The SYHA Mite Development Program, based on USA Hockey’s ADM, is centered on skill repetition, small area drills, station work and cross ice games. Practices are designed according to the ability level of the skaters in each group and will concentrate on the individual development of each player above all other interests.
Player development is based on the following beliefs:
- Along with the hockey skills that are being taught, the Mite Development Program is committed to developing the life skills identified in the Philosophy section.
- Participants will be taught the proper way to perform skills. Practice makes permanent, not perfect. By learning to perform skills correctly, players will eliminate the formation of bad habits.
- Muscle memory is developed through repetition. Skills must be practiced repeatedly until performing each skill becomes second nature. The more times players practice the fundamental skills; the more success they will feel which translates into fun.
- Limited “games”. Full-ice game situations are not the best way to develop skills and often end up not being as fun as people hope. Instead, the Mite Development Program will employ various cross-ice and small area games which are shown to develop individual and team skills, promote creativity, increase involvement, and provide more opportunities for players to touch the puck.
The SYHA Mite program will utilize a practice to game ratio of 3:1 once games begin.