21 May Vicky Sunohara on Skill Development
Vicky Sunohara on the benefits of summer training on and off ice
After speaking with 3 time Olympian Vicky Sunohara it’s easy to see why she was able to play at the National level from the first women’s world championships in 1990 until 2008. “You have to keep playing, keep playing at the highest level you can and keep loving it” Vicky told Vital Hockey as she described how getting to the top takes a lot of work but as long as you love the game you
can get there!
Vicky grew up playing hockey in Scarborough , when she was 7 she was kicked out of the boys league and started to play with the Scarborough girls. She was recruited coming out of high school to NorthEastern University and received a scholarship. After 2 years with Boston she transferred to the University of Toronto for 2 more years playing in the OUA. She was then recruited for the first ever women’s national hockey team. She went on to win 7 gold medals at worlds and 2 in the Olympics.
Her advice about what made her career so successful is to “get the best coaching you can, work hard and be the best you can be.” She really emphasized working hard and being dedicated, both on and off the ice.
At Vital Hockey we are highly focused on power skating and edge work to improve player’s games. When we asked Vicky for her opinion on the skating ability of national players she said “skating comes next to none, you know if you can’t skate you can’t get there. One of the first things coaches and scouts look at is skating ability, it is really important to be a great skater to get to the next level.” I play for Vicky , at the University of Toronto for the Varsity Blues Women’s hockey team and let me tell you, she means business when she says you have to be a good skater, we are constantly doing drills to work on improving speed and stride. And that is exactly what we do at Vital Hockey, we do drills that will take you out of your comfort zone get you using your edges and skating at your maximum potential.
Its not just on ice where you can work on your game though, off ice is extremely important too. After interviewing the Varsity Blues head strength and conditioning coach you can understand why. When asked about the importance of off ice training and summer training programs for hockey players he laid it out fact for fact. When you do summer training programs you are increasing your performance, increasing your power output, getting faster stronger and fitter. This increases you capacity to apply your skill (you can dangle a lot better when you’re not tired). With all of this comes increased mental capacity, you realize how hard you can work and how far you can push yourself so when you get back on the ice your ready to do what it takes, you become a game changer.
At vital hockey skills improving your game is what we do. This summer were going to be working hard on and off the ice.
– Strength and technique for skating, building power and increasing agility.
– Skills work , shooting and dangles
– off ice conditioning giving you the mental toughness to use your skill
effectively on the ice.
Sign up for one of our camps this summer and see for yourself.