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Floorball and COVID-19

by Darryl Gross – 3/22/20

This article wasn’t even on the radar when we first started our Floorball Musings page. For most of us, the past two weeks have turned our world upside down. Schools are closed, businesses are shuttered, sporting events have been cancelled, people are practicing social distancing and there are no gatherings whether by choice or government decree. With the uncertainty about when/if we will be able to get back to life as we knew it, and with the prospect of an extended period of time stuck at home and away from our normal activities, many folks are getting creative. Students are attending online classes, parents are setting up home-school programs, people are spending quality time with their families and many are volunteering in their communities. We are a resilient bunch and we’ll get through it. But we still need to remain active and keep kids engaged.

Floorball should be part of your activity plan. While organized sports programs have been put on hold, we can still enjoy the benefits of floorball. As individuals we can remain active, improve dexterity, hand-eye coordination, and just enjoy some leisure time. We can even play together in small groups, work on skills and have fun while maintaining comfortable distance. After all, floorball is a PASSING game. You can’t pass to somebody who is right next to you!

In this piece, I’d like to address a few groups that are particularly well suited to floorball at home.

YOUNG KIDS (3-9 years old)   It’s hard to keep children engaged all day long. They can only sit for so long before they need to move. Give them a floorball stick and a ball and keep them occupied for hours. Floorball sticks are lightweight and durable. They are very easy to control for even the youngest players – especially when sized appropriately. We have a large selection of kid sticks with narrower shafts, shorter lengths and smaller blades. Our smallest mini sticks can even be used by toddlers. While a standard floorball is very lightweight plastic and appropriate for all levels of play, we also have a softer “flex ball” which bounces less and is often easier to control by younger players. Check out appropriate sticks at Kid Sticks

HOCKEY PLAYERS   Hockey season is over. We weren’t ready, but most on-ice activities have ended. Time to get an early start on off-season training. Work on your stick skills, practice soft hands or just keep active around the house. If you can get together with a few friends, set up a net in the driveway, street, basement or garage and work small-game scrimmages.

If you’ve heard about floorball and have not had the chance to give it a try, now is the time! Get a stick and ball and start playing – play anywhere, outside or indoors. The stick is light and easy to control. The ball is superlight – not like a hockey puck. It takes a little while to learn the feel and control the ball. But as you do, your stick skills will improve. Just practice – always moving.

REMEMBER – this is FLOORBALL, not floor hockey or street hockey. The stick is SHORT when compared to a hockey stick. The correct length stick will only go 1 or 2 inches above your belly button. Don’t be tempted to get a longer stick. Floorball sticks are designed to be played close to the body. If you play with a stick that is too long, your arms will not be in the correct orientation to get the best performance. For more information about the differences, visit Street Hockey / Floor Hockey.

Have you heard about “zorro” floorball tricks? Perhaps you’ve seen a video showing players performing amazing tricks with a floorball or have a friend with a trick stick. Being stuck at home gives you the PERFECT opportunity to learn these skills. Zorro or Z-Tricks floorball sticks have a pocket at the toe of the blade which helps you “cup” the ball. The pocket gives just enough edge to keep control of the ball while you learn to keep it on the blade while swinging over your head or behind your back. But remember, zorroing is a skill that takes hours of practice to master. You will not be able to zorro right away. There are many videos available to get you started.

NOTE: THERE ARE SOME ZORRO OR TRICK STICKS ON THE MARKET THAT HAVE A HUGE “BASKET” AT THE TOE OF THE BLADE. WE DO NOT SELL THESE STICKS AT FLOORBALLPLANET AND DO NOT RECOMMEND THEM. The reason is simple – if the ball is sitting in a huge cup at the toe of the blade, you will NEVER learn the skills needed to do effective tricks. You might as well tape the ball to your stick. It might make it easy to do tricks, but what have you learned? Besides, these types of sticks get in the way of effective stickhandling, passing and shooting. Doing zorro tricks is great fun but the real benefit in learning zorro techniques is the advanced stick skills you develop. Get a game-legal zorro stick and skip the crutch. Zorro Sticks

FAMILIES   One of the few bright spots in the coronavirus situation is the quality time we are getting to spend with our families. While there are many activities we can do together at home, there are not many choices when it comes to physical activity. Floorball is one of the few activities that the whole family can join. All you need is some sticks, balls, and perhaps a goal net for shooting. Mom, Dad, Brothers, Sisters, and friends of all ages can play together. Any beginner stick will do or you can start with one of our 3-stick sets to make selection easy. Play Floorball At Home

All of our recommended sticks and balls are available on Amazon, Walmart, eBay, and Wish. We also have various sticks available on those sites though the configurations may differ from what we offer here. While we always recommend precurved sticks for individual players, most of our “Play at Home” sets include a straight blade stick. We do this because people often are unsure of which stick side to select. A straight blade stick solves this dilemma.

Let’s make the best of our time at home.

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