Goaltending is all about crease movement, reading the play, and beating passes. To ensure you square each shooter to make the save, you need to beat as many passes and plays.
There is no easier way to do that than with a strong and quick push across the crease. These drills help you improve your capacity to move in and around your crease which can be added to your practices and pre-game routine. Practice these and become unbeatable.
By nailing down techniques within the crease, this will help with simple goalie movements and build muscle memory. Pay close attention to the technique and where you are positioned. Once you are confident in the technique, practice as if it were a real game situation and do so will full intensity. Keep your head up keeping your attention on the play while maintaining focus on your body’s position. Let’s take a closer look at two drills that will help with just that!
DRILL #1: CREASE MOVEMENT – THE SIMPLE V
STEP 1: Start by acting as if there is an opponent player in the corner of the ice. You must make sure to make a quick look over your shoulder to see in front of your crease. When you have a good positioning, t-push to the top of your crease while leading with your stick and blocker first. Make sure to stop with your toes, set your feet and have a proper aggressive position for about 1-2 seconds to face a potential shot.
STEP 2: Imagine the top player you are now facing is making a pass to a player in the opposite corner. Rotate and push to that opposite side post. Don’t forget to take a quick look while you’re in your t-push motion. Repeat drill from the opposite post.
TIP: Get out to the top of the crease in each position. Depth is crucial. Do it 4-5 times each side for conditioning. This exercise can be modified by pushing to different directions of exposure which could bring you in a shorter/longer t-push. Make sure to shift your head forward to create a proper visual line with the puck and transfer your weight on your toes.
DRILL #2: D TO D TO CENTER
STEP 1: Imagine the play is in your zone, the defenseman has the possession of the puck at the top circle on your glove side. Set up in the proper position to the top of your crease in that angle. Once again, your weight is on your toes, your head is shifted forward and you are ready to make the save.
STEP 2: The d-man makes a pass to the opposite d-man’s place at the opposite top circle. You have to use a powerful t-push across the crease by transferring your weight from your glove leg to the blocker leg to push in order to beat that pass on your feet. While pushing, do not forget to take a quick look back from where you are coming from. The play is creating while you are moving, and you need to be aware of where the potential danger and options are. Take the time to place yourself at the top and be aggressive.
STEP 3: Make a quick shuffle to the middle of your crease. When you are square at the top of your crease, you can shuffle back to the blocker side’s top circle position. Repeat the drill from the opposite side.
TIP: Use two pucks back to back like the illustration to make sure you are square at each position.