Hockey Canada has approved national policies that mandate all Initiation-aged players receive age-appropriate programming on cross-ice or half-ice surfaces (effective for the 2016-17 season) and Novice-aged players for the 2019-20 season. A key aspect of each policy is that each of Hockey Canada’s 13 branches can develop a provincial model that best meets the needs of its participants.
In February, Hockey Alberta distributed a Memorandum outlining the key principles that would be the foundation for this province’s Intro to Hockey - Novice Program starting in 2019-20.
Hockey Alberta is now releasing its complete Intro to Hockey Model for all players aged 5-8.
This Memorandum provides more details on Seasonal Structure, Grouping of Players, Practice Environment, and Game Format requirements for Initiation and Novice hockey, starting in 2019-20. In general, the requirements include:
- 2:1 practice to game ratio.
- Seasonal structure divided into Developmental and Regular.
- Participants divided into single birth years.
- Game format is 4 on 4, plus goalies; no score kept.
- Games played on a surface size no larger than 100’ x 85’.