WHAT IS USA HOCKEY’S AMERICAN DEVELOPMENT MODEL?

The ADM is USA Hockey’s nationwide player-development program for youth hockey associations. It’s based on age-appropriate, age-specific competition and training for boys and girls, beginning with their first steps onto the ice and carrying them through age 18 and beyond. The ADM places a heightened emphasis on skill development and long-term athlete development principles, providing a blueprint for the best possible youth hockey experience. Put simply, it’s doing what’s best for kids.

HOW DOES THE ADM HELP PLAYERS REACH THEIR FULL POTENTIAL?

First and foremost, by enhancing athleticism and emphasizing skill development. Through science and experience, we’ve learned that the world’s elite athletes were almost never early-age specialists. They enjoyed a variety of sports and activities. They climbed. They swam. They biked. In short, they were kids. The ADM lets kids be kids. It encourages them to have fun and it amplifies their all-around athleticism through programming developed by hockey experts, sport scientists and child development specialists. This programming lifts the lid off kids’ athletic potential, blending with science to create a full toolbox of athleticism. When they apply it to hockey, good things happen. When we complement it with age appropriate, age-specific skill training, good becomes great.

HOW DOES THE ADM LOOK?

At the younger age levels, it looks like fun and constant motion in small spaces. The ADM encourages station-based practices, small-area games and cross-ice competition to deliver more repetitions, more puck touches and more skill development per hour of ice time. It provides the most efficient, most engaging development path for children, keeping them both in the game and on a path toward their full potential.

The ADM encourages a 3:1 practice-to-game ratio at these younger levels, while also making hockey more family-friendly. The ADM emphasizes development at your local rink in mite (8U), squirt (10U) and peewee (12U) hockey. This emphasis helps children benefit from more skill development and less burnout.

As children progress in age, the ADM progresses with them, providing age-specific programming designed to prepare, propel and polish, with curriculum proven to produce Olympic- and NHL-caliber players.

WHAT RESOURCES DOES USA HOCKEY PROVIDE?

USA Hockey produces an unmatched library of hockey resources for coaches, parents and administrators, ranging from proven practice plans and extensive video to local, on-site coaching. USA Hockey’s regional ADM managers serve youth hockey associations nationwide, leading practices and educating at the grassroots level. These advocates are former NHL and NCAA coaches and players, with education backgrounds, who have dedicated themselves to bettering American hockey through age-appropriate competition and training.