Reston Raiders Parents and Coaches,
I hope this message finds you well and that the program below might be of interest to your children or players.
Elite Hockey Science (EHS) Reston, LLC is my off-ice micro skills test center located inside SkateQuest
Arena. At the center I train players through a trademarked program called Sequential Training for Elite
Performance (STEP). STEP was created by one of the finest skills coaches in the hockey world, Ron Johnson
BSc. MSc. Biomechanics of Hockey. He is the current in-season/off-season skills coach for NHL stars and US
Olympians Ryan Kesler and Joe Pavelski.
I have personally gone to great length to license the STEP Program from Mr. Johnson and to obtain instructor
certification from his company. I made this venture because his STEP program is rooted in biomechanics and
science. It is probably the most important developmental program for players to learn, especially while they
are still maturing. My goal is to help each player of each Reston Raiders team eliminate his/her poor habits
and supplement them with proper form. All of this can be accomplished off-ice. EHS Reston utilizes a floor
that has a slightly higher coefficient of friction compared to ice. The floor will reveal inconsistencies in
improper stickhandling, passing, and shooting mechanics. Moreover, the slight increase in friction produces
greater fine motor control, allowing for faster neuromuscular connections in the hands and fingers.
At EHS Reston, our instructors teach hockey players of all ages the biomechanics behind proper
stickhandling, passing and shooting. Currently, my center has the capacity to train and develop two hockey
players per 40-minute session. For each session, players are to come prepared to work with their sticks,
gloves and training shoes.
However, a serious commitment put forth by various Reston Raiders teams would allow EHS Reston the
flexibility to expand the center into the vacant party room next door. Such expansion would allow my center
the capacity to train and develop 5-6 Reston Raiders teammates every hour. Ideally, EHS Reston would be
able to work with all the players on a team at least twice per month throughout the season.
Since opening February 17, 2015, EHS Reston has begun to develop over 60 players from the local area
inside the current center. Each player has now learned how to diagnose and fix specific problems that
commonly arise while executing a skill. The STEP program is designed to fix these problems because it
incorporates different commands strings for players to memorize as the levels progress. Training in an
environment where players are encouraged to learn how to fix their own problems on the spot is the only way
to keep young players motivated to practice and improve. The program emphasizes quality over quantity.
Thus, practicing 10 shots with perfect technique is more important than taking 100 shots riddled with
Throughout the course of the season, EHS Reston plans to cover the first 12 fundamental levels of the STEP
program with each player (35 fundamental levels exist). The levels promise to be challenging and to make
you think, but they will also clear-up many of the questions you might have regarding why your children or
players struggle with specific shooting constructs. Upon completion of the 12 fundamental levels of the STEP
program, your children or players will be prepared to adequately execute the basic Snap Shot. It’s important to
understand that there are 17 types of Snap Shots, many of which are quite advanced.
A brief outline of the shooting constructs that STEP will cover with your children or players over the course
of the season are provided below:
• Basic Mechanical Principles of the Wrist Shot, Sweep Shot and Backhand.
• Basic puck control techniques for loading the shot.
• 4 Basic Stance positions.
• Alternative Backhand Techniques such as Backhand Wrist and Backhand Snap.
• Alternative Stickhandling and Puck Management techniques for loading and deception.
• Passing Mechanics
• Slap Shot Mechanics.
• Advanced Mechanical Principles of the Wrist Shot, Sweep and Backhand.
• Advanced Stickhandling and puck control techniques for loading.
• Forehand and Backhand Dekes.