2020-2021 WKMHA Season Plan

Parents and players,

Thank you to everyone who has registered their player for the 2020/21 season and for your patience as we continue to plan for the season ahead. As always, the safety of our players, coaches and parents is our priority and we continue to follow the direction of BC Hockey and ViaSport during the current COVID-19 pandemic.

Hockey will look different in the fall and all age groups from Initiation through Midget will be affected in some way so please keep an open mind and be prepared for a new hockey experience this season. Our plan at this point is focused on skill development and modified area games to develop players.

We are now in Phase 3 from a BC Hockey/ViaSport perspective, which means that the new guidelines address contact activities, cohorts, competitions, high-performance training environments, and travel. For hockey this means:

  • Contact – Physical contact within the same team training environment may be introduced. For the game or competition environment rules should be modified to minimize physical contact. All activities that involve any form of proximity or physical contact should take place only within the cohort environment.
  • Cohort Size – Cohorts may contain up to 50 people or four teams (whichever is deemed most appropriate by BC Hockey)
  • Competition – Competitive activities (e.g. game play) may occur within designated cohorts.

We are meeting with BC Hockey to determine what exactly this means and more details. We will forward more information to parents and players when we know.

We often hear from parents that they want more development, more skills training. The next few months are the perfect opportunity to train and develop skills, in anticipation of playing games later in the season. We are excited to watch our players develop, and we want to provide great value, skills improvement, and fun to all players of all ages right from day one. We know the kids are missing hockey and being with their friends, and we want to provide as much of a ‘normal’ experience as we can.

We’ve outlined some important information below, but please note that this plan can change at any moment if the current COVID-19 situation changes. And please, it’s so important that parents and players follow these facility rules and be respectful towards rink staff — in the words of Dr. Bonnie Henry, “Be Kind. Be Calm. Be Safe.”

If you have any questions, please contact us at:

WKMHA President: Marnie Douglas wkmhapresident@shaw.ca

WKMHA Director of Hockey Operations: Scott Koenig wkmhadirectoroperations@shaw.ca

WKMHA Head Development Coach: James Eccles wkmhacoach@gmail.com

 

Fall 2020

 

Starting Dates (subject to change)

U-7 Evaluation Skate: September 12

U-9 Evaluation Skate: September 17

U-11 Transition Skate: September 8

U-11, U-15, U-18 Evaluations: Mid-September

U-13 Evaluations: September 8

U-15 Body checking sessions: May be planned for a later date

Goaltending Evaluations: September 12

Recreation teams Return to Play: End of September

 

Royal LePage & Jim Lind Arenas

Entering the facility:

  • Players arrive 15 minutes before ice time.
  • Dressing rooms are not available in Jim Lind but are available in Royal LePage to put skates on. Players must come fully dressed to both arenas.
  • Enter through the assigned door
  • Each team will have a COVID Ambassador volunteer at the assigned doors to supervise the group and ensure that unauthorized individuals do not enter the arena.
  • Players must have their owned filled water bottle with their name on it.

 

Exiting the facility:

  • Players will have 15 minutes to exit the facility.
  • Players will leave through the assigned door.

 

On ice structure:

  • Maximum of 20 players and 2 coaches on ice at Jim Lind and 20 players and 4 coaches at Royal LePage.
  • Practices will be minimum of 1 hour in length.
  • Games will be 1 hour to 2 hours in length.
  • Begin local or regional play.
  • Sessions will be geared towards skill development and modified area games while respecting social distancing practices.
  • Benches can be used by players and coaches.
  • Lesson plan direction will be pre-determined by James Eccles the WKMHA Head Development Coach and team coaches.
  • Coaches will be responsible to pick up pucks and equipment at the end of the session.

 

Spectators:

  • 1 spectator will be permitted per player.
  • Must stand or sit in designated area, socially distancing when possible.

 

Ultimate Hockey Centre (UHC)

Entering the facility:

  • Players arrive 10 minutes before ice time.
  • All players must enter dressed in their gear.
  • Dressing rooms, lobby and mezzanine are closed, no parents at this time.
  • WKMHA or Team representative will check in on entry and screen players health.
  • Enter through the assigned door.
  • Players must have their owned filled water bottle with their name on it.

 

Exiting the facility:

  • Players must exit the facility immediately.
  • Players will put their skate guards on and leave through the assigned door.

 

On ice structure:

  • Maximum of 13 players on ice at a time.
  • Maximum of 3 coaches on ice.
  • One bench helper/coach who is required to wear a mask.
  • Ice times will be dependent on facility schedule.
  • Sessions will be geared towards skill development and modified area games while respecting social distancing practices.
  • Bench use dependent on facility restrictions.
  • Lesson plan direction will be pre-determined by James Eccles, the WKMHA Head Development Coach and team coaches.
  • Coaches will be responsible to pick up pucks and equipment at the end of the session. All equipment, water bottles, etc. must be removed from facility after session as a lost & found is not available.
  • Practices will be 55 minutes.
  • All WKMHA volunteers & staff are required to hand sanitize upon entry and exiting & wear masks when not on the ice.

Spectators:

  • No spectators allowed at this time.

 

Phase 4: TBD

Phase 4 will be a return to traditional hockey format with minimal restrictions.

  • Larger group sizes allowed
  • No restrictions on spectators
  • Full contact game play
  • Provincial competition permitted
  • Other process will be outlined at this time

 

 

FAQs

  • Will hockey just be drills and skills this season?

ViaSport announced this week that we are moving to Phase 3 of the Return to Sport Guidelines. It means we may be able to do additional training opportunities, modified games and league play within sport cohorts.

  • What are sport cohorts?

A cohort is a group of participants who primarily interact with each other within the sport environment over a season. When in a cohort, while players do not need to maintain physical distancing during sport specific activities, minimized physical contact is still advised.

Each cohort can be comprised of multiple teams in order to form a mini-league. With the use of cohorts, game play can resume between teams within the cohort.

  • Why does West Kelowna Minor Hockey have so many new rules at our rinks?

The City of West Kelowna, in conjunction with BC Recreation and Parks Association and WorkSafeBC, has determined protocols around facility use such as arenas. West Kelowna Minor Hockey and its members must follow the protocols to use the rinks.

 

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