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How many children in Canada actually play ice hockey?

How many children in Canada actually play ice hockey?

Old Mar 1st 2009, 2:25 am
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Default How many children in Canada actually play ice hockey?

Hi.
Slightly obscure question maybe, but hockey is a big part of our lives, and I guess we've been assuming that it will be in Canada, and I'm wondering whether we're right?
Three of our children (boys aged 6 and 9, and girl aged 11) all play ice hockey, and have done for about two years. Our youngest (daughter aged 4) has been skating since she was two and a half - I'm not pretending she's great, but she can skate forwards and backwards and stop.
We avidly support our local ice hockey team (the Cardiff Devils), and dread the end of the hockey season.
I manage the under 10s team of our hockey club. We reguarly travel from Cardiff, in South Wales, to Guildford, Chelmsford, Peterborough and Gosport in England (around 3 to 4 hours drive) for junior matches.
We have friends who are professional hockey players from Canada, who are lovely, intelligent, caring gentlemen.
Our son went to a hockey camp in Ontario last year, and loved it.
We've been finding that in the UK, we are firmly in the minority. Most people don't understand our obsession with freezing in various ice rinks around the country, and don't much appreciate us sharing our interest.
Will we meet like-minded people in Ontario (our destination, all being well)? Will our children finally have friends who are interested in the matches they played at the weekend?
How many children in Canada actually play ice hockey?
And are we likely to be accepted into the local hockey playing community?
Grateful for your thoughts.
Leanne
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Old Mar 1st 2009, 2:30 am
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Default Re: How many children in Canada actually play ice hockey?

You're going to fit right in, and be about two years a head of most Brits that turn up

There are clubs and rinks everywhere - there are three rinks in the small town we live in, and every other child has a hockey net on the drive. Yes, it's big - yes, tons of kids play, and yes, you will easily be accepted into the hockey fraternity.

Good luck - and enjoy!
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Old Mar 1st 2009, 2:31 am
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Default Re: How many children in Canada actually play ice hockey?

Isn't it the national religion???
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Old Mar 1st 2009, 2:34 am
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Default Re: How many children in Canada actually play ice hockey?

Originally Posted by lcar View Post
Hi.
Slightly obscure question maybe, but hockey is a big part of our lives, and I guess we've been assuming that it will be in Canada, and I'm wondering whether we're right?
Three of our children (boys aged 6 and 9, and girl aged 11) all play ice hockey, and have done for about two years. Our youngest (daughter aged 4) has been skating since she was two and a half - I'm not pretending she's great, but she can skate forwards and backwards and stop.
We avidly support our local ice hockey team (the Cardiff Devils), and dread the end of the hockey season.
I manage the under 10s team of our hockey club. We reguarly travel from Cardiff, in South Wales, to Guildford, Chelmsford, Peterborough and Gosport in England (around 3 to 4 hours drive) for junior matches.
We have friends who are professional hockey players from Canada, who are lovely, intelligent, caring gentlemen.
Our son went to a hockey camp in Ontario last year, and loved it.
We've been finding that in the UK, we are firmly in the minority. Most people don't understand our obsession with freezing in various ice rinks around the country, and don't much appreciate us sharing our interest.
Will we meet like-minded people in Ontario (our destination, all being well)? Will our children finally have friends who are interested in the matches they played at the weekend?
How many children in Canada actually play ice hockey?
And are we likely to be accepted into the local hockey playing community?
Grateful for your thoughts.
Leanne
Pretty much every boy & a fair number of girls in both my kids' elementary school classes play. Our friend's son plays too.

It can get pretty expensive though & you'll get your fair share of pushy parents (like in most competitive sports & the such) but I'm sure your kids will have no problem being accepted but it really is "serious" stuff - unless they go in to recreational hockey - which is not so heated.

From the people I know here your "obsession" will be normal & therefore not an obsesion here!!

I heard that ringette (?spelling) is a good game for girls - plan to check that out at some point.

Personally I prefer just to watch - GO FLAMES & GO HITMEN!!!:-D
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Old Mar 1st 2009, 2:43 am
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Default Re: How many children in Canada actually play ice hockey?

It sounds much the same as here then - expensive. Fees for 3 children, plus weekly skating lessons, are no joke.
So many new pairs of skates, so little time...
And yes, we get our share of pushy parents too.
Does anyone know what typical monthly training fees might be for a standard atom or pee wee A or AA league team?
I know that kit is a lot less expensive (bought a full set of goalie kit last summer at Pro Hockey Life for less than half what we would pay in the UK) - though of course that is relative, and won't make a difference once we are living in CAD.
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Old Mar 1st 2009, 3:43 am
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Default Re: How many children in Canada actually play ice hockey?

Leanne


Hockey comes first out here for sure - parents register their kids for say Soccer and Hockey but the Soccer games will be missed for a hockey practice every time

gay\
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Old Mar 1st 2009, 3:47 am
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Default Re: How many children in Canada actually play ice hockey?

Originally Posted by lcar View Post
Hi.
Slightly obscure question maybe, but hockey is a big part of our lives, and I guess we've been assuming that it will be in Canada, and I'm wondering whether we're right?
Three of our children (boys aged 6 and 9, and girl aged 11) all play ice hockey, and have done for about two years. Our youngest (daughter aged 4) has been skating since she was two and a half - I'm not pretending she's great, but she can skate forwards and backwards and stop.
We avidly support our local ice hockey team (the Cardiff Devils), and dread the end of the hockey season.
I manage the under 10s team of our hockey club. We reguarly travel from Cardiff, in South Wales, to Guildford, Chelmsford, Peterborough and Gosport in England (around 3 to 4 hours drive) for junior matches.
We have friends who are professional hockey players from Canada, who are lovely, intelligent, caring gentlemen.
Our son went to a hockey camp in Ontario last year, and loved it.
We've been finding that in the UK, we are firmly in the minority. Most people don't understand our obsession with freezing in various ice rinks around the country, and don't much appreciate us sharing our interest.
Will we meet like-minded people in Ontario (our destination, all being well)? Will our children finally have friends who are interested in the matches they played at the weekend?
How many children in Canada actually play ice hockey?
And are we likely to be accepted into the local hockey playing community?
Grateful for your thoughts.
Leanne
I have lived in Canada all my life and I did not play hockey but I do love to watch hockey. GO FLAMES GO
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Old Mar 1st 2009, 3:52 am
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Default Re: How many children in Canada actually play ice hockey?

Most minor hockey associations run two streams: representative and recreational.

The representative stream is the more serious. Players are picked on merit and games are played to win. It is the stream that kids with ambitions to turn professional play in. You’ll encounter many pushy parents. It is good for kids who have potential as they will experience some of the highs and lows they can expect out of hockey, not least the pain of being cut from a team if they don’t make the grade.

Recreational hockey is a different thing altogether. JonboyE jnr. wanted to play hockey but he could hardly skate at all. No matter. The association take all applicants on a first come, first in, basis. After an assessment day they divide the boys up into equal strength teams. Leagues are set up with other local minor hockey associations. As each team starts off with equal strength squads the winner at the end of the season will be the team that has develops the most.

The other parents on jnr.’s team were fantastic to us. Once they realized we were fresh off the boat they made it their secondary mission for the season to:

a) teach us about hockey and
b) teach us how to be Canadian.

(I am happy to report that both seemed to involve drinking copious amounts of beer).

In the penultimate game of the season jnr. scored his first, and only, goal. The other parents roared with even more delirium than we did. We could not possibly have felt more welcome in our new home.

Parents in the recreational program are expected to volunteer some time for the team. I couldn’t help out on the ice so I got the job of organizing the association’s spring tournament. It was different way to meet lots of new people and understand more of how Canada works. Even better, throughout that season I learned more than you can imagine about the game of hockey, the tactics and subtleties, and the unwritten code that makes such a potentially violent game a joy to play and watch. I have been a dedicated fan of the Canucks ever since.

As for money, it is not that cheap. Even if you buy second hand equipment (and there are plenty of stores that sell this) you can expect to shell out at least $1,000 per child per season. If you can possibly afford it you really should try.
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Old Mar 1st 2009, 4:26 am
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Default Re: How many children in Canada actually play ice hockey?

http://www.arenamaps.com/arenas/Alberta_city.htm

I just did a quick count of the ice arenas in Calgary ... not good at counting whilst scrolling, but it was 109 or 110 rinks! That's even way more than I expected, for a city of 1 million+ people.

Every indoor arena is fully booked for hockey from about 6.00 am to late at night ... practically 7 days a week! They start skating when they can hardly stand up.

Here's a list for Ontario, which might be more relevant to you! http://www.arenamaps.com/arenas/Ontario.htm
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Old Mar 1st 2009, 4:53 am
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Default Re: How many children in Canada actually play ice hockey?

Originally Posted by Morwenna View Post
http://www.arenamaps.com/arenas/Alberta_city.htm

I just did a quick count of the ice arenas in Calgary ... not good at counting whilst scrolling, but it was 109 or 110 rinks! That's even way more than I expected, for a city of 1 million+ people.

Every indoor arena is fully booked for hockey from about 6.00 am to late at night ... practically 7 days a week! They start skating when they can hardly stand up.
There was a study done not that long ago and it determined Calgary was short at least ten indoor rinks.

http://www.albertahockey.com/story.aspx?c=28&id=229

Last edited by Steve_P; Mar 1st 2009 at 4:58 am. Reason: Found article about rink shortage in Calgary.
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Old Mar 1st 2009, 5:08 am
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Default Re: How many children in Canada actually play ice hockey?

We spent all afternoon ice skating - and my nephews had play-off games at 7am and 11am - the rinks are full and fighting for time slots. Lots of Canadians skate and play ice hockey.
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Old Mar 1st 2009, 5:23 am
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Default Re: How many children in Canada actually play ice hockey?

My kids played but I didn't like them doing so. I didn't like the violence. Really I don't see what's gained by teaching a thirteen year old girl that to hit another over the head with a piece of wood. I think boxing would have kept them equally fit while teaching them more useful life skills. otoh, since they mostly played at Moss Park (Toronto) and got there by streetcar and subway with their enormous foul smelling bags they did develop negotiating skills.
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Old Mar 1st 2009, 6:16 am
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Default Re: How many children in Canada actually play ice hockey?

Ballet, Piano, swimming on the local U team hopefully this summer and little league.....absoloutely NO hockey for mine. I am way too much a pacifist and hippy for that I'm afraid
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Old Mar 1st 2009, 1:57 pm
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Default Re: How many children in Canada actually play ice hockey?

In Canada its not "ice" hockey. Its hockey. The other kind is field hockey.

I don't actually care for it. I prefer to watch something like rugby where the players manage to crash into one another without it turning into a free for all!! Mind you, I only see it on television so maybe you have to be a professional before you learn to beat the pulp out of other players!!
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Old Mar 1st 2009, 2:51 pm
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Default Re: How many children in Canada actually play ice hockey?

Most people I speak to about it played to some degree growing up, even if it was not in a structured league as such.

One think I did find interesting in Ontario is some kids where skiers and some where hockey kids as there wasnt enough nights in the week. But I think thats where the rec or rep leagues taht Jonboye mentioned come in as the rec league gives the skiers a chance to learn the game.
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