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"New to Hockey? Here's what you need to know"

When does the season start and when does it end? 

Players tend to hit the ice in late August or September for evaluations, start practices in October and the season wraps up in March.


What does Team Placement look like for New Players? 

  • U7 Placement: At the U7 level, team placement is simple and not classified as a tryout. Players born in 2018 or with previous hockey experience are typically placed on Advanced teams. Players born in 2019 or new to hockey/skating are placed on Beginner teams.
  • U9 and Above: SMHA offers four levels of play in U9, U11, U13, and U15 to accommodate all abilities and experience levels. New players are recommended to have some skating experience if starting at U11, U13, or U15.

What is the time commitment?

The time commitment varies by age and increases as children get older. Additionally, it is influenced by the ice times assigned by the Saskatoon Minor Hockey Association. Generally, it will look like this:

  • U7 
    • 1 Hour Ice Times  - 2 Ice Times per Week
    • No Games prior to December 1, 2024 (Hockey SK Mandate) 
  • U9
    • 1 Hour Ice Times - 2-3 Ice Times per Week
    • No Games prior to November 15, 2024 (Hockey SK Mandate) 
  • U13
    • 1.15 Hour Ice Times - 2-3 Times per Week
    • No Games prior to November 15, 2024 (Hockey SK Mandate) 

What are the costs associated with playing hockey? 

  • Registration Fee: The annual registration fee is to the zone and covers all tryout and pre-season ice times, league games, practices, provincial playoff games (if applicable), league playoff games (U13 and older), referee fees, Hockey Canada insurance and Hockey Saskatchewan / Hockey Canada Registration fees.
  • Team Fees: Besides registration fees, families are usually responsible for team fees. Each team will have a pre-season parent meeting to set a budget for extra ice time, team photos, jackets, tournament fees, coach gifts, etc. Some teams may choose to fundraise instead of charging fees, depending on the decision made at the first parent meeting. Typically, teams use a combination of fees and fundraising.

What does Team Placement look like for New Players? 

  • U7 Placement: At the U7 level, team placement is simple and not classified as a tryout. Players born in 2018 or with previous hockey experience are typically placed on Advanced teams. Players born in 2019 or new to hockey/skating are placed on Beginner teams.
  • U9 and Above: SMHA offers four levels of play in U9, U11, U13, and U15 to accommodate all abilities and experience levels. New players are recommended to have some skating experience if starting at U11, U13, or U15.

What Equipment is Needed to Play Hockey?

To play hockey, your child will need the following equipment:

  • CSA Approved Hockey Helmet & Mask
  • BNQ Approved Neck Guard
  • Shoulder Pads
  • Elbow Pads
  • Gloves
  • Hockey Pants
  • Shin Guards
  • Hockey Socks
  • Jock or Jill Shorts
  • Hockey Stick
  • Equipment Bag
  • Skates
  • Practice Jersey

When selecting equipment, keep in mind three important factors:

  1. Good Condition: Ensure the equipment is in good condition, without any damage or excessive wear.
  2. Proper Maintenance: Regularly maintain the equipment to keep it in safe and effective working order.
  3. Proper Fit: Make sure all equipment fits your child properly to provide the best protection and comfort.

Using second-hand or "hand-me-down" equipment can save money, but be sure to carefully inspect these items for safety and proper fit. Plan a budget for purchasing equipment, but remember that the most expensive gear is not always the best. Focus on safety, fit, and comfort.


What is required from a new parent joining hockey for the first time? 

Each family usually helps out during the season to keep things running smoothly. Volunteering makes the experience more enjoyable. Examples of volunteering roles:

  • Timekeeper or scorekeeper for games
  • Team manager
  • Coaches
  • Team treasurer
  • Fundraising