TRAVEL HOCKEY PROGRAM
The mission of the travel program is to cultivate boys’ and girls’ interest in, and love for, the game of hockey in a structured and competitive environment.
A primary goal is to develop character and self esteem through the lessons of competitive sports: individual improvement, team dynamics, discipline, responsibility, respect and good sportsmanship.
Children mature at different rates both physically and emotionally. With this in mind, the program, on the whole, is designed to foster children’s growth throughout successive playing levels from Mites to Bantams. It is an instructional program, which is designed to encourage each child to develop hockey skills to the best of his/her ability within the context of the competitive nature of Travel Hockey.
Travel Hockey Program Administration
Chair of the Hockey Policy Committee – John Almeida
Members of the Hockey Policy Committee (HPC) are appointed by the President of Club for each upcoming season. The Committee drafts and recommends proposed policies for consideration by NCWC Board of Governors but has no operating decision making authority. Hockey Policy Committee members for the 2014-2015 season are: John Almeida, Katharine Calderwood, Bill Glover, Alicia Hart, Chris Robustelli, and David Tohir.
Director of Hockey Administration–Chris Robustelli
The Director of Hockey Administration reports to the Chairman of the Hockey Policy Committee and shall be responsible for overseeing all administrative aspects of the program, including: finance, registration, scheduling and communications.
Travel Hockey Policy and Procedures
The NCWC Travel Hockey Program will operate and perform within the guidelines of the Connecticut Hockey Conference (CHC) in a manner that preserves the Club’s excellent relations with our league opponents and the referee association. All league tournament requirements and player eligibility rules will be honored. Games with opponents will not be cancelled unless by mutual consent and with the full knowledge and approval of the Winter Club’s Director of Hockey Administration (Chief Scheduler.)
Participants at the Travel level are not permitted to play or practice with non Winter Club teams, (other than school teams), during the period beginning with the NCWC final selection of teams to the end of the CHC season, which includes regional playoffs and other CHC mandated events. With specific permission in writing from the HPC and CHC (which the HPC would coordinate), a player may be allowed to partake in an event or tournament with another team provided it in no way conflicts with any NCWC game and/or practice, does not cause any disruption, and is a unique opportunity and there are no issues in any form with CHC and/or USA Hockey.
2014-2015 Travel Teams
Sanctioned teams for the 2013-2014 season are as follows:
Mite A , A1 & B Birth years 2006 and younger
Squirt A, B Girls, B & C Birth years 2004 and 2005
Pee Wee A & A1 Birth years 2002 and 2003
Bantam A & B Birth years 2000 and 2001
Girls U12 A & B (Ice Cats) Birth years 2002 and 2003
Girls U14 (Ice Cats) Birth years 2000 and 2001
Games vs. Practices
The overall goal of the NCWC’s Travel Hockey Program is to create skilled and disciplined teams that compete in inter-club play under the rules of the Connecticut Hockey Conference (CHC) and in accordance with the Travel Hockey Program mission statement. In order to fulfill this overall goal a balance of games and practices (not to exceed a 1:1 ratio) must be carefully developed to allow for proper player development while providing our players the experience of competing and challenging for various tournament, state and regional titles.
The balance must allow any given travel team the ability to meet the game requirements of the CHC for post-season play, while adhering to the club’s beliefs that individual player development is greatly enhanced through a program that provides dedicated instruction (through well structured practices) covering the fundamentals of hockey. The development of this balance (a proportionate commitment to games and to practices) shall be implemented and monitored by the Director of Hockey Administration.
Player Ice Time
All travel players, regardless of skill level, shall have the opportunity to develop the fundamentals of hockey equally. Travel coaches shall ardently strive to achieve a balance of playing time for all players on their Winter Club travel team over the course of the hockey season. Reasonable inequities in individual playing time during a specific game, state or regional tournament, shall be at the discretion of the coach.
This policy aims to ensure that all of our children have the opportunity to develop to their potential over the course of their Winter Club Travel Hockey experience. All players must have a comparable experience of competing, building confidence, and developing fundamental hockey skills.
Winning is important and NCWC teams will play to win, however, winning should not be the only measure of success. An exclusive focus on “winning” creates a scoreboard mentality and decisions relating to player ice time become dependent on who is winning and by how much. The Club and coaches have adopted a philosophy that allows them to look beyond a single year, even though they may only coach a player for one or two years. Our children are developing throughout their Winter Club experience. The Club and the coaches must recognize this important fact and manage our children’s development accordingly.
The following tournament schedule applies to all NCWC Travel teams. The HPC must approve deviation from this schedule.
1. CanAm/Lake Placid, late October/early November- All teams (except Mites and Squirt C).
2. January/February Tournaments (Marlborough, Providence, etc.)- All teams, with consideration of CHC state tournament dates.
3. CHC State Tournaments (states and regionals) - All qualifying teams.
There will be no Winter Club tournament participation during Holiday/Christmas vacation.
We endorse “B/C” teams in the Travel Hockey Program and recognize “B/C” teams as an important developmental component of the Winter Club Hockey Program. The need/feasibility for “B” teams will be evaluated annually using the following criteria.
1. Determine the number of players at each respective level desirous of playing travel hockey (i.e. the numbers that intend to tryout). This number should be determined to the best of the Hockey Policy Committee’s ability in the Spring preceding tryouts.
2. If the numbers warrant the consideration of a “B/C” team, a decision will be made to determine if a “B/C” team would be competitive and committed.
3. If the above criteria are satisfied, it will be determined whether there is adequate ice time to field the “B/C” team.
4. The membership will be informed of the decision to field a “B/C” team at the earliest possible date.
Quality of Instruction
The NCWC hockey program shall adhere to a philosophy embracing a holistic approach to the Club’s Travel Hockey Program as it relates to player development. This approach involves an active review of skill development criteria such as: the quality of practices, the efficient use of ice time, player ice time, player development, and off-ice use of instructional tools such as videos, chalk-talks, or off-ice shooting clinics as an example.
The HPC is responsible for securing coaches for each travel team and will take every step necessary to attract qualified staff. The goal is for each team to have a Head Coach and two Assistant Coaches. To enhance the development of fundamental hockey skills, the NCWC may utilize hockey knowledgeable community members to support the coaching staff in player development at all levels.
Spring League Hockey
Due to the fact that the NCWC closes at the time when Spring League programs begin it is not the responsibility of the Club to formally sponsor spring league teams. The Club will, however, provide information on such programs.
It is not the affirmative duty of the NCWC to sponsor teams, provide coaching, or pay program fees.
Travel Hockey Procedures
All NCWC members participating in Hockey Programs must register with USA Hockey online and complete the Winter Club Agreement form before being allowed to participate in tryouts/evaluations, etc. Consent to Treat and Medical History forms will also need to be completed once teams are assigned. Forms are available online via the Club website (www.ncwinterclub.com). Registration instructions for alls hockey programs are provided on the main menu page underneath the Hockey (FAQ) tab.
If you have any questions about registration, please email the Registrar at
Coaches Organizational Meeting
The HPC will meet with coaches before the travel tryouts to review broad Program Development objectives for the upcoming season. Coaches will, at times, be provided with reference materials such as a handbook of drills, instructional videos and situational play handouts.
The following guidelines will be adhered to in the selection of all NCWC Travel Hockey Teams,
1. The HPC will select an independent party to oversee all on-ice drills at tryouts.
2. The HPC will ask 2-3 independent evaluators to observe the tryouts and evaluate the players.
3. Head coaches of “A” and “B/C” teams and their respective assistants will evaluate players.
4. A qualified goalie coach, designated by the HPC, will be present at try-outs.
5. Head coaches will select the team after soliciting input from above mentioned evaluators.
6. Prospective teams will be submitted to the HPC to confirm that no outstanding issues need to be discussed.
7. The HPC and Head coaches finalize team selection and inform tryout participants.
8. Participation in the last NCWC tryout demonstrates commitment to the NCWC travel teams. Disregard for this policy will result in appropriate penalty as determined by the NCWC Board of Governors.
Parent Manager Responsibilities
Each team will have a Parent Manager who will assist the coach and work closely with the Director of Hockey Administration. Parent Managers play an important role on the team. Responsibilities include:
1. Be a positive team leader, supportive of the team and coach. Be familiar with policies and procedures outlined in this manual.
2. Distribute team roster, schedule, and carpool schedules via website.
3. Establish team communication network via club website.
4. Send in all game score sheets to CHC.
5. Handle all schedule changes once Director of Hockey Administration has completed the schedule.
6. Communicate necessary information/schedule changes to team and coaches.
7. Communicate schedule changes to Director of Hockey Administration; if a home game is canceled referees must be notified.
8. Pay referees for all home games and scrimmages. Maintain NCWC referee accounting sheet for cash advances obtained from Registrar, Bill Glover.
9. Be familiar with Expense Reimbursement Procedure and distribute Expense Reimbursement Forms as needed.
10. Handle organization of Tournaments, such as Lake Placid, States, etc.
11. Help organize the end of season party/awards celebration.
12. Collect all team jerseys in a timely fashion. Take inventory and store in a labeled box at the Winter Club.
Expense Reimbursement Procedure
Please coordinate with the team manager before incurring any expense to ensure that funds can be allocated in this manner. In order to receive hockey expense reimbursement from the Winter Club, a New Canaan Winter Club Check Request Form must be submitted to the Hockey Treasurer. The Check Request form is available on the website under the Documents tab. Please mail forms to:
89 Comstock Hill Road
New Canaan, CT 06840
Suggestions and Constructive Comments
Suggestions and constructive comments are always welcome. Comments and suggestions should be directed to John Almeida, Chairman of the Hockey Policy Committee, and will be reviewed, considered and given the courtesy of a reply. Suggestions and constructive comments will be kept on file to be used as a reference in drafting future policies and procedures.
The Board of Governors will not tolerate repeated violations or abuse of these policies, rules and regulations as they have been adopted to ensure each member’s hockey experience will be positive, fulfilling, enjoyable and consistent with the traditions of the Club. Failure to adhere to these policies, rules and regulations will result in penalties ranging from reduced playing time and temporary or permanent program suspension to forfeiture of other membership privileges.