Stratford, ON - A new hockey season is almost upon us, and with it comes another year of a successful partnership between Chevrolet and Hockey Canada that puts the focus not on goals and assists, but on the life skills hockey can teach.For the third season in a row, Chevrolet will be offering the FREE Coach’s Kit to Peewee teams across the country.
REGISTRATION IS NOW OPEN!
Back from last year are pucks, featuring the Chevrolet Hockey values – Believe, Care, Determination, Heart, Motivation, Perseverance and Unity – and skate laces that include the same words.
But there are a few new additions as well. A coach bag, helmet decals, playbooks and an acrylic puck to be presented to the Most Inspirational Player at the end of the year are all part of the kits for this season.
The Coach’s Kit has been a big hit in the first two seasons, with more than 3,400 sent from coast to coast to coast during the 2016-17 season, including to Krista Lindsay and her Williams Lake Kings in the B.C. interior.
“We chose to give out the items on a game-by-game basis,” Lindsay says. “As coaches, we would choose the most inspirational player from that game. But it actually got harder and harder for us to choose because we had such good teamwork. The kids began inspiring each other and working together, so to have little rewards like that is something they can look forward to and aspire to win.”
Peewee hockey has long been considered as the level where players begin to forge their own identities as hockey players and think of where they would like to go with their playing careers, and the Coach’s Kit can serve as a guiding light of sorts to the 11- and 12-year-old players.
Lindsay puts the focus on the importance of positive reinforcement and learning that hard work pays off.
“I think things like [the Coach’s Kits] go a long way for that age group,” she says. “They really like to have affirmation that they are doing a good job. It doesn’t have to come with winning a tournament, or being in first place in the standings, but to get recognition on a game-to-game basis is really neat for them.”
But the Coach’s Kit isn’t the only piece to the Chevrolet puzzle.
The 2017-18 season will see the return of the Good Deeds Cup, which recognizes Peewee teams from across Canada for what they accomplish off the ice in their communities.
Last year, close to 100 video submissions were received before the Glace Bay Miners were voted national winners, earning a prize that included a feature that ran on national television last spring.
The Miners visited a nursing home on Valentine’s Day to spend time with residents and hand out treats, and were also recognized for collecting donations for the family of a local player who has been battling cancer.
More details will be announced for the 2017-18 edition of the Good Deeds Cup in the near future.
With puck drop just weeks away on the new season, Lindsay suggests coaches get their teams involved as soon as possible (only 3,000 Coach’s Kits are available this season).
“There are so many neat things the kids can have from [these programs], so I suggest coaches sign up as soon as they can,” she says. “I think it’s important for coaches to be paying attention to these programs and taking advantage of them.”
For more information on the Coach’s Kit and Good Deeds Cup, visit ChevroletHockey.com.