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The art of being a hockey "teacher..." Passion.

Some people may view me as an absolute lunatic talking to myself and that is okay because at least I can say I care about the kind of teacher I am. Being 1,000% transparent I totally forgot I had my camera recording. I typically record a promo for my website and various social media outlets to keep the timeline current at the end of each day for whatever reason today I was COMPLETELY zoned in on what I was doing.

Before I dive too deep you'll hear me refer to myself as a "hockey teacher" instead of a "hockey coach." I believe my classroom is the rink. If you went up to an elementary or middle school academic professional they will say something along the lines of "I'm a 7th-grade social studies teacher" not "I'm a 7th-grade social studies coach." I just think there is a difference between being a coach and being a teacher. A teacher is someone who introduces new ideas and topics to an individual who may have little to no knowledge of hockey to actually comprehend something. I believe in TEACHING the "why, how, and when to use this skill." So if you hear me referring to myself as a teacher this is what I'm talking about.

I believe as a hockey teacher you should have some talent; I've also always been obsessed with improving my own game. I like to show up to my lessons an hour-ish early typically one for the exercise, two to get warmed up (my 23-year-old body doesn't move like a ripe 21-year-old anymore😂), and to practice the skills I am about to teach. I then like to stay past my lessons for maybe about an hour or so to shoot until I blister. I think these things are important because you have to practice what you preach. How the heck can I ask a kid for more if I'm not willing to do the exact same thing? How can I teach a skill that I myself don't try my best to master? These values are important to me, I also could practice hockey all day every day so it's not a chore I like this routine. This leads me to the video I accidentally shot...

Like I said before this video is COMPLETELY raw, I genuinely forgot I had my camera setup. I wanted to share the video even though it's mildly embarrassing because I want kids to understand the passion you need to have, the want, the drive, etc. It should offend you to fail, you should take failing personally. There's nothing wrong with expressing yourself as long as you manifest it into something positive, whatever that is for you find that expression, and don't be afraid to use it. Again, as long as it inspires you and your peers to fight a little bit harder for your goals.

I also wanted to share to kind of show the standard I hold myself to and the types of standards I want my athletes to have. I'm not saying my way is the right way. Heck, when I was editing the video my girlfriend said to me "Why are you yelling? Who are you yelling at?" I simply told her "I'm not yelling at all, I'm just holding myself to a high standard." You have to have standards, but you have to reap what you sew as well.

Finally, families of players new and old I want you to know that I would never tell a kid to do something I wouldn't. I wouldn't put them through something that I don't do myself consistently you can't be a teacher that doesn't expand their knowledge. You can't be a teacher that doesn't keep up with the times. You can't be a teacher that doesn't have the respect of their students and families. Again, you could watch this video and think "Wow this guy is getting on his own case in an empty 5,000 SQFT facility." To that, I say at least I have the courage to hold myself accountable and give a dang about something that means the world to me. Being the absolute best teacher, and mentor of the youth is my number one passion. If I'm not training to create better humans, scholars, athletes then I'm not doing it for the right reasons.

This kind of ended up being a thank you to the people that have believed in Fox Valley Hockey Training so far. Just know it doesn't go unnoticed and I am going to do absolutely everything in my power to help your child become a better human, scholar, athlete.

ABOUT Fox Valley Hockey Training: Fox Valley Hockey Training is an organization that began in 2021 and operates out of its own facility located at 1080 N Perkins St, Appleton, WI 54914. Fox Valley Hockey Training is owned and operated by Blake Hackbarth who has played, coached, and managed hockey programs and facilities all over the USA. Blake Hackbarth's playing career stretched from the high school to junior level where he enjoyed being named captain by his teammates as well as competing in the USPHL National Championships. Blake quickly transitioned to coaching where he got his first taste of coaching varsity hockey for the Neenah/Hortonville/Menasha Varsity Co-Op. Following two seasons behind the bench, Blake took an opportunity as the Program Director for Pro Vision Hockey Academy, as well as Team Tennessee Hockey Club. Blake's last stop before returning to his native Wisconsin was with the Southern Professional Hockey League's Knoxville Ice Bears where he had a variety of tasks within the front office. In addition to Fox Valley Hockey Training Blake also owns and operates a company by the name of Recruitment Hockey dedicated to helping athletes all over the world reach opportunities to play AAA, Prep, Junior, College, and Pro Hockey you can find extra information and philanthropy on Recruitment Hockey here: more information, visit or call (920)810-5250.

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