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IFYHA is hosting the first sled hockey event November 10th and possibly the 11th at the Joe Marmo/Wayne Lehto Ice Arena. The event is free and is hosted in conjuction with USA Hockey, the City of Idaho Falls, IFYHA, and the Speech and Language Clinic. The event is for ages youth to adult and includes those with cerebral palsy, amputations, paraplegia, spina bifda, club feet, hip and knee problems, MS, and more. Sleds and gear will be provided. Please click on the link for the registration form, complete the form, and email to firstname.lastname@example.org. Upon receipt and scheduling, we will contact all involved for times of the event. Registration link: IFYHA Sled Hockey Registration. For more information or questions about sled hockey contact Mike Leavitt at 208-521-6986 or e-mail at email@example.com
Sled hockey is an exciting alternative sport that uses the rules of hockey. Sled hockey began in the early 1960′s in Stockholm Sweden. It moved to the United States in 1989 and Colorado joined those ranks in 1995. Sled Hockey has been a Paralympic sport since 1994, with Team USA earning the Gold medal in 2002 and the Bronze medal in 2006.
Players use the same equipment as in “stand-up” hockey with the exception of the skates. Instead, they use a sled which consists of a cushioned seat mounted on a tubular sled that has skate blades and a center pivot underneath. The player sits four inches above the ice and is held into the sled with Velcro straps. Two shortened hockey sticks are used to handle the puck as well as propel the player across the ice. If a player is unable to move across the ice then a “pusher”, someone to help with the movement of the sled, may be used for assistance.
The wonderful thing about sled hockey is that anyone can play. Both males and females play this sport. It is a sport that totally integrates players with mobility limitations, amputees, and able-bodied people with knee, leg, or hip injuries, Spina Bifida, Cerebral Palsy, Multiple Sclerosis, and spinal injuries that would limit their participation in standard hockey. Sled hockey is one of the many activities which can provide players the opportunity to improve endurance, coordination, strength, social skills and more. Whether at a competitive level or recreational level of play, sled hockey can aid in improving players attention span, self-confidence, and decision making skills. The players gain a sense of belonging and form lasting friendships with which they have something in common. It also teaches them to work with others in a team environment, which is a skill that will aid them throughout life in school, and work!
Most parent will ask “Is sled hockey too physical for my child with a disability?”
Coaches teach players to avoid sled to sled collisions, and are taught sportsmanship and respect for players, and coaches. However, some physicality is involved as is in any hockey game. All players are required to wear USA Hockey approved safety gear, including helmets. We make every effort to make adaptations to equipment to maximize safety, even outriggers on the sleds to prevent tipping during early learning.
How old is too old for sled hockey?
There’s no age limit for sled.
So just what are the benefits of sled hockey?
Sled hockey gives a person with mobility disabilities the chance to develop strong core muscles, improve balance, improve upper body strength, as well as improve all the physical abilities they do have. Staying physically active leads to better health and avoiding obesity.
Do I have to have a disability to do sled skating/ sled hockey?
We won’t discriminate if you don’t have a disability. Once in a sled it doesn’t matter if you have working legs or not. Sled skating levels the playing field.
How will I know if it’s a good activity for me, for my particular situation?
Come out to the “Try Sled Hockey for Free” for a free fun sled skating day. Pushers are available for sled hockey players with limited arm use.
How do I start?
Fill out the player registration form, send it in (firstname.lastname@example.org). We have safety gear for you to get in a sled.
You can contact Mike Leavitt or Beverly Hott by emailing email@example.com for further information.