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President's Message

2017 Update from the PYHA President

PYHA Family’s

On behalf of PYHA and its board of directors, Happy 2017!!!  I hope you are enjoying the 2016-17 winter hockey season?  I have enjoyed watching our numbers grow, but more importantly, I love watching our players grow!  If you are at the rink and have not thanked a PYHA coach or volunteer, please do so.  These people dedicate a lot of their time to your son or daughter.  Without our volunteers, PYHA would not be able to thrive. 

We have received several emails and phone calls regarding the PYHA pictures.  We are fully aware of the situation and are currently working with the photographer on what our options are for each of you.  Once we have more information, we will certainly pass it along.

As we finish up this season, I want to remind all families of Article XX “Zero Tolerance” of the PYHA policy; there will be no physical or verbal abuse by any individual, group or entity towards any on-ice official or off-ice official at any time before, during or after a game.  This includes, but is not limited to, shouting at referees, screaming at team players and/ or staff or yelling at team parents etc.  All violations of zero tolerance may result in (30) day suspension.  

Lastly, the back locker rooms (Rec. rooms) are a place for players and parents to have more room when getting dressed.  We ask that you respect this space.  We have had several complaints from the arena management that players and parents are not cleaning up around them.  Please, do your part and more to keep that area clean.  We also ask that you limit to only one parent in the room at a time.  We have as many as 60-70 kids in there and when you bring in both parents and other siblings, it can be crazy.  Its not a playground, it’s a dressing room!!

I wish all players/coaches the best of luck the remainder of the season!

Luke Gruden

To PYHA coaches, players, parent, family and friends

Welcome to a new year of hockey in Peoria.  I look forward to being your new President of PYHA.   I want to thank Drew Cassidy for his many years of services to our organization.  If you happen to see Drew around the rink this year, please thank him for all his time and efforts.

I was recently sent a Facebook message that I wanted to share with all of you.  It is an article by Kendra Smiley - Author & Speaker: Sometimes I think we, as parents, do lose the focus of what is really important:

Sports can teach children many valuable lessons and be a great source of exercise and fun. They can, however, also have adverse effects. We don't want to suggest the negative aspects of involvement in youth sports are guaranteed. Instead we want to mention some things parents should consider.

One of the points of consideration actually results from the misconception that kids should (1) train at an early age and (2) only participate in a single sport. The idea is that these two factors will make the child a more successful competitor. What actually occurs is a great increase in something called overuse injuries. Specialists in the area of sports medicine have found that kids focusing on only one sport are twice as likely to develop serious over-use injuries. Diversification helps a great deal and so does limiting the hours spent engaged in a single sport per week. Besides sports injuries, kids often experience burn out when they put excessive time and energy into one specific sport.

Now let's look at the positive side of youth sports. They're capable of building a child's confidence and of revealing the positive results of being teachable. In a team sport, a child can learn life skills like teamwork, the importance of encouraging others, and leadership.

What role do you, as a parent, play in youth sports? Mom and Dad, you may not be the coach but your involvement is still vital. There will be ups and downs as your child participates and it will be your responsibility to teach the all-important skill of recovering from failure.

Keeping things in perspective is also an important parental task. It's highly unlikely a young person involved in youth sports will go on to take part in college athletics (98 out of 100 high school athletes never play collegiate sports of any kind at any level). And only 1 in 16,000 high school athletes attains a professional career in sports. (Thank you Georgia Career Information Center, Georgia State University, Copyright 2006)

Parents please don't confuse pressure and demands with enthusiasm and support. Keep the goal in mind. The steps involved in raising a healthy, responsible adult may not look exactly like what it takes to raise a sports star-super athlete. Be certain to focus on what is truly important.

I want to wish everyone the best of luck this season.

Luke Gruden