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Advanced shot reading

Posted by on in Alexander
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First understand that shot reading is really an advanced goaltending skill and probably not something to be attempted until shot stopping becomes an automatic. Although mastery of the skill is generally achieved over time and with experience, one can speed up the process if one makes the effort to understand some of the mechanics of shooting.

Of course, we cannot deal with the slap shot because there really isn't a whole lot of predictability of the shot trajectory based on wind up & body position as the whole process happens so quickly. The same can probably be said of the "snap-shot" except for that distance of the puck from the shooter's body & his/her foot position can give some indication whether the puck will be released to the glove or blocker side.

That being said, let's now review some indicators you can look for to help you read the trajectory of a wrist shot: (these are all based on a left handed shooter & a left hand catching goaltender)

high blocker side = open hips / back shoulder dips
low blocker side = open hips / front shoulder dips

high glove side = closed hips / back shoulder dips
low glove side = closed hips / front shoulder dips.

Don't forget that stick follow through & a shooter's chin position (up or down) can also determine a high or low shot.

As a side note, any time the shooter (left handed) shoots to the glove side (vice-versa for the right hander going to the blocker side) they need to bring their hands across their body so even though their hips are closed their shoulders will open.

Remember, these are just generalities and the really smart shooter will have learned how to disguise his/her shooting movements in an attempt to swing the odds back into his favor. As a last reminder, use every opportunity, including your practices, to improve your shot reading skills and remember, every good read starts with puck focus.




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Guest Monday, 13 July 2020