Declaration of Safety, Fair Play and Respect
There has been a little confusion and mis-application of these points of emphasis, and we wanted to take the opportunity to hopefully clarify a little and get these videos to you again for your review. This video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JifeJMApfQU does a really good job of breaking it down, take 5 minutes out of your day to watch!
A body check must an attempt to win possession of the puck, and not an effort to punish, intimidate or take advantage of a vulnerable or unsuspecting opponent.
Finishing the check is no longer permitted, after the player has released the puck they are no longer ‘eligible’ to be hit.
The player delivering the body check must do so with their stick on the ice or below the knees and make an effort to play the puck (this does not mean that they have to play the puck first, just that they need to make an effort to play the puck before, during or after the check, they can’t “just hit the guy”)
USA Hockey is committed to creating a safe and fair environment for all participants. Respect for the game, opponents, coaches, and officials is a critical part of that environment and it covers several different aspects of sportsmanship and fair play. This Declaration of Safety, Fair Play and Respect will guide a change in culture as to what is considered to be acceptable/unacceptable body checking and competitive contact at all levels of play.
The Declaration clarifies and updates existing rules/definitions to emphasize the key points to more clearly outline what is deemed acceptable and unacceptable behavior. Below is a video that shows examples of actions deemed “acceptable” and “unacceptable” to help illustrate expected behavior.
We would suggest that when you introduce yourself to the coach prior to the start of the game, that you take the opportunity to ask the coaches if they are familiar with the Points of Emphasis for this season.
A suggested script may look like:
Hello coach, my name is . Have you watched the video on the Points of Emphasis for this season?
YES – Great! Do you have any questions or concerns about what we will be looking at today?
NO?! – Well, you really should take a look it’s a pretty good video that describes what is acceptable and what is not. We’ll do our best to help your players through and explain calls as best we can, but we’re going to need your help here.
The full text and video can be found at: www.usahockey.com/declaration
However, the Michagan Amatuer Hockey Association <www.maha.org/> has put together a shorter version of the video that can be viewed below or via: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JifeJMApfQU