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ABUSIVE PARENT DISPUTE RESOLUTION POLICY (HNS)

The Nova Scotia Human Rights Commission and Hockey Nova Scotia have worked collaboratively to find a way of addressing the valid concerns of HNS to curb abusive behaviour of any person involved with HNS while at the same time preserving the ability of children to play hockey despite the actions of parents. After discussions with the Commission and members of the public concerned about this issue, HNS has created a Dispute Resolution Policy.

The full Dispute Resolution Policy is available on both the Hockey Nova Scotia website (www.hockeynovascotia.ca) and on your Association’s website. Please take the time to read and understand the Dispute Resolution Policy since it forms part of the obligations binding the registrants. 

Fair Play Code

Fair Play Code for Parents

  1. I will not force my child to participate in hockey.
    2. I will remember that my child plays hockey for his or her enjoyment, not for mine.
    3. I will encourage my child to play by the rules and to resolve conflicts without resorting to hostility or violence.
    4. I will teach my child that doing one’s best is as important as winning so that my child will never feel defeated by the outcome of a game.
    5. I will make my child feel like a winner every time by offering praise for competing fairly and trying hard.
    6. I will never ridicule or yell at my child for making a mistake or losing a game.
    7. I will remember that children learn best by example. I will applaud good plays/performances by both my child’s team and their opponents.
    8. I will never question the officials’ judgment or honesty in public.
    9. I will support all efforts to remove verbal and physical abuse from children’s hockey games.
    10. I will respect and show appreciation for the volunteer Coaches and
    administrators who give their time to coach and provide hockey for my child.

Fair Play Code for Spectators

  1. I will remember that participants play hockey for their enjoyment. They are not playing to entertain me.
    2. I will not have unrealistic expectations. I will remember that players are not professionals and cannot be judged by professional standards.
    3. I will respect the officials’ decisions and I will encourage participants to do the same.
    4. I will never ridicule a player for making a mistake during a game. I will give positive comments that motivate and encourage continued effort.
    5. I will condemn the use of violence in any form and will express my disapproval in an appropriate manner to coaches and league officials.
    6. I will show respect for my team’s opponents because without them there would be no game.
    7. I will not use bad language, nor will I harass players, coaches, officials or other spectators.

Fair Play Code for Coaches

  1. I will be reasonable when scheduling games and practices, remembering that players have other interests and obligations.
    2. I will teach my players to play fairly and to respect the rules, officials and opponents.
    3. I will ensure that all players get equal instruction, support and playing time.
    4. I will not ridicule or yell at my players for making mistakes or for performing poorly. I will remember that players play to have fun and must be encouraged to have confidence in themselves.
    5. I will make sure that equipment and facilities are safe and match the players’ ages and abilities.
    6. I will remember that participants need a coach they can respect. I will be generous with praise and set a good example.
    7. I will obtain proper training and continue to upgrade my coaching skills.
    8. I will work in cooperation with officials for the benefit of the game.

Fair Play Code for Players

  1. I will play hockey because I want to, not just because others or coaches want me to.
    2. I will play by the rules of hockey, and in the spirit of the game.
    3. I will control my temper – fighting and “mouthing off” can spoil the activity for everybody.
    4. I will respect my opponents.
    5. I will do my best to be a true team player.
    6. I will remember that winning isn’t everything – that having fun, improving skills, making friends and doing my best are also important.
    7. I will acknowledge all good plays/performances – those of my team and of my opponents.
    8. I will remember that coaches and officials are there to help me. I will accept their decisions and show them respect.

Fair Play Code for Officials

  1. I will make sure that every player has a reasonable opportunity to perform to the best of his or her ability, within the limits of the rules.
    2. I will avoid or put an end to any situation that threatens the safety of the players.
    3. I will maintain a healthy atmosphere and environment for competition.
    4. I will not permit the intimidation of any player either by word or by action. I will not tolerate unacceptable conduct toward myself, other officials, players or spectators.
    5. I will be consistent and objective in calling all infractions, regardless of my personal feelings toward a team or individual player.
    6. I will handle all conflicts firmly but with dignity.
    7. I accept my role as a teacher and role model for fair play, especially with young participants.
    8. I will be open to discussion and contact with the players before and after the game.
    9. I will remain open to constructive criticism and show respect and consideration for different points of view.
    10. I will obtain proper training and continue to upgrade my officiating skills.
    11. I will work in cooperation with coaches for the benefit of the game.

Fair Play Code for League Organizers

1. I will do my best to see that all players are given the same chance to participate, regardless of gender, ability, ethnic background or race.
2. I will absolutely discourage, any sport program from becoming primarily an entertainment for the spectator.
3. I will make sure that all equipment and facilities are safe and match the athletes’ ages and abilities.
4. I will make sure that the age and maturing level of the participants are considered in program development, rule enforcement and scheduling.
5. I will remember that play is done for its own sake and make sure that winning is kept in proper perspective.
6. I will distribute the fair play codes to spectators, coaches, athletes, officials, parents and media.
7. I will make sure that coaches and officials are capable of promoting fair play as well as the development of good technical skills and I will encourage them to become certified. 

Mandatory Respect in Sport Parent Program
Mandatory Respect in Sport Parent Program

– Effective 2012, ALL PARENTS (one from each household) of IP and Novice aged players must take the Respect in Sport Parent Program at their cost ($12).
– If the parent program is not complete by Dec. 1st, their child will be ineligible to participate in HNS sanctioned programs.
– Effective 2013, ALL PARENTS of newly registered players with Hockey Nova Scotia regardless of level must take the Respect in Sport Parent Program.

Refer to the Respect in Sport icon under Risk Management on the Hockey Nova Scotia webpage for further information and how to register for this program.

Coaching Tools

SCMHA GAME SHEET LABELS   DOWNLOAD HERE

  1. You will need to purchase 4in x 2in white mailing labels. You can get packages of 250 from Staples for around $10.
  2. Download template and fill in your team information.
  3. Print
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Medical Forms  – DOWNLOAD HERE

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Parents Letter Example   – DOWNLOAD HERE

All Volunteers at all levels

All volunteers at all levels – Regardless of position as coach, assistant coach, trainer or manager registered with any minor hockey team or association must complete the HNS screening process of Criminal Records and Child Abuse Registry checks. Criminal Records and Child abuse Registry checks must be resubmitted every 3 years.
 
All volunteers at all levels – Regardless of position as coach, assistant coach, trainer or manager registered with any minor hockey team or association must complete the Speakout course or take the Respect in Sport online course as well as the Return to Play online course. 
 
Coach Certification, What do I need?
 
Initiation Program U7 – All on-ice instructors/coaches/assistants must complete the Intro Coach program along with the Risk Management screening and course above.
 
U9 – All on-ice instructors/coaches/assistants at all Novice levels, Development, Intermediate and advancing, must complete the Intro Coach program along with the Risk Management screening and course above.
 
U11, U13, U15, U18 House – All on-ice instructors/coaches/assistants must complete the Intro Coach program along with the Risk Management screening and course above and at least one bench staff must have the Hockey Canada Safety Program (HCSP).

U11, U13, U15, U18 AAA, AA, A, and U15B – All Coaches/Assistants/On Ice Instructors must complete the NCCP Development Stream A level clinic, the Hockey Canada Safety Program (HCSP), along with the Risk Management screening and course above.
 
U11, U13, U15, U18 AAA, AA, A, B, C – All trainers, non-ice bench personnel must complete the Hockey Canada Safety Program (HCSP), along with the Risk Management screening and course above. This personnel are not permitted to go on the ice to instruct or assist with practice unless they have the appropriate coach certification.
 
Special Circumstances

All volunteers at all levels – Regardless of position as coach, assistant coach, on ice instructor, trainer, or manager registered with any minor hockey team or association must complete the Risk management requirements by December 1stof the year they start their involvement.
 
All Coaches/Assistants/On Ice Instructors – Requiring NCCP Coach and HCSP certification must take one of the two courses in their first year of involvement. It is recommended that coaches take the NCCP certification first, however, at least one member of the coaching staff must have the NCCP certification if all coaches are in their first year.
 
There are no exceptions to the certification requirements and it is the responsibility of the coach and his/her Minor Hockey Association to ensure all requirements are met.

Questions? Contact Charla Strang

charla.strang@gmail.com

Games and Practice: Warmup Exercises

Before you begin any training program or competition, it is important to make sure that you have properly warmed up. This will ensure that your body is ready for whatever you are going to put it through. A proper warm-up will also help to prevent injury and help you to begin focusing on the task at hand.

CHARACTERISTICS OF A GOOD WARM UP

– Always utilize your entire body when performing your warm-up. Do not limit it to a specific area of your body only.
– Warming up must comprise movements related to the game situations that lie ahead. This improves and sharpens nerve innervations.
– Warming up exercises should be done systematically/slowly, they should not be the quick/jerky type.
– Do not hold breath when exercising, but inhale and exhale deeply.
After a long trip (ie. Drive to an out of town tournament), a good warm-up is essential. This helps to stretch the muscle, and maintain the flexibility of various muscle joints.

The benefits of warming up are in 3 areas:

1. Physical Changes:
– The player’s neuro-muscular coordination improves. Hockey is played with a stick, and it is essential for you to have good neuro-muscular coordination, in order to perform at higher level.
– Muscles/joints are fine-tuned and the joint flexibility/mobility increases – injury is minimized.
– Stretching and loosening effect in skeleton muscles. Muscular function is accelerated according to the needs of the game.
2. Psychological Changes:
– Confidence level increases – You can easily overcome anxiety/tension/pressure before the game.
– Warming up creates a constructive outlet for your negative feelings.
3. Physiological Changes:
– Through a good warm up, the efficiency of muscular contraction increases to its optimum. The speed of contraction may be increased approximately 20% by raising the body temperature.
– The physiological benefits of raising muscle temperature through proper warm up, prior to the actual game include:
– Reduced muscle viscosity
– Increased rate of chemical synthesis of contraction and recovery
– Improvement in blood circulation

Standard Warm-up Exercises
If you are in an area that has enough room, and you have enough time, to do a proper Warm-up, then it is preferable. The Warm-up should last approximately 15 to 20 Minutes. It should start off slowly and progress from there. The Warm-up should try to mimic the types of movements that an athlete will be doing in the upcoming activity.

High Knee Walks
High Knee Walks are a great warm up and stretching exercise to help stretch the lower extremities. Maybe more importantly it helps to teach the joints and associated musculature to increase the range of motion. This will obviously help to improve stride length that in turn will help improve speed.
When performing the high knee walk it is important to keep your head up, back straight and slowly and intentionally pull your leg up to your chest as you walk. Lower the leg to the ground as you step forward and then pull the other leg up to your chest. Be sure to pull the leg up to your chest as high as possible and DO NOT lower your chest to your leg.

Long Strides
This is a great dynamic warm-up for the hips and more importantly the hip flexors. It is important to make sure the hip flexors are long and elastic to ensure your stride is long and powerful.
To perform the long stride start in a standing position and simply step out in an exaggerated stride and lower your hips to the floor. You should feel a stretch in the groin/hip flexor area. Make sure your knee does not pass the toes and make sure to keep your head up and back straight. Bring the back foot back to the front and return to the standing position and repeat as you step out with the other foot.

Butt Kicks
This is a great dynamic warm-up for the hips, quads and hip flexors. Simply begin running in a forward direction. Back straight, head up and upper extremities working as normal. With each step you will kick your butt with your heel. Perform this very quickly kicking your butt and then lowering it as quickly as possible. Perform in sets of 10-15 yards.

Straight Leg Toe Touches
Straight leg toe touches are a great way to stretch the hamstrings/buttocks in a dynamic way. It will also help increase stride length by teaching the joints and associated musculature to increase the hip range of motion. It is important when performing the exercise to make sure your back is straight. Also make sure the lower extremities are warm prior to performing this exercise. You can do this by performing other dynamic stretches first or by lightly jogging for a few minutes.

Backward High Knee Walk/Long Stride
Start off facing backwards. As in the high knee walk you will want to bring your knee to your chest.The leg should be slightly bent when extended and you should try to touch your opposite hand to the toes. (right hand touches left foot). Try to keep the opposite leg straight with minimal bend. Keep head up as well. Lower the foot to the ground and then step out with your other foot. Each time you should be taking a step forward.

Lateral Strides
This is a great functional warm up for the groin muscles. Now instead of simply placing it on the ground you will perform a long stride backwards. It is important that you take a wide base to help you keep your balance. Move back up to the standing position bringing your front leg backwards. Then repeat with the opposite leg.
Start in the standing position with your knees slightly bent. Hips and shoulders are square and facing directly forward. Keeping your toes straight ahead and maintaining the bent knee position step out to the side. You should feel a stretch in the groin area. Bring your following foot in to midline and step out again. Make sure you perform the exercise in both directions facing the same way.

Questions?

Contact Charla Strang

charla.strang@gmail.com

Concussion info

The following information is from Hockey Canada: 

Because of the contact nature of the game and the speed with which it is played, the brain is vulnerable to injury. Trauma may occur through direct contact to the head or face or indirectly through a whiplash effect. Injuries to the brain are characterized by an altered state of consciousness. It is the altered state of consciousness that is the key thing to look for with any head injury.

NOTE: Children are more sensitive to the effects of a concussion and may need to have a longer period of rest prior to returning to activity and the sport.

A concussion is a common injury, but since they cannot be detected on x-rays or CT scans, they have been difficult to fully investigate and understand. Fortunately, there have been many important advances in our knowledge of concussions, including how to identify, manage, and recover from a concussion. Although concussions are often referred to as ‘mild traumatic head injuries’ and often resolve uneventfully, ALL concussions have the potential for serious and long-lasting symptoms and so must be treated carefully and in consultation with a physician.

What causes a concussion?

Concussions are brain injuries caused by the impact of the brain with the inside of the skull. The impact causes damage that changes how brain cells function, leading to symptoms that can be physical (headaches, dizziness), cognitive (problems remembering or concentrating), or emotional (feeling depressed). A concussion can result from a blow to the head or body in any number of activities including sports. The following link takes you to the Think First website: www.thinkfirst.ca

Symptoms?

Headache
Dizziness
Feeling dazed
Seeing stars
Sensitivity to light
Ringing in ears
Tiredness
Nausea, vomiting
Irritability
Confusion, disorientation

SIGNS?

Poor balance or coordination
Slow or slurred speech
Poor concentration
Delayed responses to questions
Vacant stare
Decreased playing ability
Unusual emotions, personality change,
and inappropriate behaviour
 

How can a concussion be prevented?

Never check to the head
Hockey Canada adopted a new penalty for the 2002-03 season that is enforced at all levels of play within hockey in Canada. The penalty is checking to the head, and it was hoped that the enforcement of this rule would address and lead to the reduction of concussions in hockey at all levels of play within Hockey Canada.

Never hit from behind
Beginning with the 1985-86 season, Hockey Canada introduced a rule to eliminate checking from behind.  With the implementation of rules, prevention and awareness Hockey Canada will continue to decrease the number of concussions in the game. But it takes more than this, it takes cooperation from all involved including parents to continue to enforce respect and safety in the game.

Caution: All players should consult a physician when a concussion is suspected. Coaches, trainers/safety people, players and parents should
not attempt to treat a concussion without a physician’s involvement.

The return to play process is gradual, and begins after a doctor has given the player clearance to return to activity. If any symptoms/signs return during this process, the player must be re-evaluated by a physician. No return to play if any symptoms or signs persist. Remember, symptoms may return later that day or the next, not necessarily when exercising.

Never return to play if symptoms persist.

PREVENTION TIPS:

For players:
•Make sure your helmet fits snugly and that the strap is fastened
•Get a custom fitted mouth guard
•Respect other players
•No hits to the head
•No hits from behind

Coach/Trainer/Safety Person/Referee:
•Eliminate all checks to the head
•Eliminate all hits from behind
•Recognize symptoms and signs of concussion
•Inform and educate players about the risks of concussion

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