What is Making Stridz Athlete Development?

Making Stridz Athlete Development is the newest sport science company in Edmonton, Alberta. Making Stridz is dedicated to improving the growth and development of athletes of all ages and skill levels. Through the use of Dartfish Video Analysis Software athletes are able to use visual feedback as a method of improving their technique. Making Stridz also does game play analysis for a variety of sports allowing coaches to see an entire game broken down into smaller components.

download.pngClick here to download Dartviewer. This will allow you to access the Dartfish project which has been produced for you by Making Stridz Athlete Development.

download.pngClick here to view a sample project created by Making Stridz Athlete Development for the Hockey Canada Skills Academy Conference



February 1, 2017

Elite Skating and Skill Development Camps - Summer 2017

Lloydminster - July 3rd - 7th, 2017

• Power Skating (Technique and Power)
• Video Analysis and Athlete Testing
• Game Specific Skating
Dates: July 4th - 8th (Atom - Junior Groups Available)
• Group 1: 1:00 - 2:00 PM
• Group 2: 2:15 - 3:15 PM
• Group 3: 4:30 - 5:30 PM
Location: Servus Place, Lloydminster, AB
Cost: $300 (Group Sizes of 8 Skaters)
Registrations Are Due by June 1st, 2017

Edmonton – July and August 2017

Edmonton - July 11th – 21st , 2017

• Power Skating (Technique and Power)
• Video Analysis and Athlete Testing
• Game Specific Skating
Dates: July 11th – 21st (Bantam - Junior Groups Available)
• Group 1: 8:30 – 9:30 AM (July 11, 12, 13, 14, 18, 19, 20, 21)
• Group 2: 9:45 - 10:45 AM (July 11, 12, 13, 14, 18, 19, 20, 21)
Location: Terwilleger Recreation Center – Edmonton, Alberta
Cost: $450 (Group Sizes of 8-10 Skaters)
Registrations Due by June 15th, 2017

Edmonton – August 8th – 18th, 2017

• Power Skating (Technique and Power)
• Video Analysis and Athlete Testing
• Game Specific Skating
Dates: Aug 8th – 19th (Bantam - Junior Groups Available)
• Group 1: 8:30 – 9:30 AM (Aug 8, 9, 10, 11, 15, 16, 17, 18)
• Group 2: 9:45 – 10:45 AM (Aug 8, 9, 10, 11, 15, 16, 17, 18)
• Week 1 Terwilleger Recreation Center – Edmonton, Alberta
• Week 2 The Meadows Recreation Center – Edmonton, Alberta
Cost: $450 (Group Sizes of 8-10 Skaters)
Registrations Due by July 1st, 2016

*** Edmonton Camps Only – Register for Both Camps and Receive $100 off the Full Registration Fee

Leduc – Aug 7th – 11th, 2017

• Power Skating (Technique and Power)
• Video Analysis and Athlete Testing
• Game Specific Skating
Dates: Aug 7th – 11th (Novice - Midget Groups Available)
• Group 1: 6:45 – 7:45 PM
• Group 2: 8:00 - 9:00 PM
• Group 3: 9:15 - 10:15 PM
Location: Leduc Recreation Center
Cost: $300 (Group Sizes of 8-10 Skaters)
Registrations Due by July 1st, 2017

If you don't see a camp which fits your schedule contact as about organizing small group ice sessions in your area!

Act fast as group sizes are limited and spots fill up fast!!

November 9, 2015

Developing a powerful and efficient skating stride involves a lot of components including edges, balance, power, strength, technique, etc. but we find that improving a players edges can make a huge difference in improving their stride. The key to doing effective edge work drills is to keep it interesting and challenging for the players skill level.

At a younger age, we try to focus on maintaining and building speed while doing our edge work. If you watch players doing basic inside and outside edge drills (ie. half circle on the right inside edge, half circle on the left inside edge and repeat) it is common to see them get straight legged early on in the edge and standing up as they go to transition to their other leg. As a result, they do not have any extension left and can't generate any power with their push off leg. We try and get our athletes to stay low all the way through the edge and then go into complete extension as if they are pushing off for a normal skating stride. We often tell our athletes to think "load" and then "explode". This type of edge work can help with stride lengthening, power and balance as it forces players into a low skating position. With this minor change in technique, the player will be skating faster as they perform the drill and as a result be more challenged by the drill itself. From there we begin to add transitions such as forwards inside edge to backwards inside edge on the same foot, we begin incorporating inside edges on one foot and eagle turns on the other side and then we attempt the same edge work sequence with a puck with the goal of maintaining the same speed.

With our older players, we tend to focus more on small area edge work which forces players to stay low throughout the drill but at the same time try and maintain and build their speed within the small area. We allow our players to be as creative as possible with this type of drill. A simple set up is to put a few pylons, an extra net and some broken sticks inside a circle and instruct them to work on tight turns, eagle turns and inside and outside edges within the circle. If a player can build and maintain speed in a small space like this it will open up a lot of time and space on the ice for that player. With this type of drill, we are constantly telling our players to "push whenever they are in a position to push". Too many players will get into a small area and bend their knees but not go into an extended position as seen in the normal skating stride. The length and the force generated during the push is what separates good players from great players.

If you have any questions or thoughts on edge work please feel free to contact us.

Brian Shackel, MSc

October 7, 2015

When it comes to teaching young, developing hockey players the proper mechanics of skating I usually always begin by asking specific questions to test the knowledge of individual players and groups (ie. How low should you be skating? What direction should your push be? Where should your skate recover to?, etc.) The one question which seems to come with the most confusion is "What direction should your arms be moving during the forwards skating stride?". I hear all kinds of different answers with the most common answer being to "pump your arms forwards and backwards" or "pull the rope". The thought process behind this type of arm swing is that if I am skating forwards my arms should move in the same direction that I am skating (ie. swing the arms forwards and backwards to keep them in the same plane of movement as you are skating). In theory, this make sense, but in reality it is far more complicated than this.

The idea behind the arm swing is to use it as a way to increase the amount of power which can be applied to the ice and therefore increase how fast we can skate. In order to grasp this concept, we must first understand the proper push off position. It is pretty standard across the power skating industry that players should be pushing off at a 45 degree angle in order to apply more force to the ice and increase the length of their stride. In order to maximize the amount of force which a player can apply to the ice they need to understand that for every action there is an equal and opposite reaction. This is the basis behind what the kinesiology world would call ground reaction forces. When our body applies a force to the ground (a push), the ground applies an equal force back onto the body. In order to increase the amount of force which we can apply to the ground I will use an off ice example from the NHL combine. When we do a vertical jump test, we inherently use our arms to help increase the amount of force which we apply to the ground and therefore, we get more force being applied back onto the body resulting in a greater vertical jump height.

In skating, a push off is no longer going directly down into the ground, but rather into the ground and outwards at a 45 degree angle. As a result, in order to increase the ground reaction force, we should try and move our arms in the opposite direction that we are pushing (not necessarily the direction we are skating). Take a look at elite level sprinters who push off directly behind their bodies when they sprint and as a result, they pump their arms forwards and backwards.


If you look at an elite level speed skater, you will notice that they move their arms in a side to side manner (most elite speed skaters push off at angles greater than 60 degrees and therefore need the sideways arm swing to increase their push off force).


In hockey, the arm swing should be a combination of both of these movements (forwards/backwards and sideways) depending on the width of the players push off leg. The wider they are pushing (or faster they are skating) the more sideways their resultant arm swing will become.


I am going to leave you with two points to ponder:

1. Imagine a player trying to do a vertical jump test and throwing their arms out to the side when they push off the ground....

2. As the hockey season gets underway I challenge you to watch the best players in the world and see what they do with their arms when they are skating....

One of the best ways to create an efficient arm swing is to not overthink the arms and just let them do what they naturally want to do....you might be surprised with the end result!

Brian Shackel, MSc

April 15, 2015

A few weeks back I had a great opportunity to be on the Krush Sports Performance Report to discuss Off Season Hockey Training. TSN 1260 and the Krush Sports Performance Report did a fantastic job of bringing in a few key members of the hockey development team in Barry Butt (Strength and Conditioning Coach), Manny Schmidt (Player Agent) and myself (Skating Development Coach). Check out the link below to listen to the podcast as we went through a round table discussion on what a typical off season should look like for most athletes.


Thanks and look forwards to being part of your development team,


February 5, 2015

I have had quite a few requests lately for both online video analysis packages as well as voice over analysis. I have uploaded a couple of samples to our youtube page to show what this type of analysis would look like. Click on the links below to see the samples:

Part 1: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_AfJgSKWx9w&feature=youtu.be

part 2: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YAl8AKF14jw&feature=youtu.be

If you have any questions regarding this type of service, please feel free to contact us for more details.


November 13, 2014

Looking to find a unique way to incorporate player development sessions into your minor hockey teams practice plans. Contact us about our baseline analysis and testing package. We will come out to your practice and coordinate a baseline testing (skating times) and video analysis session. Once we have collected the data we will then organize a follow up video session to sit down with the players one on one to work through the strengths and weaknesses of their skating stride. Once we have the data collected and have gone through the video, we will then run a follow up session to work on correcting the skating deficiencies which were noted during both the testing and video sessions. This package is a great introduction into the benefits of using video for feedback and additional sessions can be added to the package to maximize the athlete's development.

For more details on the package or to discuss other service packages targeted towards teams, please contact us at 780-932-2903 or brian@makingstridz.com

Making Stridz Athlete Development

August 29, 2014

Making Stridz Athlete Development would like to thank everyone who signed up for one of our camps or skated with us this past summer. It was the busiest summer we have had since starting the business up five years ago. With that being said, it is important to not let the development stop as you get back into the swing of the winter season. If you are interested in taking part in some small group skates or private sessions during the winter months, please let us know as we will be getting these organized once teams have been selected and schedules have been determined.

The summer took us all around the northern Alberta region including stops in Leduc, Lloydminster, Edmonton, Lacombe, St. Albert as well as one trip out to Brandon, Mb for a few small group skates with former Edmonton area players as well as a few local Brandonites!

Thanks for your business and hopefully everyone has a healthy and successful season!


February 12, 2014

What exactly does it take to get top end speed in hockey players?

Developing top end speed in hockey players requires a combination of multiple factors which together will create top end speed. These factors include but are not limited to off ice strength, power and explosiveness as well as the skaters ability to utilize proper technique (stride rate, stride length and body positions) in order to direct the forces into the ice. As a hockey player, you can learn a lot about what it takes to create elite level speed by watching athletes whose only purpose is to develop speed on the ice in short distance speed skaters (long and short track). These athletes all train for strength, power and explosiveness off the ice and then spend countless hours perfecting there technique to be able to apply as much force into the ice to develop speed. The best speed skaters in the world have a high combination of stride rate and length but more importantly skate with a high degree of knee flexion (or bend), go through a full range or motion on every push off, transfer their weight from the push off skate to the glide skate and push out to the side with a powerful arm swing coming forwards and slightly across their body! During the next couple of weeks, I strongly suggest you take some time to watch some of the worlds fastest athletes on ice and see if there is anything that they might be doing to generate speed that you could utilize in your daily training environment.

Brian Shackel, MSc

February 11, 2014

Congratulations to both the Lloydminster Universal Heat and SSAC Southgate Lions on very successful regular seasons. I had the opportunity to skate with several players from both these teams last summer as well as throughout the season and these players truly understand the small details which are required for elite level development! The Heat put up a +185 goal differential (230 For and 45 Against) while the Lions put up a +152 goal differential (232 For and 80 Against). These two teams are on a collision course for the North Division Final which would be a rematch of last years final which saw SSAC take down Lloydminster in three games en route to winning the Westerns! Should be a really exciting playoff run! Make sure to get down to a rink near you and check out some great playoff hockey!

February 3, 2014

The two words that get used on a daily basis with hockey coaches, players and skating instructors are Power and Explosiveness. Its great in theory to use these terms and tell our athletes that they need to skate with more power and more explosiveness, but what exactly does this mean?

When we talk about being powerful in sports, there are very few athletes and sports skills where power production is not a concern. Every time we throw or hit an object we teach our athletes to shift their weight in order to generate more "power". This same philosophy should be applied when we teach our athletes to skate. Part of what makes a great skater fast is the ability to transfer their weight from one foot to the other as they stride. Prior to the push, the athlete must load up their push off leg (get into a deep knee bend with their upper body positioned directly over top of the push off skate) and then extend their hip, knee and ankle through a large range of motion in as short of time as they can. This will create the explosive component of a great skater. As they go through this "explosive" push off, they will then transfer their weight over to the opposite leg and the cycle will begin again. The athlete must get their weight directly over top of their push off foot and load up the leg prior to starting the next push off. Athletes which are able to repeat this process over and over again with minimal time spent gliding will have great acceleration as well as top end speed. Next time you watch a game on TV, watch for a player who is chasing down a puck at full speed and watch for the lateral movement in their upper body as the weight is shifted from side to side (similar to how the push off is directed laterally).

Being an explosive and powerful skater requires a high degree of strength which must be emphasized with the athletes in their off season training programs or in the other sports they might be playing. The best combination for elite speed in hockey is to have long, powerful strides but also to keep the stride rate high in order to continually apply force into the ice!

Brian Shackel, MSc




Luke Rothfos

Current Team: Devon Drillers Atom 1

Season Highlights: One of the top points achievers in his 1660 league, Luke prides himself on hard work and being the play maker. He loves to skate and thrives in games that are fast paced. Currently, he leads the 1660 league in assists and has accumulated 59 points in 14 games this year.

Career Highlights: Luke helped his 2013-2014 Atom team to a strong showing for the Atom A Provincials by scoring the winning goal to allow his team into the semi-finals. Luke also has played with the 2004 Can West AAA Bandits for the last 2 years and placed second in team points last season. Luke was picked as the Devon Atom player of the month for last December and accredits his success to doing the fundamentals to the best of his ability at all times.

Playing Style: Many people have commented on how Luke skates very similarly to Taylor Hall in terms of his stance and posture. He loves to wind up and take the hard wrist shot. Luke models his style of hockey after Sydney Crosby and tries to emulate what he can do with the puck, but more importantly what he is doing without the puck


"It was the see and feel of the corrective exercises in conjunction with the skating video that made such a difference. I appreciate all your help Brian, and again, he couldn't have done it without you."
Jerry - Parent

"I feel so much stronger and more stable on my skates. Such a huge change in my skating stride from where I was at this time last season."
Marc - WHL Hockey Player

"Being able to see exactly how the athlete is moving is extremely beneficial in the development of a treatment plan for my patients."
Dr. Tyler - Chiropractor

"Brian Shackel, and Making Stridz Athlete Development, has been a tremendous resource for me. As a long-distance runner and cyclist, as well as avid strength and conditioning guy, I had some nagging form-related issues and muscle imbalances that that were beginning to threaten my ability to stay as active as I would like. I connected with Making Stridz because I want to perform at my best and avoid getting injured, and I want to do both of those things for a very long time. The Functional Movement Screen and Brian's insightful feedback have made an immediate difference in my movement form, and I can already see how my work with Brian will continue to improve my efficiency and injury-proofedness. All that, and he's a really nice guy to boot! Thanks, Brian."
Dan - Runner/Cyclist