Available at the Alger Arena via drop box (will be done within 24 hrs.) if attendant is present or by appointment.
A HISTORY OF SKATES AND SKATE BLADES
The History of skates, or at least movement on ice, dates back to the time of cave dwellers. They were the first to use ice as an easy method to move heavy loads such as a recently killed animal. When they had to move these large loads, they would build a pallet-like structure by lashing logs together and tying thin branches with bark stripped off onto the bottom to act as runners.
The development of devices like this was slow and showed little change through the time of Christ.
About 2,000 years ago, people in what is now the Scandinavian area of North East Europe, were the first to put runners on their feet. This allowed faster movement on the ice for the individual. With runners on their feet and on their sleds, they could cover much more distance in a day.
These runners were made of pieces of antler or bone. Antler was less popular as it curved and allowed little contact with the ice and, therefore, little control. The later use of sections of bone, cut from the long leg bones of cattle, proved more practical. These longer and flatter pieces of bone were drilled and tied to the bottom of the skater’s boots with strips of leather lacing. There are references to these “blades” in both art and literature from the middle ages.
Children in the Netherlands begun to use skating as entertainment sometime around 700 A.D. By 1600, with a vast network of canals, the use of skates became very important as an inexpensive and enjoyable means of transportation between towns.
It is the Dutch word “schaats”-meaning “leg bones” or “shank bones” that came through translation into English as “skates”.
Bone blades or runners were replaced by wood between 1250 and 1350. Although bone was not a superior material as it chipped and broke, the more resilient wood also had its drawbacks, as it wore down faster and would splinter.
In 1572 the first iron blades were manufactured. They offered much less drag and lateral slippage on the ice, than wood or bone. The metal blades held edges that could be used to push against the ice without slipping and helped the skater go faster.
In the late 1600’s instructional books on how to ice skate began to surface and thus promoted the popularity of ice skating even more.
The first skating club was formed in Edinburgh, Scotland in 1742. The continued growth and popularity of skating and skaters’ clubs began a worldwide spread. The iron skating blades, still tied onto boots and shoes, came to North America with immigrants and British soldiers in the late 1700’s.
Ice skating did not develop as an organized, competitive sport until the introduction of steel blades that were permanently attached to boots. The steel blades first appeared in 1800. They were thinner, stronger and gave the skater much greater speed and control. They also allowed the skater to do tricks and fancy maneuvers.
Speed skating that had emerged as the first skating competition in the 1600’s greatly benefited from the new steel blades. In 1864, a U.S. ballet dancer named Jackson Haines created a free-flowing skating technique that incorporated waltz-like movements. Using the steel skates, he was the first to firmly attach them to high top boots. Ice speed skating, which had developed in the Netherlands in the 17th century, was given a boost by the innovation in skate construction. Figure skating became an Olympic event in 1908. Speed skating for men was part of the 1924 Olympic games, but it was not until 1960, that women’s speed skating was placed on the Olympic agenda. Toe picks on figure skates and hollow ground blades were added in the last 150 years.
USA Hockey Parent/Spectator Recommendations
The following information was condensed from the “USA Hockey Adult Behavioral Task Force Report”.
“When the games people play become more important then the people themselves, competition can begin to have a destructive impact on society”
The USA Hockey Adult Behavioral Task Force met in Chicago on November 21-23, 1997, to address a concern of USA Hockey, the behavior of adults (parents and spectators) involved in youth hockey which is negatively impacting the sport and participants. While this concern is not unique to hockey amongst youth sports, indeed we are addressing a societal issue of behavior which surrounds sports at all levels. USA Hockey can be a model for other youth sports by effectively implementing programs and policies to change behavior, to provide a positive sport experience for the growth of participants as players and as citizens, and for the great game of ice/inline hockey.
THE LANGUAGE OF THE GAME
Assist: A player is awarded an assist if he is one of the last two players to pass the puck to a teammate when a goal is scored.Hockey has a language all its own. The following guide should be helpful in picking up hockey’s lingo.
Back Check: To return to your defending zone and help retrieve the puck from the opposition.
Blue Lines: The pair of one-foot wide blue lines which extend across the ice at a distance of 60 feet from each goal. These lines break up the ice into attacking, neutral and defending zones.
Body Check: Use of the body on an opponent. It is legal when the opponent has possession of the puck.
Butt-ending: To hit an opponent with the end of the stick farthest from the blade. It is illegal and calls for a penalty.
Center Ice: The one-foot wide red line that extends across the ice at the center of the playing surface.
Cross Checking: To use your stick to hit or push off an opponents body. It is illegal and calls for a penalty.
Goal Crease: Area directly in front of the goaltender. It is four feet wide and eight feet long and marked off by red lines and painted light blue. Offensive players who do not have possession of the puck may not enter.
Deke: To fake an opponent out of position.
Face Off: The dropping of the puck between one player from each team to begin or resume play.
Forecheck: To check an opponent in his end of the rink, preventing an offensive rush.
Freezing the Puck: To hold the puck against the boards with either the skate or stick to get a stoppage of play.
Goal Line: The red line which runs between the goal posts and extends in both directions to the side boards.
Goal Mouth: The area just in front of the goal and crease lines.
Hat Trick: The scoring of three or more goals by a player in one game.
One-timer: Hitting the puck directly upon receiving a pass. The offensive player takes his backswing while the puck is on its way to him and tries to time his swing with the arrival of the puck.
Penalty Box: The area opposite the team benches where penalized players serve time.
Playmaker: The assisting in three goals by a player in one game.
Power Play: A power play occurs when a team has a one-man or two-man advantage because of an opponent’s penalties.
Pulling the Goalie: Replacing the goalie with an extra skater in a high-risk attempt to tie the game. This primarily occurs when a team trails, usually by one goal, late in the game.
Save: A shot blocked by the goaltender, which would have bean a goal had it not been stopped.
Screened Shot: The goaltender’s view is blocked by players between the goal and the shooter.
Slap Shot: Hitting the puck with the blade of the stick after taking a full backswing.
Slot: The area immediately in front of the goal crease. It is from this zone that most goals are scored and where the most furious activity takes place.
Splitting the Defense: The player with the puck attempts to squeeze between the opponent’s defensemen.
Stick Handling: To control the puck along the ice with the stick.
Top Shelf: Term used to describe when an offensive player shoots high in an attempt to beat the goalie by shooting the puck into the top portion of the net.
Wraparound: A player skates around behind the opposing goal and attempts to wrap the puck around the goal post and under the goalie.
Wrist Shot: Hitting the puck with the blade of the stick using a quick snap of the wrist rather than a full back swing.