Article #2 - The Stance/Set Position
The Stance is the most important position for todays goaltenders to develop elite movements and saves. The position is the foundation for all movements that a goalie would use in a hockey game , with proper stance goalies can execute great lateral saves , butterfly pushes , shuffles, t-pushes, and challenge position. A relaxed stance... knees bent , gloves in front of body, chest slightly forward... provides a well balanced position which will allow the goaltender to make any type of movement with confidence.
Key Fundamentals needed in Stance
- Stick 4- 8 inches in front of skates
- Feet shoulder width apart
- Goalie on balls of feet
- Knees bent/flexed for power/mobility(sitting in a chair)
- Glove open , bent at elbow slightly in front of body at waist level
- Stick blade should be totally on ice , if correct lie (size)
- Relaxed Flexed position for easy flow /balance into saves
- chest slightly bent forward in comfortable position
A goalie with an excellent Stance and skating ability such as Ed Belfour of the Toronto Maple Leafs can be in position at all times to stop the puck , they never seem to be out of position and always have a chance to stop the shot . This type of goaltending is a result of great angles, stance , and skating ability . They make the save look easy because they are in great position to stop the shot at every different situation e.g. 2 on 1's , breakaways, screens/deflections , wraparounds and force the shooter to make the perfect shot to beat them or end up missing the net as a result of great positioning by the goalie.