Ice Hockey Rules and Regulations for Beginners

 Kevin Brown

What You Need to Know About the Rules of Ice Hockey

Ice hockey was born in the 19th century in Canada when the hockey game was played on the ice. Today, ice hockey is one of the powerful and fast moving sport in the world and is played in the Olympics. Ice hockey is specifically popular in countries with sufficiently cold weather for natural ice to be present. The countries that actively play and participate in Ice hockey are Canada, the United States of America, Finland, the Czech Republic, Russia, Sweden, and Slovakia.

Rules of the Ice Hockey Game

In ice hockey, you have to hit a small puck with hockey stick across the ice and try to hit it into a goal. The team gets a point each time puck makes it into the goal. The puck is passed around between the team members on ice while the players from the opposite team try and prevent them from scoring. The winner is the team that scores the maximum number of goals.

The ice hockey game is played on an ice rink with dimensions, 61m length and 30m width. The ice rink is divided into 3 sections namely, neutral zone, attacking zone and defending the zone. The neutral zone is the middle section of the ground which houses a center circle where the game starts. Attacking and defending zone are on both sides of the neutral zone. There are two end zone faceoff circles and spots in attacking zone as well as defending the zone. Goal crease is a half circle surrounding the goal.

There are two ice hockey teams in a game and each team has a maximum of 20 players. Out of the 20 players, only 6 players are on the ice at a time. Rests of the players are substitutes and they can be put into the ice hockey game whenever required. In the team of 6 players, one is a goaltender and other 5 are outfield players. The goaltender has to take and maintain a fixed position in their half and should never cross the center red line. Other 5 players initially take positions but are free to move around once the game of ice hockey is started.

Every player will have a hockey stick and ice skates. Along with the uniform, they are required to wear a face mask, shoulder pads, helmet, arm guards, padded shorts and gloves.

“Puck” used in the ice hockey game is a solid object made out of dense rubber and weights around 6 ounces. During the game, players hit the puck with hockey sticks and it is even acceptable if its hit by the foot but it is strictly not acceptable if any player touches the puck with hand except for the goaltender. This is one of the most important ice hockey rules that every hockey player should remember.

During an entire ice hockey game, there are 3 games, each with 20 minute periods.

Ice Hockey Scoring

A goal is scored when a player hits the puck over the goal line. It is important the whole puck crosses the line in order to score. In NHL league ice hockey game, there is a sensor present in goal line which identifies whether or not the puck has crossed the line.

Winner In Ice Hockey Game

Winner ice hockey team is the one that scores more goals than the opposite team. In case of the tie, an additional quarter is played in the game until one of the teams score. During this additional quarter, the first team to score is the winning team.

Basic Ice Hockey Rules

The ice hockey game starts with a face off in the center circle. During face off, two opposing players stand opposite to each other at some specific distance and referee drops the puck between them. As soon as the puck is dropped, both players try to gain the possession of the puck.

According to ice hockey rules, players can use physical force to win the puck from their opponent but there are certain limitations to body checks. Physical contact from side and front is allowed and the player can be penalized for intentional checking from behind.

Tripping opponents, forcing opposite players physically to hit rink walls, elbowing, high use of stick and to check an opponent with a shaft of the stick can earn your penalty.

For the minor penalty, the player is sent off the ice for two minutes and their team continues to play with 5 players in that duration. In case of a major penalty, player is sent off the rink permanently.

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