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Most of your career, you’ve probably warmed-up with the rest of the team or been left to do your own thing. Either scenario leaves you with some know-how and knowledge gaps in exactly what a goaltender needs before a skate. Let’s get rid of the guesswork for you!


Your position is unique, but only a fraction of your prep work needs to be goalie-specific. Let Dan Allison and Jess Buckley, Win Your Warm Up Co-Founders and professional strength coaches shed light on the process. When you’re in a pinch to get dressed for an adult league game, you can get away with some bare minimum stuff and still feel great:  


  • Release (optional; max five minutes) - This is your foam rolling or soft tissue work. It’s up to you which muscles and for how long you choose to roll.
  • Resets (two minutes) - These give you range of motion back after being crunched up all day while also helping you relax out of that ‘wound up’ state. 
  • Readiness (five minutes) - It’s what you’re used to seeing; the drills that move you through your range of motion or give TLC to joints that gave you trouble in the past.


In a pinch, that’s seven minutes to ensure you can breathe when the game’s hard and move in any direction at a moment’s notice. These tend to be good prep work regardless of your position. While Jess has done most of her work with skaters, Dan specializes in goalies at Omenvo Performance Academy, training folks from the NHL to college levels. 


So, what’s one thing Dan suggests about every goaltender do before they step on the ice? The 90/90 Hip Lift with Internal Rotation, which Dan explains, “helps prep the goalie to be able to rotate their hips inward and accept the stresses of typical goalie positions (RVH, Butterfly).” It’s easy-to-learn and you should feel the difference immediately - here’s how to do it. 


When you’re ready to learn some new warm-up drills, there’s resources out there for you! Two favorites are www.goalietrainingpro.com and www.theprehabguys.com. Both have a ton of anatomy, body care, and exercise technique information available. If the research seems daunting, eliminate the guesswork by letting Win Your Warm Up get your mental game and physical prep taken care of with a structured plan! However you choose to approach rule breaking and fact finding, have some fun with it and enjoy the process! If you’re looking for a few easy Release, Reset, and Readiness drills to get started, grab them here free. 


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Especially at lower skill levels, lots of teams think "warming up a goalie" entails "taking a bunch of slapshots."  Sound out your mates, find out who knows how to warm up a goalie, and make sure everyone knows that it's their job to warm you up before every game.  For some reason, the team's best shooter is NEVER the guy who knows how to warm up a goalie :P   If no one on your team knows how, search out a good youtube video on the topic and show it to the person you have the best rapport with and/or has the highest hockey iq and ask them to be in charge of warming you up using those methods.  With some teams, the lads won't really feel settled if you don't let them take some slapshots, but you should claim control of the first 50-75% of your pre-game warm-up time.

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