View Full Version : Anybody using a ball
04-06-2004, 07:10 AM
I used to play inline hockey in the UK but I now live in Denmark where the game is played exclusively with a ball. Also, we play outdoor on concrete/asphalt rinks so a puck would not be an option anyway.
Anybody in here play with a ball? What do you prefer?
<A HREF="http://www.vstarz.dk/" target="_new">www.vstarz.dk</A><P ID="edit"><FONT SIZE=-1><EM>Edited by zentro on 04/06/04 01:11 PM.</EM></FONT></P>
04-06-2004, 11:19 AM
We play both. Indoors we play on wood using IDS pucks. Outdoors we play on asphalt using a ball. We use the gravity balls, or balls that have liquid in them. This limits the amount of bouncing.
I would say that I really don't have a major preference for one or the other.
One tip for playing outdoors with a ball. We were going thru blades at the rate of one a week. After much trial and error, we found that putting a piece of 3/8 inch hard plastic tubing on the bottom, did not effect stick handling or shooting. Cut the tubing to length, then slit the tubing lengthwise and pop on your blade. Add tape to hold the blade. This works because a ball never contacts the bottom of the blade due to it's shape. Now we play with the same blade the whole summer, replacing the plastic tube when necessary. Big savings when you have six of your children playing a lot!
Good thought....ball hockey used to be much more popular over here than it is now, and was the feeder game that fueled the growth of inline hockey.
Since dedicated inline facilities started to crop up all over the USA in the last 10 years, with special flooring designed for inline hockey, the ball game has become much less popular. Now to compete at the large national tournaments, at which the majority are played with a puck, teams feel obliged to play and practice full time with the puck, so they are ready to compete. Switching your game from playing on concrete or asphalt or wood, with a ball, to playing on Sport/Ice/ Spider Court with a puck, is not very easily done without a fair amount of practice.
The stickhandling and grip is so different that it can take almost a full season of practice on the surface you will compete on to get fully adjusted....identify the right wheels, adjust your stopping techniques, learn the slide speed of the puck, develop hand timing, shooting etc..... if you have never played that way, less if you have played both versions.
I would say in general, ball hockey is played almost exclusively as purely a recreational activity, while puck hockey tends to be the version used for organized competitive inline hockey. That said, I believe there may still be a "ball" division at the USARS National Championships.
04-06-2004, 05:29 PM
I have a team that practices on ashphalt and uses a Z-ball and also the Z-puck. This is the only way we can get some practices in unless we plan on driving 1 1/2 hrs. to the nearest rink. This keeps up in shape to play indoor also but it does take alot to change your game from ball, z-puck to ids and indoor. Complete change of wheels and stickhandling ability.
we just recently got a new sport court facility about 1 hour a way..maybe a hair less, but they have no decent program yet, as they are just starting up...just open hockey on Thurs. nights. Otherwise we have been in the same situation for years..nearest inline rink was one and a half hours away.
04-06-2004, 11:19 PM
You are right in the differences between ball and puck. Stick handling is different in that you have to learn to keep yhour stick from rolling over the ball, etc. However, I have found that due to the ball being lighter, my younger children learn to stick handle the ball, drag it, push it to the outside, and get the feel quicker due to it's lightness. Catching passes also seems easier with the ball. They also can obviously lift the ball easier. It is the same reason that we use the lighter blue pucks on our ice rink in the backyard during the winter. It lets someone who is not as strong perform some of the more complicated moves and shots.
Actually I think the AGS ball used for USARS competition may be heavier than the IDS puck. I know my son took a slap shot with one on the back of his gloved hand a few years ago, and it broke his hand through the padding.
Of course not all balls are as heavy as that one. Also helps to have no tape on the stick when playing ball..the stick will not grab and roll over the ball as easily. There are some shooting and passing habits I have seen when coaching kids who learned only with a ball, that take a bit of time to correct when they come to play puck.
04-09-2004, 11:36 AM
Thanks for your replies!
Here in Denmark we only play with a ball - even in the top league. We are part of International Inline Skater Hockey Association (IISHF), og just "skater hockey" which is mainly played in Europe. It's full contact (like ice) and with a ball.
I was wondering about the tubing idea: What happens when you take a slap shot? Doesn't the tubing come off?
EDIT: By the way, we don't play with the zero gravity ball (with liquid inside). We play with a much heavier ball, i.e. 100-120 grammes)
<A HREF="http://www.vstarz.dk/" target="_new">www.vstarz.dk</A><P ID="edit"><FONT SIZE=-1><EM>Edited by zentro on 04/09/04 05:38 PM.</EM></FONT></P>
04-09-2004, 03:24 PM
The tubing does not come off. We use duct tape, placed length wise (so it does not go under the stick) and it holds the tubing on.
04-09-2004, 05:32 PM
Interesting! I must try that out - thanks for the tip :)
<A HREF="http://www.vstarz.dk/" target="_new">www.vstarz.dk</A>
04-09-2004, 11:25 PM
Vesterbro i would like to be able to try and purchase the ball you guys use. I think a heavier ball could help, what is the brandname?
04-12-2004, 07:13 PM
;-) My name is not Vesterbro - that's the name of my team! My sig was probably a bit confusing so I've changed it now.
The ball we are using is the IISHF official ball. It's made by Final and Canpro.
Final (German site): http://www.final-skate.com/products.php?kategorie=accessoires
Canpro (e-commerce site located in Denmark): http://www.skatepro.dk/catalog/product_info.php?currency=EUR&products_id=202&language=en
I don't know if you can get this ball outside Europe but maybe you can email the above sites and ask them.
Team: Vesterbro Starz
<A HREF="http://www.vstarz.dk/" target="_new">www.vstarz.dk</A>
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