First up, the University of Alberta is looking into the results of brain trauma in youngesters.
Now, a University of Alberta professor will study 11- and 12-year-old peewee hockey players, using a device attached to their helmets to figure out how much force is likely to damage the brain.
Neuropsychologist Martin Mrazik will attach an eight-gram device the size of a quarter to the helmets of 40 young players with the St. Matthew hockey club. The devices will gather data throughout the season.
The tiny cranium impact analyzer, from Saskatoon-based Safebrain Systems Inc., measures acceleration force in several directions and records the time along with data about each impact.
Mrazik will also test the players' brain function at the start of the season for things like reaction time, attention, concentration. Kids who get a concussion will be tested again.
Some news about the minors.
The Colorado Avalanche organization announced today that they have a new Central Hockey League affiliate, the Allen Americans.
Located in Allen, Texas, the club had a working relationship with the Lake Erie Monsters, the Avalanche’s American Hockey League affiliate. Three players from the Allen Americans club have seen action with Lake Erie in the past two seasons.
Although the Allen Americans have only existed for two seasons, they have accomplished quite a bit in a very short amount of time. The team won the CHL’s Governors Cup, given to the team with the best regular-season record. The Americans have also made two trips to the conference finals in both years of the club’s existence.
Digital Journal is looking at which prospects might make their respective teams:
Perhaps the safest bet to jump into a NHL job this year is Colorado Avalanche forward Gabriel Landeskog, who has been all but guaranteed a spot on the roster. Landeskog was the 2nd overall pick in this year's draft behind Nugent-Hopkins, and because of his size and maturity is widely considered the most NHL-ready prospect from the 2011 draft. Landeskog's junior team, the Kitchener Rangers of the OHL, even went as far as dropping him from their roster for the upcoming season in anticipation that he would be making the rebuilding Avalanche.
His exercise method is a multifaceted — he calls it holistic — approach that trains muscle groups in a variety of ways. The program includes conventional and Olympic weight training, drills to improve balance and function, core-strengthening exercises, injury prevention and "prehab," plyometrics (a focus on muscle speed and power) and conditioning.
It isn't your old-time high school weight room: To become a Barwis trainer, Barwis said, one must go through a nine-level certification process, and the second level alone involves learning 1,250 different exercises. Barwis says he has trained hundreds of college, Olympic and professional athletes, and has been involved in training people for 42 different kinds of sporting events, from baseball to swimming to track and field.