Great feedback in this thread. Did a bit of research on the figure skating idea and it seems to have had a great effect on many players. Who knew. Already lined up a few names for the summer.
Some good recommendations on coaches. Unfortunately, most are simply too far away with our busy schedule. Hoping to find a decent guy south of Boston that does small group coaching (focusing on stickhandling mostly). The search continues.
Around 13-14 years old my son did a small group (3 kids) skating session for 2 hours a week for 6 weeks. Was the best money we ever spent in hockey. Made a huge difference.
The class warfare comment made me chuckle. I sure hope it doesn't turn into that.
Sounds like private lessons have helped your kids. Would you be willing to share the names of the programs/coaches used?
Find a figure skating teacher with some experience working in hockey and see if she will work with your kids. Do half our sessions 1 or 2 times a week during summer and kids will be skating circles around the kids that went to 6 tournaments... most of the hockey skating gurus come from figure skating and lots of NHL guys now employing 5 ft tall women to teach them to skate.... then buy 100 pucks and a net and leave them in the driveway...if they never get used it will tell you something.
Private lessons will be the difference maker between two kids who are almost there.
I mean Hannafin did fine in the EHF but credits his success to private lessons with the Lovell's. Same thing with Gaudette.
Dynamic, Paul Vincents, Ken Hodge's ( New outfit). All are cut from the same cloth and will give your kid the individualized attention and correct flaws. Expensive but far less than private lessons. Make sure your kid continues skating and working on what he learns in his spare time.
Private lessons will help with game scenarios/situations as the instructor can walk through these step by step with your kid, but you have to have a plan.
If you are looking for skating improvement, try a small group setting to help with costs. If your son is forward, don't go to a coach who specializes on D play, etc..
There are a lot of instructors to choose from, dont just pick based off name, talk to the instructor with your kid, you will quickly get the feeling if its a good fit.
Remember, most people on this board make $25-$55 per hour, be wise when you are going to drop $100.00-$200.00 per hour once a week if not more.
Got a website for Ken Hodge?