Our Program

RINK Hockey Academy Winnipeg

The RINK Hockey Academy provides players in Manitoba a choice for the future of their hockey development.  Players who choose to attend the hockey academy do so knowing that they will receive the best on-ice, off-ice and educational services for their growth as a player and person.

A hockey academy does not follow a typical hockey schedule of two practices and one or two games per week.  Players practice four to five times weekly depending on their game schedule, with those games taking place in a weekend or showcase tournament format.  A RHA student-athlete will be on the ice more, with more skill development, than any other player in Manitoba.

We currently have 4 teams for the upcoming 2020-21 season; U15 Prep, U16 Prep, U18 Prep and U18 Female Prep, all of which compete in the CSSHL.

The RHA student athletes school day will be modified to allow maximum time for school and training needs. The teams will travel and compete mostly outside the province at the highest levels on both sides of the border during the full school year. Shaftesbury appointed team liaison will ensure players meet minimum standards and academic readiness for post secondary applications and career choices.

The RINK Hockey Academy is a program which will run yearly through the entire School Calendar year.

A Day in the Life

Hockey players and parents have long written off their winters to the grind of the season.  A typical day in the life of an RHA student-athlete allows for their school, hockey and training to be completed during the day.  With school in the mornings and training in the afternoon, players can expect to have all activities finished and completed by 5 pm daily.

Our players will start their day early, with core high school classes offered in a customized curriculum to offer a shorter morning class in order to accommodate their educational needs in the half-day format.  This class runs all year as opposed to the typical half-year class.  They have three “regular” class times, followed by another custom class to end their school day.  This flexible, customized, schedule is designed with the players in mind to allow 32+ high school credits throughout their 4 years.  (30 credits required for graduation)

Players will be on the bus by 1:00 p.m. daily and heading to either the RINK Training Centre or Southdale Community Centre for their ice times.  We will be working with skill development coaches in position specific, small group sessions at The RINK and with their full teams and team coaches doing skills and tactical training on the full ice at Southdale.

Education for Student-Athletes

We are proud to be working with Shaftesbury High School in the Pembina Trails School Division for the education component of the RINK Hockey Academy. 

Shaftesbury High School offers a full range of compulsory and optional courses in the areas of traditional academics, athletics and the arts. In addition, they also offer a full slate of Honours and Advanced Placement (AP) courses for our students who wish to challenge themselves beyond high school curricula. 

Shaftesbury High School has a proven track record of providing flexible and enriching academic programming for our high calibre hockey players.

  • ​Students/Players will participate in classes thoughout the morning and travel to the ice rink after class.
  • Students/Players will be able to earn up to eight credits during each year of the Academy. 
  • Shaftesbury provides a supportive and familiar place for students to write their SATs in preparation for application to NCAA and CIS universities and colleges up to three times per year.
  • A student advisor will be designated to help the players with academic and post-hockey career planning, research various CIS and NCAA universities and colleges and will liaison with our teachers to ensure that our players are reaching their academic goals.

For more information on Shaftesbury High School or Pembina Trails School Division visit their website sites.

The Rink Player Development is revolutionary hockey training focusing on skill development.

With our small group training and custom designed ice sheet, players will get more correctional feedback, more touches of the puck, more shots, more repetition, develop faster reaction time and will see more improvement in their game.

Skill specific training is done on a custom sized ice at the RINK Training Centre with Jon Cara, and the rest of The RINK’s professional staff.  With skill development as a primary objective, full ice practices can work on individual, team tactics and team play while position specific skills are developed in small group practices at the RINK Training Centre.

Skill Development will be highlighted by:

Power Skating – A specialty of Jon Cara and the RINK professionals, players will work with the premier skating coaches in Manitoba on developing their stride.  Players will learn to use their edges and proper technique to become more powerful and efficient skaters.

Shooting – To shoot harder and more accurately players require the proper technique and repetition.  In a shooting class with The RINK players will shoot more pucks in one session than they would through half a season.  Coaches will tweak their shooting technique and explain why they are making those changes to players can understand.  Shooting includes topics such as receiving the puck and positioning, quick release shooting, shooting in stride, wrist shots, slap shots, backhands, and more.

Passing & Individual Skills – Stick handling and passing are major skills often overlooked early in seasons.  In order to practice a breakout, power play, regroup or any other tactical skill, your players need to have the individual skills in order to execute those plays.  By raising the level of the individual skills of the players, we can allow for our team coaches to practice at a higher level and faster pace required to translate practice to game scenarios.

When working with a goaltending client, our emphasis is to work within the confines of each client’s approach…regardless of “style”. While there are fundamentals that must be instilled in any approach, and at all levels of play, our team at RINK Goalie Development believes in working within the context of the specific athlete’s game.

Why do we take this approach?

Goaltending style is a journey.

As a goaltending athlete progresses through a career, countless unique experiences are implanted upon this player’s mind. Through these experiences, the goaltender begins to build an approach. This approach combines these experiences with core fundamentals and the individual’s distinct strengths and limitations.

Goalie development is an often overlooked aspect on even high level teams. The goalies of RHA will work with RINK Goalie Development who have established themselves as the choice of Manitoba’s elite goaltenders. Ryan Cyr and Dan Ferguson, Owner and Manager of RINK Goalie Development respectively, will oversee goaltender development for all Academy goaltenders. This will include a coach working with goaltenders at Southdale during teams tactical sessions as well as working privately and providing mentorship while at the RINK Training Centre.

Testify Performance is outfitted with the latest in fitness equipment so you have every resource available for you to prove yourself. Features within the gym include a 1,107 sqft section of synthetic turf, 600 sqft multi-purpose studio, full serviced athletic therapy clinic, recovery lounge, men’s and women’s change rooms with showers and a 3-lane 200 m track.

Some of our equipment includes but is not limited to:

  • Keiser Pneumatic Racks
  • Keiser Pneumatic Infinity Functional Trainers
  • Keiser Pneumatic Strength Equipment capable of changing to the 1/10th of a pound
  • Keiser M3i Bikes and Total Body Trainer
  • Technogym Skill Run with built in biofeedback, parachute and sled training
  • Technogym Skill Mill, manual treadmill with both speed and resistance settings
  • Technogym Skill Row with multidrive technology 

RINK Testify Performance is lead by Dr. Jeff Leiter, Director of Sports Science & Performance. Jeff holds a PhD from the Department of Human Anatomy and Cell Science as well as a Master of Science in Sport Biomechanics. He is also currently a sport-science consultant for various NHL teams and hockey equipment companies. Also involved are Mike Hellyer, Manager of Off-Ice Programming and Matt Asmundson, Off-Ice Hockey Coordinator.