The other day I bought a sheet of plastic for $20 plus $5 shipping.
I wanted a skill pad for practicing handling and shooting off the ice. Why? Playing with a ball or roller hockey puck isn’t quite the same as using a 6 oz ice hockey puck. Also, I’m tired of chewing up my stick blade whenever I want to practice ice.
I know the shooting pads over at places like HockeyShot.com have advantages like a handle cutout and beveled edges so you can “ramp” the puck onto the pad, but I didn’t feel like spending that much money. I’ve heard of other players using a sheet of plastic to simulate the ice, so I headed over to USPlastics.com to see what was available. I settled on a 24″ x 48″ sheet of high-density polyethylene (HDPE) plastic–item #42588.
It arrived yesterday.
I threw a puck on the sheet, grabbed my stick, and messed around for awhile. It worked fine, but I really wanted a frictionless surface as close to ice as possible. I ran to the hardware store and purchased a can of silicone spray lubricant. After applying a light coat, the puck slid much better. I think this pad will do the trick.
I have not used it extensively yet, so I can’t vouch for its durability, but it looks sturdy. I’ll let you know how I like it. Where do you usually go to practice shooting or stick handling?