Probably the most neglected aspect of goaltending when it comes to team practices and what we term at Smarter Goalie as “designated training”. Coaches will tell us we take hundreds of shots on their goalies in practice.
Now we do applaud the effort, but in retrospect, these are all random shots. Every shooter attacks the net wanting to bury the biscuit with no regard to whether this is helping their goaltender.
The coach has not considered the time related between each shooter, forcing the goalie into circumstances again not designed to any kind of systematic approach to development.
As educators we understand random shooting has its place and can be very revealing when it comes to understanding a goalies strengths and weaknesses.
But, if the discovery of these strengths and weaknesses is not the function of the activity then what is the ultimate purpose other than fun, perhaps.
Having a designated format can and should be incorporated into practice time when the focus is on goaltending development. It’s time for teams, organizations and federations to move forward.