Life happens, it develops like a breakout and evolves as the game flows. We have ups and down, struggles and successes. During my time as the strength and conditioning coach at the Banff Hockey Academy I had some great moments with some awesome mentors and developed lifelong friends. I grew as a person, coach and player. Being around the game 24-7 for 5-years does that. I was the athletic trainer for over 350 hockey games at the Midget AAA & Junior level, was on the ice for 800+ practices, traveled over 70,000kms and conducted more than 2760 hours of dryland training with up to 50 players in the program. In our spare time the coaching staff watched a lot of hockey (in person and on TV), worked with local minor hockey teams, and ran hockey schools in North Vancouver. After road trips or games the coaches would assemble at Tommy’s local pub to have a drink while talking hockey.
In Banff I started to write my book, DRYLAND with the urging of my hockey players and built a number of inventions I will someday turn into products for my website. I launched my website DP Hockey while at the academy, and even met my wife in Banff.
It has been years since I have moved away from Banff and it took a long time not think of it as home. I do remember the people who helped shape my life such as Billy Doherty, Oly Hicks, Murray McIntosh, Steffany Hanlen, Richard Monette, George Korotva, Kurtis Jones, Adam Culligan, Tracy Booth and Garry Unger. I took some very valuable lessons and experiences away from the game, as well as developing as a coach with a great group of players who were always willing to go the extra mile in training and off the ice.
The point of this blog post is to say it’s important to cherish the time you have during different times in your life. You will have highs and lows, and every situation may not be the best or go exactly as planned. What happens though is that these experiences prepare you for your next adventure, job, business, or relationship as it builds your knowledge base and wisdom. Just as the BHA helped me become the coach I am today, there will be teams you’re on, coaches you play for and teammates who help to shape and mold the future you.