Calling all Canadians

Tjodalv

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This has been a topic I've been curious about for quite some time, and due to recent drunken thoughts about the effects of this topic on scheming in football, I have to ask: why do Canadians train hockey players to use their non-dominant hand in the opposite way as the rest of the world?

To clarify: I'm discussing hand dominance as traditionally defined -- what hand do you write with, which is kind of aligned with your dominant eye (look that one up), and other neural pathways.

CA goalies glove hand is their dominant hand. CA skaters tend to be "lefty" because their dominant hand (right hand) is at the butt of the stick. That is completely opposite of the rest of the hockey playing -- or generally existing -- world. You don't see batters, or cricketers (terminology?) taking swings with their non-dominant hand leading.

Anyone have insights?

On a personal note, I find this fascinating because I play several instruments, and depending on which I'm playing one hand becomes relatively more useless than the other in certain respects (when playing guitar my left hand is fine, when I transition to a keyboard instrument it's less useful).
 
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Raskolnikov

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This has been a topic I've been curious about for quite some time, and due to recent drunken thoughts about the effects of this topic on scheming in football, I have to ask: why do Canadians train hockey players to use their non-dominant hand in the opposite way as the rest of the world?

To clarify: I'm discussing hand dominance as traditionally defined -- what hand do you write with, which is king of aligned with your dominant eye (look that one up), and other neural pathways.

CA goalies glove hand is their dominant hand. CA skaters tend to be "lefty" because their dominant hand (right hand) is at the butt of the stick. That is completely opposite of the rest of the hockey playing -- or generally existing -- world. You don't see batters, or cricketers (terminology?) taking swings with their non-dominant hand leading.

Anyone have insights?

On a personal note, I find this fascinating because I play several instruments, and depending on which I'm playing one hand becomes relatively more useless than the other in certain respects (when playing guitar my left hand is fine, when I transition to a keyboard instrument it's less useful).
I can tell you many fathers in soccer and baseball and basketball attempt to make their kids lefty for a sports advantage.

If you are lefty you are 10% of the population, but more valuable at 39% of hockey "skater" positions. This advantage is more pronounced than some other sports (baseball is another exception), and Canadiens are more aware of this being their national sport.

I don't think its a great idea, as lefties naturally have more anomalous dominance stemming from an enlarged corpus colosseum, and can pick up tasks with either hand, but natural righties are more locked into a dominant hand. For whatever reason men on my fathers side tend to be lefty/ambidextrous so I do weird shit like play ping pong right handed, but throw left handed and paid attention to that stuff in sports and psychology.
 

Tjodalv

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That's the thing though, it isn't an "advantage" play in hockey; they just, traditionally, teach their kids to have their dominant hand on the butt of the stick, and I just don't get it.
 

hawkinmontreal

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This has been a topic I've been curious about for quite some time, and due to recent drunken thoughts about the effects of this topic on scheming in football, I have to ask: why do Canadians train hockey players to use their non-dominant hand in the opposite way as the rest of the world?

To clarify: I'm discussing hand dominance as traditionally defined -- what hand do you write with, which is kind of aligned with your dominant eye (look that one up), and other neural pathways.

CA goalies glove hand is their dominant hand. CA skaters tend to be "lefty" because their dominant hand (right hand) is at the butt of the stick. That is completely opposite of the rest of the hockey playing -- or generally existing -- world. You don't see batters, or cricketers (terminology?) taking swings with their non-dominant hand leading.

Anyone have insights?

On a personal note, I find this fascinating because I play several instruments, and depending on which I'm playing one hand becomes relatively more useless than the other in certain respects (when playing guitar my left hand is fine, when I transition to a keyboard instrument it's less useful).
To clarify a few things, I am right handed, I have played hockey until I reached the semi pro level and no one in my hockey career ever said otherwise. If I shoot right, my shoulders and body move to the right as well, therefore my left hand would be at the buttend of the stick. When you stick handle and shoot thats all determined by your dominate hand which is lower down on your stick for control and strength. It would be extremely awkward if my left hand was lower down on the stick and my right hand on the butthead, I would be shooting to the left when I should be shooting to the right.
I can tell you in all the years I have played hockey I have never heard of a coach teaching us what you are trying to explain. Wayne Gretzky was right handed but played with a left stick and there are many more that have that versatility, but this is not taught to us.
 
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dbldrew

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That's the thing though, it isn't an "advantage" play in hockey; they just, traditionally, teach their kids to have their dominant hand on the butt of the stick, and I just don't get it.
im not Canadian but I always played and use a lefty stick because when you stretch your stick out one handed to block shots steal pucks etc you are using your stronger hand to control the stick
 

ruprecht

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Interesting thought. As a lefty myself who played for many years I was never coached to be as such. Not to say it doesn't happen. Pretty sure as a very small kid I was taught to write with my right hand rather than my left tho
 

Tater

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I'm right handed and always played as a righty. Same with guitar. Playing hockey or guitar left handed would be impossibly awkward.
 

Tjodalv

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im not Canadian but I always played and use a lefty stick because when you stretch your stick out one handed to block shots steal pucks etc you are using your stronger hand to control the stick

I get the "strong poke check" argument, I just could never shoot properly with my off hand.
 

Raskolnikov

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count how many lefty sticks the Blackhawks employ and then tell me again there is no advantage.

Panarin was perfect pairing with Kane because he had a left hand blast.
 

hawkinmontreal

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I'm right handed and always played as a righty. Same with guitar. Playing hockey or guitar left handed would be impossibly awkward.
Exactly tater, I was going to refer to guitar playing as well, I can’t play left handed either, very awkward. I am more confused with the idea that the poster refers to this awkwardness as something Canadians are taught, which it is not.
 

hawkinmontreal

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count how many lefty sticks the Blackhawks employ and then tell me again there is no advantage.

Panarin was perfect pairing with Kane because he had a left hand blast.
That’s incorrect, Panarin was a left winger who shot right handed. By doing so he has a direct shot on the inside. His one timers from Kane who played right wing were feasible as such, Dcat also shots right but sets up on the left for one timers.
 

Diehardfan

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I played 15 years and was never once coached as to which way I shoot. I do everything right handed....write, swing a golf club, throw....everything but shoot a hockey puck. I have no idea why it worked out that way but it did. Was certainly not coached into doing it. I'm American, btw....I don't think I've ever heard of Canadien players being coached to shoot one way or the other. I intelligently did not play goalie very much but when I did, my catching hand was my left. Probably from playing baseball.....you throw right and your glove is on the left, just felt natural to me. I was so bad in net I might as well have put the catching glove on my foot.
 

dbldrew

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I get the "strong poke check" argument, I just could never shoot properly with my off hand.
Yeah there is no logical way to describe it but me shooting a puck lefty feels as natural as when i swing a golf club righty.

When I was a kid i picked lefty because of the one hand control and just learned that way to shoot.
 

Vanken

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I'm a Canadian, a natural lefty, shoot left, and have never been coached, asked, or have suggested to me which way to hold a hockey stick. Nor have I heard of others doing anything different. As kids, we just pick up a stick and use it the way that feels natural. I am old enough to have had a straight blade when I first started hockey so it's not like I saw a left curved stick and started shooting left with it. Some of my friends were right-handed but shoot left, too, and some are right-handed and shoot right. No plan to it at all.
 

Tater

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I can only play golf, swing a bat, play guitar, write, shoot a puck... as a righty. You guys can mix and match between stuff?
 

Granada

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Gretzky playing with a left stick reminds me of how Hendrix played a right-handed guitar with his left hand (i.e. upside down). That still blows my mind.

I always assumed the dominant hand was low on the stick in order to better control the puck, and that's what ultimately decides. When I was young (for street games), I'd actually use a left-handed stick, but I naturally transitioned to righty as I got into my teens -- this was not just in hockey, but in many things, pool (cue) and guitar, in particular. I always wrote and shot a basketball righty, but to this day, I still deal cards, open jars, etc. lefty.
 

LordKOTL

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...

To clarify: I'm discussing hand dominance as traditionally defined -- what hand do you write with, which is kind of aligned with your dominant eye (look that one up), and other neural pathways.

...
I can state with certainty that there are exceptions to this rule. I'm right-handed/right-footed, but I'm left-eye dominant.
Gretzky playing with a left stick reminds me of how Hendrix played a right-handed guitar with his left hand (i.e. upside down). That still blows my mind.

...
My bro is a lefty and plays a righty guitar upside-down. I think it's just what you get used to--he learned upside-down.
 

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