Learning how to be a roller hockey goalie is similar to playing goal in ice hockey, but there are a few fundamental differences, the most important of which is that there is no ice to slide on. This means that the butterfly style, which entails going down to protect the lower portion of the net, is not as effective of a strategy when learning how to be a roller hockey goalie. The reason for this is that once you are down, you cannot push off from the post, as your pads will not slide as well on the sport court, roll-on, or street surface you're playing on. When learning how to be a roller hockey goalie, you cannot rely on ice-related acrobatics, so here are some tips for combating the disadvantages of not having slick ice below your pads:
- Play the angles. Positioning is key for ice hockey goalies as well, but when learning how to be a roller hockey goalie, it is even more essential, since going down to stop a shot puts you in a stationary position. As players are coming in to take a shot, be sure to come out and cut down the angle, but remain inside the goal crease so as not to be pulled too far out of position in case of a pass.
- Move laterally on your feet. As mentioned before, many ice hockey goalies move laterally by pushing off from the post and sliding on pads in order to move side-to-side. When learning how to be a roller hockey goalie, it is essential to stay on your feet as much as possible, so when you push off from the post, keep your opposite skate upright and on the floor. While one pad drags to protect the bottom of the net, the wheels of the other skate carry you across.
- Practice hand-eye coordination. Since you cannot go down in a butterfly position as often, when blocking the net with your body, it is important that your glove, stick, and blocker be incredibly effective. Work on taking low shots as well as high shots with your catching glove, blocker, and goal stick.
The aforementioned tips will help you when learning how to be a roller hockey goalie. Keep them in mind, and you'll be making the big saves in no time.