Ice Hockey at 37.

Ted Hamilton

Helmet Painter / Racer
Well, another item on my bucket list checked off, and the most fun night I've had a long time...

When I lived in Upstate NY I worked at an ice arena for a while. And my best friend played youth hockey from age 6-7 through high school. I always wanted to, but parents lacked the money or ambition to get up at 4 am... So I went to games and cheered and learned to skate pretty well.

When college rolled around, I played inline street hockey and some rink inline hockey, but it's not the same as ice...

So, when I found a local adult development league here in Winston-Salem last week while looking for a skate sharpener, I signed up. Tonight was the 2nd week, but my first night. There were 11 of us on the ice, and it was an absolute blast!!

My fitness level is "mediocre". I ran a marathon 2 years ago, but I quit running after that and we had a baby a year ago so I have done precisely ZERO running since until the beginning of last week when I rejoined the local YMCA. I was a bit nervous about how it'd go.

The locker room was friendly, and a mix of backgrounds and locales... some fellow Darn Yankees and some locals, some with skating experience, some with none.

We warmed up a bit, did 10-15 min. of skating drills, 5-10 min. of stick skills training, then a controlled scrimmage... i'm in the upper 10% of skating ability, and my inline experience and "northern hockey genetics" gave me a sense of what I SHOULD do.....accomplishing it was another thing altogether. I managed 1 assist, 1 goal, 0 wipeouts and 100% fun! And I only felt like throwing up 5-6 times. :) Probably because I'm an 'all out' skater -- I can't stand being lazy on the ice, except when my body refuses to go anymore. With 6 v 5 there's no line-changing either.....hehe.

A few things are clear:

- I've never sweat that much in my life....ever. A gear dryer is in my future from PVC and a fan....
- I'll be going back next week for sure!!
- You're never to old to try something new....but don't forget that:
- Your ability to bounce is inversely proportional to your age, so keep the skate side down.

Any other rec hockey players here, esp. ones that started later? Here in the South we're a fringe sport, for sure....but those 'Canes are pretty good this year! I'll wear white, black, and red, but I'll keep bleeding Black and Yellow - go Pens...

a good friend of mine , is 52 years young :) he is on the ice 2 times a week in his Ice Hockey league . playing with guys half his age and loves it . he talks hockey at work , and i talk racing . It works out ! LOL he said he would tell me when he is ready to try karting