Among other duties and responsibilities, the Coach is responsible for: teaching sportsmanship; training players; recognizing and rewarding their efforts; ensuring fair treatment of and opportunities for all players; establishing how the team operates during practices and games; and implementing a discipline system.


All coaches (heads and assistants) as well as instructors of USA Hockey programs shall be registered for the current season (before the start of the season) in order to be eligible to coach/instruct in any regular season activities (practices, clinics, games, tournaments, try-outs, etc.), State, District, Regional Playoff, National Championships or in the USA Hockey Player Development Programs. There will be an annual fee of $22.00 to register the coaches (heads and assistants) and instructors. If a coach or instructor has paid a registration fee for the current year as a player he/she shall not be required to pay an additional fee as a coach or instructor.

Coaches shall be registered on the official Team Roster Registration form. All registered coaches (heads and assistants) as well as instructors shall register through a Registrar, Associate Registrar, or Junior Roster Manager by completing the information on the Individual Membership Registration Form with appropriate fee. All registered coaches (heads and assistants) as well as instructors shall receive a USA Hockey membership card, a subscription to the American Hockey Magazine, the USA Hockey Annual Guide, the USA Hockey Official Playing Rules Book and insurance coverages (See Registration, Individual Players/Coaches/ instructors).

PLEASE NOTE: All USA Hockey Coaching Education Program Instructors, Initiation Program Instructors and Course Conductors as well as National Player Development Camp Coaches will be exempt from the $22.00 annual register fee, but must complete an Individual Membership Registration form.

It is strongly recommended that all coaches and instructors wear hockey helmets during on-ice sessions, including practices, controlled scrimmages and coach and referee clinics (seminars).

Coaching Ethics Code

All USA Hockey coaches (head, assistant and instructors) must abide by the USA Hockey Coaching Ethics Code, and understand that violations may result in full or partial forfeiture of coaching privileges in programs, at sites or events under USA Hockey's governance. The Ethics Code Agreement states that the coach and/or instructor has read and will abide by USA Hockey's Coaching Ethics Code.

Coaches and instructors need only to sign this document once and it will be valid for the duration of the coach's or instructor's participation with USA Hockey programs. All coaches have an obligation to be familiar with USA Hockey's Coaching Ethics Code, or as it may be amended from time to time. Lack of awareness or misunderstanding of an ethical standard is not itself a defense to a charge of unethical conduct (See USA Hockey Coaching Ethics Code Booklet).

All registered USA Hockey coaches (head and assistant) and instructors of USA Hockey programs must sign the Coaching Ethics Code Agreement in order to be eligible to coach or instruct in any regular season activities (practices, clinics, games, tournaments, tryouts, etc.), State, District, Regional, Playoff, National Championships or in the USA Hockey Player Development Program.

Coaches and Instructors will receive the Coaching Ethics Code and sign the ethics agreement through their respective association and/or Registrar. Each coach and instructor must have a signed agreement properly filed prior to the start of the season. Each association is responsible for enforcing and tracking signed ethics code agreements for their coaches.


The Coaching Education Program establishes levels of achievement for each individual, from the beginner to the highly skilled expert. The objective of the program is to improve the caliber and quality of coaching in amateur hockey.

Purpose: Educating coaches in pursuit of excellence in hockey.

Mission: The Coaching Education Program is committed to developing coaches who will be effective instructors and role models through a comprehensive education program at all levels. The Coaching Education Program shall emphasize the teaching of fundamental skills, conceptual development, sportsmanship, and respect for the dignity of the individual athlete.

Values: The Coaching Education Program embraces the following values to establish the moral and ethical priorities that serve to guide the coaching program.

1. Character 4. Integrity 7. Sportsmanship
2. Commitment 5. Knowledge 8. Vision
3. Enjoyment 6. Leadership

Coaching Education Program Guidelines: The USA Hockey coaching education guidelines recommend the Advanced Coaching Education Level for all USA Hockey High School coaches and instructors. The High School Section recommends the Intermediate Coaching Level or higher for High School Junior Varsity Coaches. The Associate Coaching Level or higher is recommended by the Section for novice or developmental level high school teams. The Section suggests that, where possible, Intermediate and Associate Level coaches should be provided with a mentor at the Advanced or Master Level. A detailed description of the Coaching Education Program is contained in the USA Hockey Annual Guide provided to all registered coaches.

USA Hockey has produced a very successful instructional series of films for both players and coaches, which is currently in use as a part of both the Coaching Education Program and the Player Development Program. The series is also widely used by the International Ice Hockey Federation (IIHF), as well as many of its member organizations. These instructional films cover the following individual skills:

  • Fundamentals of Power Skating
  • Advanced Power Skating
  • Checking
  • Fundamentals of Puck Control
  • Designing a Practice
  • Training and Conditioning for Hockey (3-part series)
  • Developing Fundamental Skills for Defensemen
  • Goalkeeping: Part I
  • Goalkeeping: Part II
  • Passing and Receiving
  • Shooting and Scoring


High School Coaches need to be aware and supportive of the USA Hockey policies and codes of conduct in place to ensure the health and safety of players and staff. These policies and codes can be reviewed by clicking the following buttons.