This fall’s hockey season could look very different than in years past due to COVID-19.
Despite the uncertainty around minor hockey, Infinite Ice’s holistic hockey program has approval to return to Terrace for a second year.
“We’re so grateful and we are really excited to come back up,” said Infinite Ice co-founder James McEwan. “When we got the word that we could come back and the ice was going to be in we were so thrilled.”
The program was founded and guided by professional hockey coach Josh McEwan and his brother James McEwan. Infinite Ice has been in contact with city officials to make sure the program is in alignment with COVID-19 protocols. The 2020 edition is for players aged seven to 17 and is set to take place between Aug. 24 to 29.
According to McEwan, there will be a limited number of spectators allowed to watch and players will only be on the ice in groups of 12 to 18 players. Physical distancing will be enforced in dressing rooms and there will be appropriate sanitization.
The two brothers, who have both grown up in Terrace playing hockey, and their co-partner Jens Kieling decided to start the program after realizing there aren’t many opportunities in the Northwest for players to pursue hockey at an advanced level.
They wanted to offer alternative training that not only focused on technique but included meditation and yoga to help players become more complete.
McEwan said that those types of activities are important for life in general, regardless of what a player’s hockey ambitions are.
“It’s really important that we empower our players to build up their immunity, how to build up their immune system with the right nutrition, the right lifestyle and then also how to handle stress,” he said.
“Personally in my own experience, that has transformed my life.”
Last year was the program’s debut in Terrace. Around 50 players signed up for the program. McEwan expects higher enrolment this year, even with players split into smaller groups.
“One thing that we are speaking a lot about is how to get opportunity from challenges and we’ve all gone through challenges in these recent times so now, really going with that theme to break through.”