Feature Piece by C.C.

There was five minutes left in triple overtime in the state championship. My teammate Leo has a rebound from our defense men’s shot and puts it in. A barrage of sticks, gloves, and helmets go up in the air. I was the happiest I have ever been as we were the 2010 Squirt B State Champions. Hockey is a sport that was created in Canada and it has been around for quite some time. So what makes it have such a large influence across the globe. It’s not a cheap sport to play such as soccer where you only need cleats, a ball, and some shin guards. In a sense that way it can a little bit of a financial commitment. It also requires a sheet of ice to be played on or if you’re playing pond hockey all you really need is skates a stick maybe helmet and gloves. According to the IIHF there is 1.64 million kids across the globe playing organized hockey as of 2013 and has grown a tremendous amount since. Now how does this sport impact the world so much.

From personal experiences with hockey which I have had a lot play the game since I was seven (i’m seventeen now) there is a ton passion for the game by everyone you’re surrounded by. One of which was my brother which I asked him a question on this and this is what he said.  “I believe that no matter what level you play or not it is always fun no matter who you are surrounded by.” On top of the the hockey community is fantastic and all of the parents are so supportive of their kids, some of which played in their youth as well. On my team that i’m currently on we are friends inside the rink and outside and we always have eachothers backs. When you’re at the rink for two and a half hours everyday from August to February the environment in the locker room becomes a brotherhood. This a huge part of the game to me and to others also and it makes the game so much more enjoyable. The coaches are a huge part of it aswell they can be life mentors and they have taught me so much on how to work hard and what i’ll benefit from it.

Social aspects of this sport has helped me grow as an adult what I mean by this is that i’ve learned to be responsible, to make myself accountable, and to fully commit myself to something. Growing up I was super shy and my best friend to this day I met through hockey and when I was young I was really only vocal to my teammates those where the kids I felt comfortable talking to. My brother was more quite socially then I was when i asked him this question he said “A lot of the kids at school who played hockey became some of my closer friends even though we were not on the same team, we just loved hockey.” Later in life probably the end of freshman year this mostly transferred over to school. Because of this I was able to make more friends some of which I wouldn’t have today if it wasn’t for hockey. I want hockey as much of an impact on others as it did and does on mine.

In the United States the movement for Children to exercise more and be outside more has never been bigger before. Video Games and things of that nature has grown and allowed the amount of children to stay in doors and not physically go outside and interact with each other. The NFL has a huge program called “Play 60” that they promote at every game and sometimes you’ll see it on commercials or if you’re at the game you will see it all over the stadium. The main idea of this program is to have kids play and exercise outside for only 60 minutes every day. I think that the NHL should have a similar like program or any major professional sport should have something like the NFL has for kids.

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