Why Goalies Need to Think Like A Sniper

Self-assessments are a great starting point to recognizing what your strengths and weaknesses are as a goalie. It’s one thing if a coach helps to identify what areas of the game you excel at and what areas you need to further develop. But, it’s something entirely different when you look in the mirror (so to speak) and do it to yourself.

For one, it increases your level of engagement and awareness about yourself as an athlete. And it’s not just about what you do on the ice. This brings me to the second benefit of a self-assessment. A good self-assessment can address everything away from the rink from how you eat, sleep, and prepare for games, practices and goalie training sessions, to how you manage your emotions when you’re team is winning, when the game is tied, when you’re losing, and everything in between.

I recently came across an article about Chicago Cubs first baseman Anthony Rizzo and the journey he recently went through to become an upper echelon athlete. A few paragraphs stood out to me and got me thinking about self-assessments from a goalie’s perspective.

The following paragraphs describe the benefits of a self-assessment and the outcomes from going through the process.

"You have to have the player evaluate himself," said Sveum, The Kansas CIty Royals hitting coach now credited with helping that homegrown core become World Series Champions. "Go on the BATS machine: 'Look, how would you pitch yourself?'

"Learn from that. Obvioulsy, Rizzo made some huge adjustments. Even that first year I was there, he lowered his hands and he lowered his swing path.

"But he was able to do it. Hey, you suggest a lot of things to people and they can't do it. So you have to give credit."

He saw all his tendencies, his holes, his strengths, his weaknesses," Borzello said. "A lot of hitters always wonder: 'How is this team going to attack me?' But it's more than that: Why are they going to attck you that way?'

"I can show you the way, I can show you why a team would do this, because this is what I would do to you. I showed him what options I have to get ahead. I showed him what options I have to finish him. I showed him where I'm going to stay away from."

Don’t just think of a self-assessment from your perspective, as a goalie. To really expand your perspective, you have to think differently and maybe even think in a way you may not have fully considered before.