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Surprised this hasn't generated a load of wise comments.
My opinion if we're talking AAA hockey (elite/tier 1/whatever) is that you roll the lines as mites, keep it fun and about player and team goals. By the time they are 1st or definitely 2d year squirts if a kid isn't performing you shorten the bench for the good of the team development but it's on the coach to work with the kid to get him working harder, and also communicating with parents about it.
Easy answer is to say you don't bench kids at all because the coach is the one who took the kid but sometimes roster decisions are made above the coach.
Accountability is going to vary by coach and sometimes by program. Another example of why it's important to choose your coach wisely. My kid got sat for a period in SQT Minor because he had to skip a practice to finish a homework assignment that he knew about well in advance. It taught my kid a valuable lesson and the coach talked to me about it in advance to ensure my cooperation. I know many coaches that wouldn't have done a thing about it as they don't want to deal with the parents.
So what age..pretty much any age if it's handled correctly and without embarrassing the player.
Not listening or caring, pee wees. Time for the play
Not trying (see above as well, Bantam minor. Sorry, your kid isn’t going 100% at this age, he sits.
If a kid isn’t bringing it hard as a midget every time on the ice, well, he shouldn’t play. Cut him.
If the kid puts the puck in the net, who cares.
Typical idiot parent response. Let me guess you paid your kid a dollar a goal when he was in squirts? Geez, I wonder where he learned those bad habits from?
The weekend is coming up so make sure you wash his game jersey so you can wear in the stands!
"...that is similar to telling employees to show up on time for work."
Ahhh, have you ever employed a millennial?
i must have the wrong board. the one i thought i was on was filled with 'players that wanted to be there' and 'self motivated' and 'he wants to go [to games/practice hours away]' and 'looking to get to the next level'.
working and skating hard should be a given. if not, they should not be there. interesting how that point was overlooked. of course there will 'those days' but i assume the OP was talking about a long-term trend. 'yellers' have a short life as a coach (a/k/a Mike Keenan) but then again it looks impressive to those easily...
just my opinion, but if you're a coach...you never stop encouraging kids.