went on a trip around the country: Moscow, Tver, Vladivostok, Arkhangelsk, Novgorod, Pavlovsky Posad, Kharkov, Saratov.
Domestic ice hockey dates back to February 1932, when the German Fichte team arrived in the USSR for joint training sessions and friendly matches with Moscow athletes. The CDKA team, formed based on bandy players, held the first international meeting in our country. To the surprise of many, they won the match 3-0. Then the Moscow team beat the German athletes. Even then it became clear that our athletes can quickly master the complex technique of playing ice hockey, since the level of their special training, received in Russian hockey, and the speed of movement on skates were quite high.
But hockey received real recognition in our country only after the Great Patriotic War, when the rules of the game were published and the first training camps for coaches and referees were held, the necessary equipment was made and the calendar of the USSR championship in hockey was drawn up.
What is hockey
Hockey is a team sports game that takes place at a high pace and is full of sharp, unexpected, rapidly changing situations. The players, moving on the ice on skates, try to throw the puck into the opponent’s goal with their clubs and protect their goal from defeat.
Hockey is played on an ice rink measuring 61×30 m, rectangular in shape, with rounded corners with a radius of 8.5 m. The entire rink is fenced with wooden or plastic boards 122 cm high. The field is divided into zones. Wide blue lines drawn under the ice across the site at a distance of 18 m from its edges highlight the defense and attack areas. The defense zone is the one where the gates of your team are, the attack zone is with the gates of the enemy. Between the blue lines in the middle zone. The entire field is still halved by a red centerline. The gate is small; height – 122 cm, width – 183 cm. They are made of metal pipes with a diameter of 5 cm and have a metal mesh at the back.
The game lasts 60 minutes. “Pure time” (3 periods of 20 minutes with breaks of 10 minutes between periods). The high tempo of the modern game and the frequent change of game situations create a great burden, therefore, during the game, players are usually replaced after 40 – 45 seconds. But the replacement during the game is made strictly in places, i.e. center forward instead of center, right back instead of right. In addition to the goalkeeper, no more than 5 players directly participate in the game: right and left defenders, right-wingers, center and left-wingers. This is one shift, that is, the players who are currently fighting. Typically, a team has four pairs of defenders and four triples of attackers, or, in other words, four shifts, fives. The International Ice Hockey Federation allows up to 22 players per team to play in one match.
The hockey team consists of the following roles:
Defender. The defender has to be able to do a lot. He runs with ease and quickly with his back forward, makes sharp turns, quickly changes direction, and is very stable on skates.
Extreme striker. The winger, who more often than other players has to make his way to the goal alone, is constantly faced with an open challenge to a violent clash. Therefore, he must be strong physically and at the same time very dexterous. It is not always wise to launch a frontal attack.
Central striker. He undoubtedly belongs to the main role in modern hockey. Usually the most talented hockey player, who understands all the difficult situations of the game, is put in this place. The central striker very often finds himself in a difficult position – after all, he plays in the most dangerous part of the field for the opponent, it is he who is most often at the forefront of the attack, and therefore the success of the central forward’s actions is primarily determined by his tactical thinking and individual technical skill.
Goalkeeper. The goalkeeper has a special role. They say that a reliable goalkeeper is half the victory. If he plays poorly, no amount of defense will save the team from defeat. The goalkeeper has heavier and more durable protective ammunition, he has a wide stick, and he stands on low skates with wide runners. A stick in one hand and a special glove on the other for catching the puck.
It seems to people who are not experienced in the game that everything is allowed in hockey. Not at all. It is allowed to push the opponent with the puck, chest, shoulder or hip. You cannot make more than two steps towards him and push him aboard. It is forbidden to put the stick, knee or skates forward, push the opponent with your hands. You can only play with the body against the hockey player who owns the puck, and his partners can be blocked the way, and no more. A hockey player must not play with a broken stick, lie down deliberately on the puck, use the stick below shoulder level, hit the skates with it, throw the stick to interfere with the opponent
Penalties in hockey seem to be for everything. Starting from delaying the opponent with a stick and ending with deliberate damage. Since everyone wants an honest victory, in modern hockey, penalties are mainly for occasional flaws.
How to become a hockey player.
Winning the Stanley Cup. Become a famous hockey player. To achieve something, you need to go to this sport from childhood. It seems nothing complicated, but no. To become a successful hockey player, you need to fully invest and complete a training course. First, you need to know and understand the technique of the game.
The game of hockey is distinguished by a wide variety of techniques used. The techniques used in hockey can be roughly divided into several groups; skating, stick and puck possession, feints, puck selection (power wrestling, club selection).
For a hockey player, excellent ice skating means more than just the ability to move quickly from one place of the hockey field to another. A hockey player must be able to skate so naturally and with such ease that he doesn’t have to think about how to get skates off the ice and how to put them on the ice. A hockey player’s mind should be focused on the stick and puck, positioning and attack development.
Stick and puck control
Ice skating is the foundation of hockey, but puck control is the second most important component of hockey prowess. The stands are watching exactly the player who owns the puck. The combination of skating skills with puck skills is one of the factors that make hockey a truly incomparable game, in which only a great master can succeed. A hockey player must be able to quickly and easily move on skates, feel the puck on the stick, watch out for an opponent player who is ready to join him in single combat, approaching him at a speed close to 60 km / h. The ease and efficiency of all his actions largely depends on the ability of a hockey player to hold the stick correctly and to master it perfectly.
Puck Feints and Stops
Feints are used in attack and defense in order to beat the opponent by deceiving them. Feints can be done with or without a puck, standing still and moving. Feints can be feet, hockey stick, torso, head nod. They can be matched – stick and torso, torso and stick, head nod and torso movement, etc.
Shoulder turns, weight transfer, head movement, and club feints are the components of deceiving technique that are all manifestations of hockey ingenuity.
Power fighting techniques and puck selection
These techniques are used against the player in possession of the puck in order to master it. There are two most common techniques of power play with the torso: push by the opponent with the shoulder and push by the hip The first is used in cases when the defender rolls back into his zone with his back forward or moves next to the opponent. Aiming with his shoulder at the puck leader’s chest, the player throws his body weight with all his might on the opponent, and the main driving force is created by pushing with his back foot.
Now let’s remember the world-famous names of hockey legends. There are many pupils of Russian clubs among the best in world hockey. Let’s remember the most famous ones.
This striker has the largest collection of trophies in the history of world hockey. He has played more than 2,000 games in his career while scoring 850 goals. Gordie Howe became the Stanley Cup winner, world, European and Olympic champion. Has been named the NHL’s Top Scorer and Most Valuable Player of the season on several occasions. In matches, he preferred a tough and attacking style. There is a special concept – “Gordie Howe’s hat-trick”;
2. Boris Mikhailov
Boris Mikhailov spent almost his entire career at CSKA Moscow. In the USSR championships, he played 572 matches and scored 426 goals (the highest achievement in the history of the championships of the Soviet Union), and made 224 assists, also gaining a record 652 points. 11-time champion of the USSR. Two-time Olympic champion, 8-time world champion. For a long time, Mikhailov was the captain of the USSR national team. In total, he played 120 matches at the World Championships and Winter Olympics and scored 109 goals.
3. Anders Berje Salming
Anders has dedicated 23 years to a hockey career. He has played in many famous Swedish clubs and has been successful. However, he gained fame thanks to his play in the team of the Toronto Maple Leafs club. Anders boasts that he is the only European ice hockey player to play 1,000 NHL games.
4. Valery Kharlamov
A unique player whose life was tragically cut short in 1981. Valery Kharlamov has repeatedly become the champion of Europe and the world as part of the national team. He is also the owner of the Olympic Games gold medals. The player was often recognized as the best striker. For his achievements, Kharlamov was included in the NHL Hall of Fame;
5. Wayne Gretzky
Known as The Great One, Wen Douglas Gretzky is a legendary Canadian ice hockey player. Top scorer with more than 10 Art Ross Trophy awards. During his career, he has scored almost 900 goals. The winner of the Stanley Cup.
We did our best to tell you the story of this harsh sport in as much detail as possible, but without further ado. We hope you found it interesting. Maybe we were even able to inspire someone to a new hobby. Perhaps some of you or your loved ones will hold the Stanley Cup in their hands in the future. Most importantly, don’t give up. And if hockey is interesting for you only for viewing, then our glass is definitely for you.