Getting your legs in shape for hockey can be a daunting task, but it’s a necessary one if you want to perform at your best on the ice. Hockey is a sport that demands a lot from your legs, so it’s essential to train them properly.

In this article, I will discuss some tips on how to get your legs in shape for hockey and not only keep up with your competition, but surpass them!

Understanding the Importance of Leg Training for Hockey

As mentioned earlier, hockey is a sport that requires a lot from your legs. From skating straight ahead, backwards, starts and stops, and turning, your legs are constantly in motion when you’re playing hockey. Therefore, it’s crucial to have strong legs that can withstand the demands of the game.

When it comes to leg training for hockey, you want to focus on building strength, power, explosiveness, and muscular endurance. This means incorporating exercises that target your lower body muscles, such as your quadriceps, hamstrings, glutes, and calves. Some effective exercises for leg training include Goblet Squats, Lunges, Trap Bar Deadlifts, and Romanian Deadlifts. As well plyometrics plays a huge role in regards to power and explosiveness.

Many of these exercises fall into a category I like to call the Boring Basics.

What are the Boring Basics?

Well, they are a collection of exercises and movement patterns that create a foundation for which all future success can be built.

These exercises aren’t flashy, they aren’t going to get you on Instagram, but they will turn you into a Beast!

Exercises like the already mentioned Goblets Squats, Trap Bar Deadlifts, Chin Ups, Standing Row, Push Ups, Bench Press are great examples of the Boring Basics.

Months and years of perfecting and progressing the weight used in these exercises will set the foundation for future improvements in single leg exercises, power, agility, and explosiveness that will set you apart from your competition.

Hockey player performing a leg strengthening exercise.

Tips for Getting Your Legs in Shape for Hockey

  1. Start with a Warm-up

Before you begin any leg training exercises, it’s essential to start with a warm-up. This can be a light jog, jumping jacks, or any other form of dynamic warm up that gets your blood flowing and increases the temperature. A proper warm-up can help lessen the chance of injuries, help improve performance, and prepare your muscles for the workout ahead.

  1. Focus on Compound Exercises

Compound exercises are exercises that work multiple muscle groups at once. These exercises are great for building overall strength and power in your legs. Examples of compound exercises as mentioned above include squats, lunges, and deadlifts.

These exercises are also perfect for the eventual integration of single leg exercises which not only mimic the sport of hockey, they also carryover to other sports by increasing athleticism as well as improving everyday function.

  1. Incorporate Plyometrics

Plyometrics are explosive exercises that help improve your power and explosiveness on the ice. Examples of plyometric exercises include box jumps, jump squats, and lunge jumps. This improvement in explosiveness is what helps create space between you and your opponent as well as win the short races to the puck.

  1. Don’t Forget About Endurance

In addition to building strength and power, it’s important to have muscular endurance in your legs. This means incorporating exercises that challenge your cardiovascular system, such as interval training and Sprint repeats.

  1. Rest and Recover

Finally, it’s important to give your legs time to rest and recover after a workout. This means taking a day or two off between workouts and incorporating rest days into your training schedule.

The training is what breaks down your muscle tissue, the recovery is what builds it back up stronger than it was before.


Getting your legs in shape for hockey requires dedication and hard work, but the rewards are well worth it. By incorporating the tips outlined in this article, you can improve your leg strength, power, explosiveness, and endurance, and ultimately perform better on the ice.