Could You Stop an NHL Slap Shot?

Hockey Goalie in Front of Goal

It’s July and hockey season is just around the corner…so it is time to start thinking about your preseason training.  Every goalie’s dream is to have the chance to stop an NHL slapshot from the point.  So do you think you could do it?

Let’s go back to physics class and figure it out.

Let’s say you have an average NHL defenseman with an 85mph slapshop, shooting at you from the blueline, about 55 feet away.  It will take that slap shot 430 milliseconds to reach you. 

In those 430 milliseconds you need to do the following:

  1. Locate and focus on the the shot. 
  2. Determine the speed, distance and direction of the puck.
  3. Process this information in your brain and make a decision on what you will do.
  4. React.

Could you do all that?   Perhaps, if your reaction time is fast enough. 

What if you could improve your reaction time?

Studies show that reaction time can be measured and trained in as little as 5 weeks.  If you would like to improve your reaction time, call us to book a sports vision evaluation and training session.

Dry Eye Can Reduce Your Performance

dry eye

Recently, an elite target shooter came in 2 days before Provincials complaining of trouble keeping her focus on the target.  The problem – dry eyes.  A few days of treatment and she was noticing significantly more stable vision, allowing her to win her class.

 When talking about sports vision we first address clear vision, but equally important is stable vision.  The eye is designed to have a tear film coating the cornea which protects the cornea and also provide a clear optical surface.  If the tear film evaporates or is disrupted the vision will fog and the delicate corneal epithelial cells can be damaged. 

Treatments for dry eye are growing and we have many more options for diagnose and treatment.

How to Develop Your Soccer Skills

My son is in 10 year old soccer and is a victim of change.  His youth soccer program has adopted a new format for his age group.  Last year, when he was nine, he played on a larger 9vs9 field.  This year at 10 he is now playing on the smaller 6vs6 field. 

As occurs with any change, I have heard grumbling from parents that this a step backward and I must admit, at first, I felt the same.  After watching the additional touches this smaller format provides, my mind is changed.  The smaller 6vs6 format allows more ball touches and increased skill.    It requires faster reaction time, better vision and more skill.

Daniel Coyle , author of The Talent Code, has a great summary of the use of the sport Futsol, played in Europe and Brazil, that takes advantage of a small format game to develop soccer skills.


Mandatory Visors in NHL

The NHLPA voted to approve mandatory visors in the NHL.   A great choice in protecting vision.  Read the full story here.

For those skeptics,  9 out of 10 of the top NHL scorers in 2011 wore a visor.  Read the story and see a photo library of the injuries here.

NHL Scouting Combine tests Hand-Eye Coordination

svt training


101 NHL hopefuls are gathered in New Jersey for the NHL Scouting Combine.  The Combine involves a series of physical tests and examinations that are used to give prospective teams one last look before the NHL Draft later this summer.  One test that has been included in the combine since 2009 is a test of hand-eye coordination.  Studies show that regardless of the sport hand-eye coordination is superior in elite atheletes.  Studies also show that a 5 week vision training program can improve your hand-eye coordination.

Dr. Michael Nelson, Sports Vision Optometrist