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New Puck Design Ready to Change our Game

March 06, 2019

Since the modern version of our game was created in the 1980’s there have been improvements in the equipment. Skates, wheels, sticks, helmets all have received upgrades in design and technology. The one item that has been constant has always been the puck. That design has remained the same for as long as anyone can remember. Six to Eight nylon rivets or glides, the same dimensions of an ice puck and all designs very similar in weight. There are currently 12 manufacturers of the Inline-Roller Pucks. That is all going to change in 2019…

Four years ago, in Ann Arbor Michigan two roller hockey enthusiasts Derek Sanborn and Doug Bauman came up with an idea. They asked themselves is there any way to improve the puck we/our kids currently use to play roller hockey? It rolls, it bounces, it wears out. Is this as good as it gets? So, they created the company Hoplite Hockey and got started on a mission to revolutionize the roller hockey puck. Weight, material, number of glides, dimensions. Everything was on the table.

In 2018 their first prototype rolled out to the rinks around North America. They were looking for the leagues, programs and rinks to do their worst. Even a rink in Alberta (Roller Hockey Lethbridge) was able to get on the list and contribute to the testing. Doug and Derek instructed all the volunteers, tell us what you like, don’t like, ways you think we can improve. Beat up the puck, all feedback is welcome. Doug and Derek ran their own tests as well. Glide tests, bounce tests, durability, etc. Adjustments were made, new materials were found, and the most complete version of the puck was starting to take shape. Weight was down to 110 grams (which is the average). Glide pins were positioned closer to the edge to create better balance but what about the other problems? The bouncing and rolling?

The biggest improvement to the roller hockey puck was about to be added. Something no one would ever have imagined. A way to get the puck to settle down and stop rolling on edge. That is the most irritating problem roller hockey players face. Now they had a solution. The internal gyroscope! The inside of the puck is hollowed out and allows for a plastic device to be inserted. It works similar to a fidget spinner, when the puck moves the gyroscope begins to spin. The gyroscope does not want to wobble or roll it wants to lay flat. The gyroscope could be one of the biggest innovations our game ever receives. We shall see what happens when the final testing begins…

AMRHA has arranged for a few opportunities to test the puck and see if what Hoplite Hockey has made will truly change the experience for all players

  • The first is in Edmonton Inline’s Winter League Drop-in on March 21st 
  • The second is in Red Deer for the Skills and Drills session, Mid-April
  • The first two preseason games in the AB Pro Roller Hockey League Season Two, Mid-April

If all these tests are positive, we will make the puck the official game puck for the 2019 AMRHA Recreational Invitational in Calgary.

Exciting times with the changes this puck could bring. Updates will be posted on Facebook and Twitter as they happen! 


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