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How Trainers Can Help Prepare for Playdowns

By Tony Caravaggio, Chair, Trainers Program, 01/18/18, 6:45PM EST


Making sure players are ready, safe for important time of year

It’s Playdowns season and it’s time for everyone on the team - players, coaches and staff - to be on the top of their game.

As players get taller and bigger throughout the season it is important that the size of their equipment keeps up with them. Parents are definitely aware of how fast their children grow. Ahead of Playdowns, this is a perfect time to check up on equipment and make sure everything still fits properly. It can also be a chance to get ahead of next year’s gear shopping and purchase any equipment that is necessary. If Trainers notice something that is ill-fitting on a player, they can notify the parents of the situation and why it is necessary to have properly fitting gear.

Along with spot checking equipment on players throughout the year, properly sized equipment is crucial for players to feel comfortable on the ice. It helps them move around without restriction and can reduce risk of injury. Equipment that is too large on a player will slide around from the area it is meant to be protecting.

Photo Credit: Kevin Sousa Photography

Just because Playdowns means the season is nearing an end doesn’t mean any shortcuts should be taken in cleaning equipment or other safety measures. All equipment should be aired out after every game and cleaned frequently. This prevents buildup of harmful bacteria and reduces unpleasant odours that can occur. Proper maintenance of equipment also can extend the lifespan of certain items, therefore reducing additional costs.

Trainers should take regular inventory of their supplies, especially towards the end of the season. Restocking supplies is very important. Using items a few times here and there may not seem like much at the time but can add up in the long run and leave you unprepared in the moment that you need them again. The last thing a team needs to be unprepared or missing something in a crucial moment of the year.

As we get into the thick of Playdowns, teams work together to remove as many distractions as possible and have players perform at their best on the ice. The number one goal should be to have players prepared and safe on the ice. Simple reminders, spot checks and inventory can reduce the chance of any last-minute stress or scrambling.

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Tony Caravaggio is a native of Paris, ON and has held the position of Chair, Trainers Program since the 2016-17 season.

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