Each season, more than 600 boys and girls play hockey with Hockey West Island.
Children can join as of the age of 4, where they will play in the U7 (Under 7) division. Our other divisions include U9 to U18 and U21 (Junior). Hockey West Island has Single Letter as well as competitive Double Letter teams from U11 to U18.
All coaches and managers at HWI are volunteers and give hundreds of hours each season both on and off the ice. In order for each season to be fun and successful for all, parents and families need to be involved, offer positive encouragement, and support the coaching staff and players. Sportsmanship starts in the stands and we ask that parents lead by example.
Get involved. It is very important to attend the start of the year team meeting with coaches.
The age and skill level of the players defines the seasonal plan. Hockey Canada skill-development programs are based on progressive steps and follow the appropriate allocation of time defined in the skill-development pyramid.
For kids aged 4-5-6
The MAHG-Initiation Hockey Timbits Program stands for Méthode d’apprentissage du hockey sur glace. This program designed by Hockey Quebec has been offered in all regions of Quebec since 1976.
Players wear full hockey equipment and practices are 50-minutes long. Players are on the ice 1 to 2 times per week (Saturdays and/or Sundays). Timbits game jerseys and socks are provided.
Goals for the Timbits U7 age division are:
The MAHG program encourages an environment in which children can learn the FUNdamentals of hockey in a safe, fun atmosphere that doesn’t focus on winning. The MAHG program provides an opportunity for players to meet new friends while gaining a firsthand experience in the game of hockey. The volunteer coaches who partake in the Timbits program are encouraged to gain coaching knowledge through coach clinics.
CLICK HERE for the complete Timbits Hockey Canada M7 Program and cross-ice game information.
For kids aged 7-8
U9 builds on the basic hockey skills players learned in U7, but players do NOT have to have taken U7 to join the association. Everyone is welcome! U9 makes sure that the game is a safe and positive experience, introducing, reviewing, or refining basic skills. Players learn and practice:
In U9 players are classed in groups 1-4 and play against other Minor Hockey Associations in our league (Central Hockey League (CHL)) which includes Lakeshore Hockey, Pierrefonds Hockey, and Hockey Dollard des Ormeaux. Practices may be held Friday early evenings, and Saturdays and Sundays as early as 7am. The schedule changes weekly.
CLICK HERE for complete U9 and half-ice game information.
U11 and U13 programs can have Classes A-B-C. U15 and higher usually only have A&B Classes.
Teams in Divisions U11, U13, U15, and U18 play against other Minor Hockey Associations (MHA) in the CHL.
U21 includes players from the age of 18 up to 21 within the calendar year, with a maximum of 4 players of 21 years old permitted per team. HWI only participates in the A-B Classes given that the AA Class is a Provincial league structure. U21 teams play in the Lac St-Louis regional league vs. other Minor Hockey Associations (MHAs) of the Lac St-Louis territory.
Evaluations take place at the beginning of the season to ensure that players are grouped according to their ability and to ensure that the player is placed in the best possible position for success.
Parents can often feel unproductive during tryouts and assessments, which can lead to anxiety, frustration, and other negative reactions. During the evaluation process, it is crucial that coaches and evaluators are given the opportunity to go through their process and that players are removed from any negativity as much as possible. The role of parents during the evaluation process is to be positive and supportive of the player. This materializes by having good habits, having a good routine before the sessions, and helping the player to understand and decode what is happening when he decompresses or prepares. Examples include enforcing good sleep and rest patterns, providing appropriate nutrition to replenish energy and promote recovery, and helping to manage and reduce the player’s stress and frustration which can lead to decreased performance and increased fatigue. All players want to reach the highest levels and parents often want to support them in this effort. The best way to do this is to reinforce a growth mindset, to be the best you can be at any level, and to keep learning how to improve.
Players, parents and coaches who can make the most of their situation, no matter what, will ultimately have the most fun, learn the most, and have the best experience possible. Ultimately, the enjoyment of the sport and the skills a player can build on and off the ice are the most important outcomes of this process. If the parent can support and amplify these concepts, the player will experience the optimal benefit no matter where they are rated or what team level they are selected for.
Hockey West Island uses the TeamSnap sports management service for clubs and leagues. TeamSnap is used to sort players during evaluations, for team and association communications, and for full team practice and game schedules. Members will need a (free) TeamSnap account if you do not already have one. Sign up online and/or download the app on your device.