BMSA Initiation Guidelines

Bruderheim Minor Sports Association Initiation Program



The Bruderheim Minor Sports Association (BMSA) has agreed to implement an initiation program that follows Hockey Canada’s LTPD (long term player development) model and adheres to the principles in the Hockey Alberta Initiation Hockey Operational Guide. 

The emphasis of the Initiation Program is on fun and skill development.  The Initiation program also allows participants to experience fitness, fair play, and cooperation.


All participants in the Initiation Program will be registered with Hockey Canada as one "team" regardless of the number of participants registered following the Hockey Alberta regulations;

General Regulations 1.3 o) "Hockey Team'' or "Team" means a group of persons comprised of: (E) For Teams within the Division of Initiation, there is no maximum number of players;

Minor Hockey 3.7 Number of Players on a Hockey Team (a) All Hockey Teams may register at one time a maximum of nineteen (19) Players. Of those nineteen (19), 2 must be goaltenders. Exception: Teams within the Division of Initiation


All initiation aged players will be placed in groups of 4-6 depending on their skill.  These groups are flexible.  As players will develop at different rates, re-evaluation of the groups will be necessary throughout the season.  Groups will rotate through stations designed to give proper skill progression based on the ability of the group.


The Initiation Program will primarily use the curriculum in the Hockey Canada Initiation Skills Manual. This curriculum will be used as a guideline, as adaptations will be necessary in order to suit the skill level of the current initiation participants.  Periodic skill evaluations will be necessary to ensure that each group is working on the appropriate section of the curriculum based on their skills.


A variety of small area games will be played during practice times.  (ie. British bulldog, Asteroids, scrimmage, etc.)  A one day tournament will also be facilitated by BMSA as part of the Initiation Program.  The initiation team may organize exhibition games or participate in other associations hockey tournaments provided the following rules are adhered to;

  1. No games are to be scheduled before December 15
  2. After December 15, 3 of every 4 scheduled Bruderheim ice times should remain practices in order to provide adequate time to complete the curriculum. (ie. every second Saturday ice time should remain a practice). 
  3. The main focus of games must remain skill development for all participants, teams are not to be coached to win.
  4. Games are to be ½ ice or cross ice. Rink dividers are preferred, however, pylons may be used to divide the ice.  If pylons are used, additional coaches may be required on ice to shoot the puck back in to play.
  5. Every effort should be made to schedule games against teams with similar skill levels. If it is found the skill level of the team being played is significantly different, other options may be explored with the opposing team.  Things like reducing the number of players on the ice for one team (5 on 4, 5 on 3), trading of several players for the duration of the game, ensuring players of similar skill level are on the ice at the same time, or other options to encourage fair competition should be used.
  6. Games will follow modified rules (note: these are the rules that must be followed for all home games. However, it is understood that away games may follow slightly different formats depending on the association being visited.  Games with associations following drastically different formats are discouraged);
    1. No offsides
    2. No icings
    3. No penalties
    4. No statistics. Score is not to be put on the scoreboard or filled on a game sheet. Buzzers may be used for line changes, however, it is preferable for an on ice instructor to keep track of time and blow a whistle for line changes.
    5. Players must rotate through all positions including goalie
    6. No goalie equipment is to be used
    7. Blue 4 oz pucks are to be used


The Initiation Program will have one primary head instructor overseeing the on-ice sessions.  They are responsible for evaluating the skill level of participants and placing them in appropriate skill based groups.  They are also to provide the on-ice instructors with the practice schedule that will be used at each session.  They are ultimately responsible for ensuring the Initiation Program guidelines are followed. 

Additional on-ice instructors will assist the head instructor with delivering the curriculum to the participants.  They are to help ensure the practice schedule is respected.  They will provide feedback to the participants and the parents of the participants.  They will help co-ordinate the orderly entrance and exit from the ice surface by the participants and ensure all equipment is brought onto and removed from the ice surface and put away.

Every effort will be made to ensure as many instructors as possible have completed the Coach 1 clinic.  A minimum of 1 coach for every 10 participants must have this course completed.  Information on supplemental coach stream clinics to help instructors will be provided by BMSA.

As a bare minimum, all initiation instructors and on ice helpers must have their Respect in Sport - Activity Leader course completed by November 15 of the current season as per Hockey Alberta rules and regulations.  Instructors must also have a criminal record check on file with BMSA completed within the previous three years.  One team official for every ten participants must also have completed the Hockey Canada Safety Program.

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