Several tips should be used in conjunction for improving your ice hockey face-off. Some of these tips involve the mechanics of the face-off, such as your stance and the movements and techniques you utilize when the puck drops. The other tips focus a bit more on the game overall, such as proper communication with the defensemen. Consider whether your face-off is in offensive, neutral, or defensive territory, and always size up your opponent. Follow these tips for improving your face-off and your hockey score will surely reflect the changes.
Stance is your first important tip. Bend your knees and get low so that you have plenty of leverage. Speed and anticipation are vital in the first seconds of the face-off. The play starts as soon as the puck leaves the referee's hand. Get in fast for the block under your opponent's stick. Remember that in defensive territory, a neutral block is equivalent to a win. As a center, you must also anticipate the style of your opponent. Knowing multiple techniques is essential for responding to whatever your opponent is going to do.
Several techniques are often used in the face-off. If you're on the offense, the straight draw back, open ice push, and reverse block are three techniques to adopt. These moves will bring the puck to your left winger, forward to the goal, or to the right winger, respectively. On the defense, a straight drawback or block can be utilized. Check out the Hockeyshot link below for a great video guide to these moves. Always remember to block the opponent with your stick, concentrating on defense first, and then get the puck to your teammates. Communication with your wingers is vital prior to any play. What you do is irrelevant (short of shooting the puck in yourself, of course) if your teammates are unaware of your intentions.