Everything You Need to Know about the Sport Ice Hockey

Everything You Need to Know about the Sport Ice Hockey

Everything You Need to Know about the Sport Ice Hockey


Team Sports Ice Hockey - Ohio Fitness Garage


The birthplace of hockey has always been an unsure one, but the first official indoor game took place in 1875 in Montreal. Prior to that, hockey was played all throughout Canada on icy ponds or lakes, and the sport has reached worldwide popularity since. The most notable league is the National Hockey League (NHL), but there are leagues throughout Europe that are comparable.


How to play Hockey


Modern hockey can be quite an expensive game to pick up because of all the equipment a player needs to have before even hitting the ice -- this includes pads, gloves, a helmet, skates, and a stick. Unlike other sports where we just use our feet, you’ll have to become an adept ice skater before considering picking up this sport.


Each hockey roster has a maximum of 20 players, with six players on the ice at all times for each team (disregarding penalties and overtime rules). Coaches can substitute in players at any time in a series of “lines”, and players can freely skate throughout the rink -- excluding the goalie.


Rules of Hockey


  • There are three forwards, two defensemen, and one goalie on the ice for a hockey team. The forwards consist of a left wing, a right wing, and the center. Think of the center as the quarterback, as they’re constantly facilitating plays on the ice.
  • Hockey is played on an ice rink, which is 200 feet long by 85 feet wide, and a corner radius of 28 feet because rink corners are rounded. The goal is 11 feet out from the endboard.
  • The game starts with the puck drop, which is similar to the basketball tip-off.
  • There are three long 20 minute periods in hockey, with much fewer opportunities to cease the play clock than other sports.
  • To score, players must successfully shoot the puck in the goal -- which has decreased in size over the years. Modern goals are only 72 inches wide by 48 inches tall.
  • Players cannot use their hands to pass, only their sticks and their skates. However, players are able to knock a puck out of the air with their gloves.
  • Players cannot interfere with a goalie, or sit in the blue crescent. This results in a penalty.
  • There are either two minute or five minute penalties -- both resulting in power plays, in which one team will have more players on the ice than the other.
  • The most recent overtime rule is that games go to one period of overtime which is five minutes long in a 4 versus 4 setting. If the game is still tied after that, the game goes to best of three shootout style. If the game is still tied after that, there is a sudden death shootout -- meaning first goal wins.
  • Winning a game counts as two points, losing a game counts as none. However, if your team manages to make it to overtime and still loses, you’ll earn one point in the standings.


Almost entirely unique to the sport, fist fights are actually legal in hockey. Granted, both players involved will take a trip to the penalty box afterwards, but referees usually let them duke it out until there’s a clear winner.


Written by Devin Pickell


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