Skates, helmets and tournaments – oh my, it must hockey season! Between driving your hockey superstar to endless practices, organizing fundraisers and maintaining equipment, there’s no denying that being a hockey parent is a busy – and rewarding – job. The team camaraderie is infectious and seeing your little one’s determination on the ice is priceless.
Here are some ways to prepare for hockey season’s worst, to ensure it’s the best:
1) Develop a routine: Because the hockey season is so busy, establishing a scheduled routine is key. This includes making time for homework between school and practice, ensuring the hockey bag is packed ahead of time and coordinating carpool schedules. Pro tip: create a check-list for your child to follow so they can learn to manage their own time and ensure they’re well prepared to hit the ice.
2) Banish smelly gear: It’s always surprising how such a big smell can come from a small kid! Hockey equipment is bound to collect sweat when your kid is skating their heart off on the ice so make sure you stop odors before they start. First, air out all equipment after each use. Do not – I repeat, do not – leave everything in a zipped up hockey bag! Second, regularly wash items that can be machine washed. Pro tip: Use a detergent that’s up to the challenge such as OxiCleanTM HD Liquid Laundry Detergent and Arm & HammerTM Plus OxiCleanTM Cold Water Power Paks – they are my go-to favourites!
3) Maintain a positive attitude: The number one goal (pun intended!) for your child during hockey season should be to have fun. Whether it’s a “win” or “lose” in the end, each game teaches your child how to work as a team and participate in friendly competition. These important life values are the true prize at the end of the season!
4) Get to know your fellow hockey parents: Creating a network of other parents can add a fun social element to the experience for you. Plus, it’s a great way to stay connected and easily be able to coordinate carpools and call-in a last minute favour if you can’t make a practice.
5) Make some memories: Your before hockey advice and after hockey breakfast runs are the stuff memories are made of. Pro Tip: Create a pre or post hockey tradition for you and your son or daughter to share!
This piece is sponsored by Church & Dwight. Emily Smith is a 2016 Ambassador for Church & Dwight.