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New to Hockey

Youth Hockey Progression Chart


Prior to learning to play hockey a solid foundation of basic skating skills is essential.  Learning to skate through established courses of instruction is the best and most efficient way to achieve the basic skills.  The Haymarket Iceplex offers a year-round complete range of "Learn to Skate" courses for aspiring hockey players ages 4 to adult.  Information about course content, session schedules, fees and registration is available on their website:


In addition to their Learn to Skate curriculum, the Haymarket Iceplex offers a range of basic hockey skills exposure and acquisition programs that provide an aspiring player the ability determine his/her liking for the game and to learn the basics of play sufficient for moving up seamlessly to the formal House and Travel programs of the Piedmont Hockey Club.  Importantly, programs for the skaters in the 5-9 age range provide on loan essential hockey equipment at no charge and limit exposure to equipment startup costs until the players are sure of their intent to continue.

Information and schedules for all of the programs below are contained on the Haymarket Iceplex website.

TRY HOCKEY FOR FREE (THFF)  is aimed at the young skater ages 4-10 who is curious about the game of hockey and would like to experience the 'feel" prior to committing to formal courses of instruction.   Older players are welcome but hockey equipment for loan may not be available due to size constraints in the Iceplex' inventory.   THFF is not for non-skaters.  A basic ability to skate on ice is essential to the enjoyment of the opportunity.  THFF operates on a two-week  once-per-week basis and is free of fees.

LEARN TO PLAY HOCKEY 1  (AGES 5-9)   LTPH1 is the place for kids ages 5-9 who have determined that hockey is for them and they are serious about learning.  Basic skating skills are mandatory and completion of LTS Hockey 3-4/Tot Hockey 3-4 or equivalent is is a prerequisite.  Player skating proficiency will be evaluated at the first ice time and recommendations for further basic skating training will be provided if required. Session contents include skating skill improvement in hockey-specific areas, becoming comfortable on the ice, stickhandling and puck shooting and mini-scrimmages  The small-group environment fosters learning in a fun environment.  LTPH1 operates in six-week cycles and meets on a twice-per-week basis.  Successful completion of LTPH1 will lead to a transition to the House/Rec program of the Piedmont Hockey Club.

Full details and registration are available on the Haymarket Iceplex website.

LEARN TO PLAY HOCKEY 2 (AGES 5-10)  Designed to focus on enhancement of skills gained in LTPH1, LTPH2 is ideal for skaters who need additional seasoning prior to joining the house program or for those who desire skill refreshment after having spent time away from the ice after completing LTPH1.  LTPH2 generally is scheduled during late July/early August.

LEARN TO PLAY HOCKEY 10-16   For those who have discovered hockey later in life, LTPH 10-16 is designed for tween/teen years players.  It's never too late to learn.  Again, basic ice skating skills are essential.    LTPH 10-16 will advance existing skating skills and provide basic instruction in hockey maneuvering, core hockey skills (puckhandling, shooting, passing, working as a team).  Completion will facilitate ease of integration into the 10U to 18U age categories of house/rec hockey.  For those who wish only to participate in Stick-and-Shoot and/or Pick-Up-Hockey opportunities LTPH 10-16 will supply the skills required for active participation.