View Full Version : We Need Junior Roller Hockey
09-24-2009, 04:25 PM
We know there is junior leagues in ice hockey like the OHL. Why not have a junior roller hockey league for kids 12-18. The reason i bring this up is because players that are 16 that come up to the AIHL usually aren't ready to play with players bigger and older than them. I think it would be fun for kids to have a major competitive roller league what do you think?
09-24-2009, 04:36 PM
I actually brought this up in another topic about how it would be a great thing. They were discussing what the age minimum should be for the AIHL. I think a Junior League in roller hockey would be a fantastic idea. I think competition would attract players. When choosing sports or activities as a teenager a lot of kids aren't choosing roller hockey because for most of the year theres not that many places with competition besides for the great events like Narch, Torhs, and AAU. Most rinks just don't have that great of 14u, 16u, and 18u divisions, and thats why most kids would rather play ice or another sport. I think a competitive league For players ranging from ages 14-18, close to what junior ice ages are, would be a very good thing for the sport. Someone just has to make it happen, and soon.
09-24-2009, 04:45 PM
If I had money and was older since im young I would defiently do it.
09-24-2009, 04:49 PM
but it all comes back to grassroots...
you have to start a kid playing roller at a younger age to keep this "junior" league from becoming a beginners league.
to be honest, it's hard enough keeping the "Elite" leagues together for more then a couple of years, so I think it would be next to impossible to keep a nationwide junior league running.
Now, don't get me wrong, it's actually a really good idea, but there is zero marketing at any level of our sport so the finances just aren't and won't be there until the business end of the sport/leagues are looked at.
Instead of adding new teams every year, shouldn't the marketing aspect of the league(s) be looked at?
09-24-2009, 04:58 PM
I agree with the points Growl brought up. I honestly think that the amount of teams in say the AIHL is a catch-22. I can think of a few times in sports history where expansion diluted the talent pool. I think this may not be the case for talent, but exposure and protecting the quality of the product presented comes to mind. I think a jr league, if run properly, could help prop up the future of pro roller hockey.
09-24-2009, 06:17 PM
Wouldnt it be smarter if they created a junior league in the northeast or in any region and expanded based on the results thats what i would do.
09-24-2009, 06:24 PM
Why not have a junior roller hockey league for kids 12-18.... I think it would be fun for kids to have a major competitive roller league what do you think?
Consider if you will the impact of creating a Junior program onto the existing Scholastic programs that would then compete for players of the same age groups. Some markets have good-and-growing middle school programs (12-14) that then feed into the high school programs (15-18), and eventually into the Collegiate ranks. Most of these players ONLY play for their school clubs and not elsewhere. Adding yet another level of competition or tournament play would further partition talent and dollars with, arguably, negative effects.
The High School ranks have been a solid proving ground for producing talent and keeping kids interested in this sport since the early '90's. They'll continue to grow so long as we keep planting the grass seeds and giving kids of all talent levels a place to play and compete with their peers.
I'll not get on my soap box for too long, but if you want a stronger sport then kick-start your Scholastic Hockey programs!
09-24-2009, 06:34 PM
Im pretty sure a regional based youth league will happen soon.
Our Jr program has been in and out of talks for something like this for a while.
Currently they are playing in the summer and fall in a league in the Hudson valley New York.
Our Jr program does the local tourneys and some national events but the Kids wanted a weekly travel league. This summer we piloted it with the HVRHL
Kids loved it.
We also have one of our age groups play a 15 min game between our FireAnts elite/pro games at every home game. They either play the JR team of the visitors or a local ice hockey program comes down with their kids to try inline. Not only does it promote the youth teams...it brings in the fans!
Click on the HVRHL link for info.
09-24-2009, 10:29 PM
I think it would be extremly hard for a inline junior league to compete against junior ice hockey. I think we would have to build a youth league first and then as those kids get older start to consider a junior age league.
I know that the Capital Clubhouse is currently working on rebuilding their youth league (the previous manager did everything she could to run the league into the ground). To the best of my knowledge there are NO youth teams in Maryland so it woulld be near impossible to build a junior program. I think it woulld be far more likely to push for a scholastic league.
09-25-2009, 12:36 AM
I would love to agree with the topic but I still beleive the things we need to concentrate on are strengthening what we already have and bridging the gaps first
We have AIHL, PIHA and whatever else for 16 or 18 and up for elite levels
We have NCRHA which is extremely successful
We have NARCh, State Wars and others that are the best competetive tournament levels and the foundation for competetive hockey in our sport
Where we need to bridge is at the high school level - there are too many successful leagues that need to get things together and form the same foundation and bring it to a national level...Jay runs an awesome league, IHF out in Cali...Ian Mackie has a great program in MO, and I can go on further on the east coast from Marple to VA and everywhere else in between
Again going back to Bill -- It needs to be grass roots...show these kids from age 6 or 8 or whenever they start that there is the tourney level...high school...college....elite leagues - if we dont show them...we lost them at the word GO!!
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