2013 Pure Hockey Holiday Gift Guide

Pure Hockey Holiday Gift Guide

Welcome to the 2013 Pure Hockey Holiday Gift Guide! We know how crazy things can get around the holidays, and thought it would be a good idea to help you effortlessly find a gift for every hockey player in your life. In order to simplify things a bit, we went through the hundreds of skates, sticks, gloves and gift ideas on our website and narrowed down each category to a handful of items that are sure to put a smile on anyone’s face. There are great ideas at every price point and performance level, so hit the buttons below to get some ideas!

Bauer X80 SkateSKATES

Graf G35 Supra StickSTICKS

Glove GiftsGLOVES

Hockey Gift IdeasGIFTS

Pure Hockey Training Initiatives

Pure Hockey Product, Fit and In Store Training

Over the past few months, I have had the pleasure of taking the reigns of our hockey product, fit and in-store training program. Getting myself out into our stores has been a great experience. It’s allowing me to see Pure Hockey from a different angle, and work in a hands-on capacity with our frontline employees who work directly with our customers. Communicating with our customers through the blog and social media is one thing, but getting to talk to them and talk to our employees who help and get to know them brings it to the next level.

I really didn’t know what to expect when I first stepped out into the stores. Product training and product knowledge is something all of our employees have gotten in the past, but it has really only occurred in fits and starts, with little true organization. We realized we needed a more formal, even stringent, training program, which is now in place.

Pure Hockey Store Visit Observations

What I found in the store pleasantly surprised me. Did we have some gaps in knowledge? Absolutely. Was there room to improve? There always is. Nobody is perfect, but we always strive for as close to perfection as we can.Pure Hockey Product and Store Training

What I saw were employees who were helpful to customers, polite, conversational and friendly. Many had gone out on their own to learn about products. The ones who hadn’t were still extremely eager to learn. The first few sessions I got great questions, interested employees and many “thank you’s” at the end for taking the time to inform them.

For some background on what we are doing, this round of training focuses on the biggest issues. Customer service is our number one priority. In addition, we also cover best practices for skate service and how to fit equipment properly. Finally, top-notch product knowledge is key, so we have detailed training every time there are major product release.

My number one concern as a trainer for our employees is to make you, our customers feel welcome and attended to in our stores. After meeting a big portion of our staff, I’ve been reassured. It doesn’t mean we can’t get better, but we have a good starting point.

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Hockey gear with two-way protection, a promising trend…

The following is an opinion piece. No research studies were conducted, it is my opinion and I’m just a player who has spent his life in the game and around the gear industry.

There’s a lot of talk about in sports in general nowadays about head injuries and it seems there are many more concussions being reported. In my opinion, it’s a product of a few things. First and foremost, what we know and understand about head injuries in general. The medical community has shown the severity and consequences of concussions, leading players and coaches to take them a lot more seriously and make decisions with far more caution. Gone are the days of getting hit, sniffing the smelling salts and jumping back out for your next shift. This is for good reason – coaches, parents and players are beginning to make smarter decisions regarding concussions.

There are obviously more concussions being diagnosed today, partially because fewer concussions are being ignored and part because there are more occurring. I don’t believe that there used to be fewer and now there are a ton. The truth lies somewhere in the middle. I’m going to totally make up some numbers here, but hey, that’s the beauty of blogs – I get to voice my opinion! If there were 100 concussions that occurred back in the day, I’d guess 30-40% were reported and diagnosed. Today there’s more concussions happening and I’d guess 75-80% of them are reported. To the naked eye, it seems like there’s 3 times as many concussions happening, but I don’t believe it’s as huge as it seems.

In my own opinion, one of the problems is the advances in equipment. There have been some amazing, great advances in protective hockey equipment that have elevated the game. It’s a faster game, players are bigger (see: John Scott, Zdeno Chara, Tyler Myers), they hit harder, skate faster and shoot harder. Players are much more protected than in the days of leather elbow pads, tiny shoulder pads and no helmets, which is great!

The flip side of that coin is that the players are much more protected, which might be a bad thing! The protection level of modern day equipment gives many players a sense of invincibility. The attitude becomes “it doesn’t hurt me, it must not hurt him.” I say this because I believe in my heart of hearts, most hockey players have enough respect for the game and opponents that they don’t look to intentionally injure another player.

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Learn To Play Hockey – Beginner Programs and Packages

Learn To Play Beginner Hockey Programs

Beginner Hockey Programs

Is your youngster ready to play hockey? Hockey is one of the USA’s fastest growing sports and getting started has never been easier. New rinks and facilities are popping up all over the country and advancements in modern technology are improving safety and lowering the cost of equipment.

To continue this trend of growth, many local organizations have begun improving their Learn-To-Play Programs to help eager new players learn the fundamentals of the game while having fun out on the ice. These programs focus on becoming comfortable on the ice, holding the stick properly, and using proper skating technique. These basic skills are crucial as they are the foundation that these players can use to continue to improve their game.

Learn To Skate Beginner Hockey PackageUSA Hockey, the national governing body for the sport, provides a number of resources for parents interested in exploring the options for getting their children started on the ice. At the USA Hockey website you will find information on development camps, learn to skate curriculum and local organizations that arrange Learn To Play Hockey Programs.

To find out more about these beginner hockey programs, visit the USA Hockey Website or view this Learn To Play PDF filled with tips, teaching techniques and general information about the game.

Buying The Right Hockey Equipment For Your Child

At Pure Hockey we understand how crucial the right equipment is to making sure your son or daughter has the perfect introductory experience to the game of hockey, which is why we put together the Pure Hockey Learn to Play Starter Package. Our team of hockey gear experts put together a great selection of beginner hockey gear that is protective and durable that comes in at an extremely reasonable price-point. To make things even better, for a limited time we are offering a pair of free Bauer skates to round out the package. Make sure your youngster get the right start on the ice with the learn to play package at the link below!