Cognitive Preparation: The 5 Minute Mini Game
Making the jump from minor hockey to junior hockey can be difficult. Moving up in leagues and receiving shots from stronger and advanced players can be intimidating. Whether it is junior hockey or minor hockey the 5 Minute Mini Game can be a useful tool to provide a positive head in the game.
When I was playing my first year in junior hockey my coach at the time came up to me on my very first game and shared this tool and it resonated with me throughout my whole hockey career. He said “break the game down into 5 minute mini games.”
When breaking the game down into 5 minute segments you are able to shake off the bad and build on the good parts of each mini game. When you have a bad 5 minutes, let’s say you let a goal in, once that 5 minutes is over you move forward and leave it in the past. This will get you back into your rhythm and keep you head in the game after a goal or misplay. Alternatively, when you have stopped everything within that 5 minute segment you feel confident and build on that to the next mini game.
When implementing this in your game, remember it is important that once the 5 minutes is up you move on to the next until the 60 minutes is done.