Tips and tricks for ripping a cannon-like slapshot
If you’re looking to take your clapper from a rubber-band gun to a howitzer, look no further. Quest Hockey coach Matt Schwartz has got some tips and drills for you on how to take a slapshot.
Slapshots are generally the hardest and fastest shot in any hockey player’s arsenal. But they’re often slow to release and less accurate, compared to snapshots and wrist shots.
Elite players generate incredibly hard and fast slapshots by utilizing the flex of their one-piece carbon fiber sticks; this is accomplished by striking the ice behind the puck. As the player follows through, the carbon-fiber stick snaps back to its original straight design, releasing all the stored energy of the flexed shaft into the blade and through the puck.
Tips on How to Take a Slapshot
The slapshot can be broken down into 4 stages: The wind up; slap of the ice behind the puck; the follow through; and the finish, pointing at the target. Let’s examine the 4 stages of how to take a slapshot more closely.
Wind up: Pull your stick back to roughly shoulder height—in a game, possibly a little higher or lower depending on whether you have more or less time available to wind up. Also, as you follow through, your bottom hand should slide down your stick to a lower position.
Slap the ice behind the puck: Slap or strike the ice a few inches behind the puck with your bottom hand, applying downward pressure into the ice or playing surface to flex your stick.
Follow through weight transfer: With your stick flexed, follow through the puck, transferring your weight from your back to front foot (right to left foot for a right-handed shooter; left to right foot for a left-handed shooter). Be sure to snap your wrist over and through the puck.
Point your stick at the target: As you follow through, it’s important to finish with your stick blade pointing at your target.
Drills to Improve Your Slapshot
- Pause at each stage of the slapshot without a puck: wind up, slap the ice, follow through weight transfer, and point your stick at your target.
- Pause at each stage of the slapshot with a puck: wind up, slap the ice, follow through weight transfer, and point your stick at your target.
- Rip some slapshots.
- Take some slapshots down the line.
Source: Hockey Players Club. Published with permission.
Watch this video on how to take a slapshot:
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