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What to do when hockey stops being fun

I realized that lately, I haven’t been having fun playing hockey. I remember when I first started to play deck hockey, back in the summer of 2015, how much fun I had. I would play hard and be aggressive. I was so good that they moved me to the best team to play in for our end of the year tournament. I had the best time!

Then I remembered when I went to an ice hockey camp last year and played with all the girls. I made so many connections and had an amazing time making new friends and just hanging out.

Lately, though, I’ve been feeling like going to hockey is a chore—something I have to do even though I’m not getting any enjoyment out of it. When I realized that, it seemed to disappoint me. And I asked myself, “Where did all the fun go?” and “Why am I not having a good time anymore?” I thought maybe it’s because I’m stuck in a hole. I’m not where I want to be and I don’t feel like I’m improving even though I put in so much hard work. I realized that I need to change something, do something different.

So, I’ve been just starting to let loose. I was always so focused on getting good and working super hard and trying to be perfect. I left all that pressure behind and just went on the ice as “myself”. I was making mistakes and learning how to improve and realizing what I needed to work on. I started to put my heart back into the game. I started to play with passion and go along with it. I needed to put the fun back in the game and show my TRUE self. I may not be any better than I was last practice, but I’m getting there and I am in a different frame of mind—more relaxed and able to just enjoy playing hockey.

This past weekend I met up with my friend Romeo who I haven’t seen in a couple of months and my other very close friend, Shane, to play open hockey. It was quite fun. Both of my friends are insanely talented at playing hockey, so playing with them was pretty fun and entertaining. It made me realize what hockey is all about: just having a good time with your buddies.

We played a little 3 v 3 in a rink I have never been to, and even though it took me 15 tries to score a goal, we all worked together and had some good laughs while doing it. I realized that is all that mattered at the end of the day: having fun at what you are doing, sharing it with great friends and working together. That day will go down in history to being a great hockey day with some great people.

Hockey may be about competition and winning but it’s also about having fun and making long-lasting friendships with others.


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Annabella Gatto

More about Annabella Gatto

I started playing ice hockey when I was 15. Throughout my journey there has been many bumps in the road but also great sights to see along the way and I'm here to write all about it!