Junior Hockey Purpose and Principles

Junior Hockey Purpose and Principles

Purpose and Principles

Canterbury Hockey believes there will be great benefit in providing its community with guidance on what the common purpose of junior hockey is. The intention of this document is to provide clarity of what is most important to junior players at this stage of their hockey journey. We hope that this purpose and underlying principles will guide and influence behaviour to ensure that a quality and appropriate experience is provided to all our junior hockey players.

During a recent junior hockey forum, club and school junior coordinators began the process of establishing a set of core principles for junior hockey within the association. This group of individuals provided great insights to begin the development of the following document, which will set the foundation for the future delivery of junior hockey.

Purpose of junior hockey: To expose young people to a high-quality hockey experience that helps them to foster a lifelong connection to the sport.


We believe the Core Principles that underpin a high-quality junior hockey experience include:

    • We want the hockey experience to be fun and enjoyable for all involved!
    • We want to ensure that all junior participants develop a strong base of core hockey skills and an understanding of basic tactical principles
    • We want to encourage meaningful relationships and friendships that foster a long-term connection to the community
    • We want to support our young people to learn about the importance of and develop their physical, emotional, and psychological well-being

If you would like to view Hockey New Zealand’s principles of community hockey, then please click the following link: HNZ – Hockey Participation Principles

If you would like to view Sport New Zealand’s principles of Balance is Better, then please click the following link: Principles of Balance is Better

Change to Competition Structures

It is important that our competition structures align to the overarching principles of junior hockey. After a review of our current format, Canterbury Hockey proposed two changes to junior clubs/schools to ensure that the competition structures reflected the core values of the junior game.

Why do we need to make change?

 CHA believes that by making these changes, it will:

  1. Ensure our community do not utilise points tables/grade winners as a measure of success
  2. Allow our community to prioritise the core principles without pressure or a focus on results
  3. Create an opportunity for a more fluid draw and meaningful matchups as we are not restricted by a points table/division/round robin
  4. Reduce the time constraints put on CHA staff & club/school volunteers fixing mistakes in results
  5. Removes the risk of Covid-19 impacting the competition structures (e.g., no requirement for catch-up fixtures to complete a full round robin)

Confirmed changes to the 2022 competition structures

 Following collaboration with all our junior clubs and schools, CHA has made the decision to make the following changes to our junior hockey competition structures.

Change #1 – No points tables in ALL junior hockey:

  •  Within all our junior grades (Mini Sticks, Kiwi Sticks, & Kwik Sticks) there will be no points tables.
  • The score will still be recorded by match officials; however, this will not be made public on the website.

Change #2 – No finals in ALL junior hockey:

  •  As their will be no points tables, it also means there will be no finals in all junior grades (Mini Sticks, Kiwi Sticks, & Kwik Sticks).


Canterbury Junior Hockey 2022

The Practical Application


How this will be implemented? (Registrations/Draw Creation)

  • When registering teams, clubs/schools will be required to indicate the band that matches their ability/experience. Please note – these named bands will not be public facing throughout the season, they are simply for the registration process and for creation of the draw during the opening weeks.
  • The purpose of this banding is for clubs/schools to provide Canterbury Hockey with an approximate estimation of their team’s ability/experience when entering the competition to support the scheduling of meaningful matches against like for like opponents in the opening games. As the season progresses, Canterbury Hockey will utilise non-public facing results and club/school feedback to continue to develop the draw.
  • Canterbury Hockey will aim to send a draw that shows multiple rounds in advance so club/school administrators (and parents) can organise weeks in advance.
  • Important to note - as results/feedback is monitored, there can still be weekly manipulation if we believe a team would be more appropriately suited to play a different team.

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