• Bell MTS Iceplex - Manitoba's Community Hockey Complex
  • Winnipeg Jets
  • Manitoba Moose

A Spring Season in Review


Spring Hockey. Some parents search for teams with the highest winning percentage, or most exciting tournament destinations. Some who believe that Spring Hockey is truly about which team has the best group of parents to socialize with.

Jets Hockey Development Spring Program is taking a step away from the common spring hockey experience. We pride ourselves in a program that is always evolving and changing to adapt to the player’s needs. We feel that it is our responsibility to provide each player a valuable hockey experience. A program with experienced, knowledgeable coaches who respect the willingness to win, while understanding the importance and impact of long term development.

Our program is based off of a greater practice to game ratio rooted in continuous repetition of fundamental hockey skills, providing each player individual instruction to reach their goals within the season. All while providing an exciting, beneficial program that players can be excited to be a part of and parents can be proud to send their son or daughter to.

JHD Spring Hockey can be summarized in 2 words: Player Development.

This year’s spring season has just wrapped up for all of our Jets Hockey Development players, with 11 teams and 2 skill development programs. Here`s a little highlight of how the last few months went:


Teams excelled in a total of 18 training sessions, some of which were exhibition games, where they worked on individual skills including; skating, puck handling, passing and
shooting. Players were introduced to team concepts based on the age and level they played at. We were more than thrilled at the receptiveness of players to the teaching that was provided, which was echoed in the exhibition and tournament games.


Off-Ice Training

All 8 off-ice training sessions were held in our very own Focus Fitness. Players were introduced to how to make off-ice training a part of their regular routine. Players used the gym space for age appropriate workouts, improving their strength and flexibility.


All teams attended 2 tournaments this spring where they were able to put everything together. As some may have noticed with a varying display of results within our teams, it is often difficult to predict the level of teams in which you will come up against. Regardless of competition level, all teams showed their relentlessness through working hard, having fun and implementing the skills that were being taught in practice. We saw a huge improvement in the skill level of all the players, from week 1 to the end of the season.

Skills Groups

The two skills groups did an amazing job this spring in working to improve in skill specific practice session.  Many of these players unfortunately signed up late when rosters for teams were filled, but decided that dedicating their time in spring to work on their individual skills was going to be a huge benefit to their development.

skatingLooking Forward – Spring 2017

Looking forward to the 2017 spring program, we’re excited to have players return and work on developing their game.

We’d like all parents to keep an eye out for our evaluation skates, which will commence around the end of September. These evaluation skates are vital in helping your players secure a spot on one of our spring teams.

In order to make our program better, we will be offering a more consistent training schedule, be in close contact with potential tournaments to find appropriate level tournaments and our professional coaches will be leading all of our on and off-ice sessions.

Come join our Head Coaches Dave Cameron, Lee Stubbs, Nate Hatton and Dean Court for another great spring.

Teams for 2017
2004Future Jets & Jr Moose
2005 Future Jets & Jr Moose
2006Future Jets & Jr Moose
2007Future Jets & Jr Moose
2008Future Jets & Jr Moose
Skills Groups

“I can’t believe how much better my son got in a 7-week time span.” – Parent from 06’-08’ group

“This is our sons 3rd Spring at the Iceplex and has been by far the best development camp in my opinion.”- Parent from Moose Team

“The coaches were great and supportive to the children and their progression.” – Parent from Future Jets Team

“The on ice practices have been second to none and we really see a difference in our son.” –  Parent from Moose Program

13 Things To Make You More Awesome!

1. Be good at the things that require no talent. Be on time, be ready, work hard, be engaged in what your are doing. Everyone has the ability to do these things, few people choose to do them well.

2. Pick up heavy things (properly) and walk around with them. Everyone always wants to be stronger. This will help.

3. Do mobility work. I have never met anyone that is too strong, but I have met people who are strong and move poorly. You want both strength and movement.

4. Assuming you have two legs that work you should squat more weight than you bench.

5. Everyone has titles in life that they are given such as father, mother, sister, brother, son, daughter, friend. Although a lot of these titles are automatic it is important that you earn these titles. Be good at being these things. Your life is bigger than just you, it’s also the people around you. There is nothing more important than fulfilling these roles to the best of your ability.

6. Finding yourself is stupid. You are exactly where you are all the time because you put yourself there. If you want to be something or somewhere different change it. Finding yourself makes it sound like you are floating around hoping to find something by accident. Don’t hope to find anything, create it. Take responsibility for your life and create it.

7. Get better. Every single day.

8. Never think you know everything. The exact moment in time when you think you know everything is the exact same moment that you stop getting better. (refer to #7)

9. Pull more than you push.

10. Be honest with yourself. I have seen many people sabotage their own progress because they are simply not honest with themselves. Everyone knows the guy who says he benches 300 lbs. but when you watch him he stops the bar 6 inches from his chest. More like elbow bends then bench press. Don’t be this guy. The funny thing is the respect and admiration that this guy so desperately seeks becomes less of a reality the more he lies to himself. People do not respect that. Do weight that you can do and do it right. You will progress much faster this way and people will respect you more. Be honest.

11. Use thick bars or thick grips whenever you can

12. Read. Make time every day. Read things that genuinely interest and inspire you.

13. Hustle


Why It’s Important To Focus On Mobility

Many people overlook the importance of mobility in training regimes. Mobility can be defined as the ability to move a limb actively through its full range of motion in a controlled and stable manner. To clarify, there is a difference between flexibility and mobility.  Flexibility is the ability of a muscle (or group of muscles) to passively lengthen through a range of motion. Stretching works on lengthening and shortening tight muscles to help to improve flexibility, while mobility goes much deeper than muscle tightness.  Mobility addresses all elements that may limit movement and performance such as soft tissue restriction, range of motion dysfunction, and joint capsule restriction to name a few.

Joint mobility Jasexercises are beneficial for increasing range of motion and restoring lost movement patterns, but the benefits exceed that. They can help to prevent injuries before they arise.  Don’t get me wrong: raw strength, speed, and power are all extremely crucial, but equally so is the ability to move your joints through their full range of motion, especially for athletes. Joint mobility should be considered as general maintenance for your body. Just as your car needs oiling and tires need pumping, our bodies have similar needs. Strength development suffers without proper joint mobility. If you have reduced joint mobility, performing quality deadlifts, squats, presses etc. is going to become difficult. Inadequate mobility also significantly increases your risk of injury because if one joint does not move well, there’s going to be compensation from somewhere else.  This can lead to a loss of power, strength, or range of motion and increase ones risk of injury.


Myself, and Austen Brassard of the Manitoba Moose performing the “Couch Stretch”.

Power output and speed can be compromised with reduced joint mobility. When shooting an arrow, the farther you pull the string back, the more tension there is, and the farther the arrow shoots. This analogy can be applied to your joints.  For example, while squatting, greater joint mobility at the hips and ankles will allow you to get lower and in turn will allow you to generate more tension and greater power.

You can use mobility exercises as a warm up, an active recovery between sets, or as a workout on its own. Joint mobility exercises can be prescribed as methods of rehabilitation, pre-habilitation, and as a means of athletic enhancement.

One mobility exercise that I would highly recommend is the “Couch Stretch”. You’ll see athletes, and everyday people, using this exercise to increase their mobility. The best part about this is that it can be performed at the gym, or even in the comfort of your own home (see photos).

People generally disregard the mobility portion of the workout without realizing its benefits to their overall well-being.  Properly learned and maintained joint mobility can restore complete freedom of motion to your many joints.

-Jasmine, Trainer at Focus Fitness

Myths About Strength Training in Hockey

Each and every year strength training becomes more and more popular with hockey players of all ages. Along with its popularity come many misconceptions, myths and misunderstandings of how to train properly and what are realistic expectations of what an athlete can achieve from their training. Here are two of the popular myths regarding strength training and hockey.

Myth #1-My child is too young to train and it will ruin their growth potential

Truth-There is no magic age as to when someone can start training. If you were to wait until you completely stopped growing and all your bones were developed you could be waiting until your early twenties. Each athlete has an age and what we call a training age. The training age is how many years that they have been involved with a good strength and conditioning program. The training age is the one that really dictates what can be done in the gym. For example if we have an athlete who is 16 years old who we have been working with for the last two years and they have demonstrated that they are efficient at moving their own body then we will put them under load while lifting. If another athlete who is 18 years old comes in and has never been a gym before we won’t put them under load just because they are older. They first have to learn the principles of strength training which is being efficient and effective at moving your own body.

Myth #2- My child has to play hockey year round or they will fall behind

Truth- We work with many professional hockey players and I can tell you that the best players are also the best all around athletes. This is not a coincidence. Nowadays often at a young age people want their kids to specialize in sports. This stunts the child’s athletic growth and ends up having the adverse effect of what they were originally wanting to accomplish in the first place, being a better hockey player. There are prime developmental  years in the early teens where kids are at a prime position to develop athletic attributes such as reaction time, hand eye co-ordination, and proprioception  (the awareness of one’s own body in space). The best ways for kids to develop these are to play a variety of different sports or to train. Almost every sport that a kid will play in summer, baseball, soccer, tennis etc. provide tons of opportunity to work on hand eye co-ordination, changes of direction and so on. A great training program will accomplish the same thing.

All That You Have

Certain things in your life can be taken away from you. Others rely on other people or depend on outside circumstances. When you have been around for awhile in the world of sports and in life you begin to realize that all that you have at the end of the day is your effort. I played football and many other sports for years, basketball, rugby, bodybuilding, marathons, strong man to name a few. I was very fortunate to win and win a lot. Not just in sports but in life, I have a career that I love, great family and friends, I have a beautiful wife and two amazing healthy kids. Yes not sports related but still all big wins in my book. But in with those wins there have been loses both on and off the field. I’ve lost big games, I’ve failed in achieving goals, lost relationships, not gotten jobs, missed opportunities and more. But out of all of it I have always had one thing, my hard work, my effort. That’s all you can control. The one single factor that you can always control at all times is your effort.  Win or lose, rain or shine it cannot be taken from you. It is always there. Your effort is who you are, it is your foundation. After all what good is a belief system that is not backed by the effort to carry it out. It’s just talk and no walk. If I have learned anything in my life to this point it is that you cannot pick and choose when to work hard and when to mail it in. You either work hard or you don’t. That’s it. I know because I have made the mistake. It is simple when my effort wasn’t high the result wasn’t great. When the result wasn’t great it spread to other aspects of my life and had a negative effect. In the words of the great Vince Lombardi, “Winning is a habit, unfortunately so is losing.” Does effort guarantee victory? Of course not. But it gives you an opportunity and it ensures the quality of your being. Do not make excuses why you can’t, instead find a reason to get it done. Work hard, put forth the effort in everything you do. In a time when people find a million different ways to try and define themselves it’s the only definition of yourself that really matters. Put the effort in to work hard, to be a good person. At the end of the day it’s what you hang your hat on. It’s all that you have.