The first time you join a team, we'll give you a shirt. But if you play for multiple seasons and start to wear it out, or you change teams, or you just decide that you'd like to have an extra one, you can buy an additional shirt for $8 each. Available sizes are: x-small, small, medium, large, x-large, and xx-large. Not all sizes are always available on hand. We place a new order with our local t-shirt printer about once every other season.
To buy an extra shirt, write to firstname.lastname@example.org and be sure to include your name and the size(s) and color(s) you want. We will probably be able to get your new shirt to you at the following week's game night, but that is not a guarantee, so come with a backup. Please bring cash payment.
When does it start?
The Winter 2015 season runs on Friday nights and goes from December 12th through the beginning of March. The Spring 2015 season will also run on Fridays and will begin on April 3rd. Inquire now if you are interested in starting your own team, or if you want to join an existing team! For the fall, winter, and spring seasons, we play on Friday nights. For the summer season, we will pick a different night of the week (probably Monday or Tuesday, but that is yet to be determined).
Where do you play?
We play at the CCBA Witherell Recreation Center at 1 Taylor Street, Lebanon, NH 03766. We play in the third-floor gym of that building. Just head in and go upstairs. There is no need to check in with the front desk, as the fact that you'll be carrying a hockey stick will identify you as being part of the league. (Note that this league is not a CCBA program and you do not need to be a member in order to play.)
What are the basic rules?
The short version: no rough contact, no icing, no offsides (except on face-offs), no slapshots, no high sticks, no stick lifting, and don't touch the goalies. THIS IS A NON-CONTACT LEAGUE. Please keep your body under control at all times! Rough stick checking and hacking close to opponents' hands are not allowed. Most people in this league do not wear hockey gloves, and they should not feel as though they have to in order to avoid getting their fingers broken. Keep your stick blades below your waist at all times. Raising your stick to signal a pass or to go up-and-over the head of another player will result in a two-minute penalty. Player safety is paramount in a league such as this, in which players do not wear helmets or mouth guards.
Is there a referee?
You bet there is. All games are officiated by a referee. Please be courteous and respectful to the referees at all times. (As an aside, we're always looking for good, reliable people to officiate games. If you're interested, please get in touch for details about responsibilities and pay. Experience is preferred but not required.)
What kind of equipment do I need?
You'll want to use either a real ice hockey stick or a real street hockey stick, not the half-sized toy stick you might have used in gym class. Any type of stick blade is fine (e.g., plastic, wood, fiberglass). If you can tape your stick blade with hockey tape, please do, as we think that this might help to protect the gym floor. Eyewear and shin pads are MANDATORY. Any type of eyewear is fine. For about $7 you can get a pair of rifle safety glasses at Walmart. For shin pads, practically anything is acceptable. Most people prefer soccer shin pads, but you can wear the big ice hockey ones, too, if you want. Everything else (e.g., mouthguard, gloves) is completely optional. Most people do not wear gloves.
What kind of equipment do goalies need?
Goalies are encouraged to wear street hockey goalie pads. The essentials are: helmet, chest protector, leg pads, goalie stick, blocker, and glove. Other things like elbow pads and padded pants are optional. If you have a full set of real goalie equipment, great. If not, it is perfectly fine (and quite common) to cobble together an improvised set with a baseball glove and so on.
Puck or ball?
Ball. Specifically, we use the orange Mylec warm weather street hockey balls. (By the way, we will put out extra balls to warm up with before the game. Please do not bring your own; it just adds unnecessary confusion when we go to collect them after warmups.)
What do we do for uniforms?
Everyone who joins a team gets one free Upper Valley Floor Hockey t-shirt in your team color, and that serves as your uniform. The first time you play in the league, you'll receive a shirt. After that, if you want an extra shirt or if you switch teams and need a shirt of a new color, you can purchase one.
What's the game format?
Games consist of two, 25-minute running time halves, separated by a brief halftime of just a few minutes. (Since we are paying to rent the gym in hour-long blocks of time, games need to begin and end on time.) Normal game play consists of 4-on-4 out on the floor, plus goalies, where two of each team's four floor players are women. If you are low on players for a given game, then you may play shorthanded, but you cannot put more than two men on the floor (not including the goalie). If you only have two women show up, they can play the whole game without substitutes, or your team can play shorthanded if they wish to take breaks. If you only have one woman show up, you will have to play one person shorthanded, and she can play the whole game or take breaks, at which point you will temporarily be two people shorthanded on the floor. If you have zero women show up, then you must forfeit the game. An alternative option to playing shorthanded, if you have one woman show up, is to ask the other team's captain prior to the start of the game if they would be willing to play the game 3-on-3 with one woman on the floor. The other captain is in no way obligated to agree to this (and might have good reasons not to, such as wanting to give people enough playing time), but you can ask.
If we have a female goalie, can we play three men out on the floor?
No. You still need to have two women and two men on the floor, per the above rule.
How many players are on a team?
That's up to the teams. We suggest about 10. If you are forming a team, remember: you need to have a goalie and you want enough women on your team so that you don't have to play shorthanded if for whatever reason some of your players can't make it on a given week. Don't forget that people often get sick, travel for work, go on vacations, and have other schedule conflicts. Plus, you want to plan to have substitutes—you will get tired if you have no subs!
Our regular goalie is sick, out of town, or busy. Can we borrow a goalie?
Yes, under certain circumstances you can borrow a goalie from another team in the league. It's no fun for anyone if a team shows up without a goalie and/or without any goalie pads. For that reason, teams are allowed to ask a goalie from another team to play for them for that game. Arranging this is the responsibility of the team, not the league or the referee. You may borrow a goalie only when you are very short on people or genuinely have no other option. (If you have pads and ample people, then the right thing to do is for someone on your team to volunteer, before asking another team to borrow their goalie.)
Can we add a player to our roster for the playoffs?
Of course not! For a player to be eligible to play in the playoffs, he or she must play in at least a third of his or her team's regular season games. Having a "part-time" player on your roster is fine, but don't bring a ringer in just for the playoffs or the "important" games. That's not cool.
What is the tiebreaker rubric for determining playoff seeding?
If two or more teams are tied for points at the end of the season, the following tiebreaker criteria are applied, in order: 1) any team that has forfeited during the regular season is automatically seeded lower, 2) head-to-head records, 3) records against common opponents starting with highest-placing teams, 4) coin toss in the presence of the team captains.
Is there an age minimum or an age limit?
Anyone over the age of 18 is welcome to play. We have people in their 20s through their 50s playing in this league. (If you aren't sure whether this activity is right for you, physically, please consult your doctor.)
Do I need experience to play?
No. This is an adult recreational league. It is designed to have a broad appeal across all skill levels, not to be something for hockey players only. If you are relatively new to floor hockey or it's been decades since you played as a kid, then this is the league for you. If you are an experienced former ice hockey player who wants to play at an intense level of competition, then this league may not be for you. You are still welcome to play, but you need to understand the style of the league and observe ALL the safety rules, including no stick-lifting, no slapshots, and no body contact.
How much does it cost?
The cost varies based on the length of the season (the more teams in the league, the longer the regular season because every team needs to play each other an equal number of times). The Winter 2015 season consists of 8 weeks of regular season games plus 1 week of playoffs for a total of 9 games (Note: in a five-team league, one team will not get to play a playoff game). The team fee is $652.50 per team for the season. We do team fees instead of individual fees, so that teams can have some control over the per-person cost. (If you have a big team, then each person pays less, but gets less playing time. If you have a small team, then each person pays a little more, but gets more playing time.) Each team submits ONE check for their team fee, due on the first night of the season. Each team needs to pick a captain, and it is the captain's responsibility to collect the money from everyone on the team and then turn in one check or cash payment for the team.
What does the team fee go towards?
The vast majority of the team fee goes to running the league. There are many costs involved, including gym rental, insurance (which we are required to have), referees, equipment such as nets and balls, foam barriers, t-shirts, first aid supplies, advertising, the website, miscellaneous fees, and more. We try really hard to keep it so that the average player on an average-sized team pays no more than about $9 per game in order to play in this league. When you compare it to other local recreational activities and what they cost, we like to think that this is a pretty good deal!
Is this league run by the CCBA?
No. We're an independent, outside group that pays to rent the CCBA's gym. The CCBA is a great partner, but Upper Valley Floor Hockey is a completely separate and distinct entity. You do not need to be a CCBA member in order to play in the league. Please be respectful of the facility, courteous to the CCBA staff, and don't leave behind water bottles and other trash.
Are spectators allowed?
Spectators are welcome, but seating space is extremely limited. There aren't really any bleacher seats available, so spectators generally sit on the benches with the players. There isn't much space. Also, spectating is potentially dangerous, as there is only a one-foot-high barrier between the benches and the area of play. Spectators need to stay alert at all times and watch out for balls that may sail out of bounds without warning.
I want to play—what do I do?
We are always looking for people to play, and no, you do not need to put together a whole team in order to sign up. Singles/individuals can sign up and we can put you on a team. We play year-round. As soon as one season ends, the next one starts up—usually with only a week or two off in between. If we're already in the middle of a season and it is too late to add you to a current team, then we can add you to the waitlist and get you placed somewhere the next season. Either way, let us know and we'll figure something out.
Rules and rule enforcement are subject to the discretion of the league. Please respect the referees. Rules and policies are subject to change at any time without notice. Floor hockey is an activity that involves risk of personal injury. By playing in this league, you knowingly and freely accept assume all such risks. All players play at their own risk. ©2014 Upper Valley Floor Hockey.
Upper Valley Floor Hockey is an adult, recreational-level coed indoor floor hockey league serving New Hampshire and Vermont's Upper Valley. We play year-round in Lebanon, NH. Established 2014.
To support healthy activities for adults in our community, consider sponsoring Upper Valley Floor Hockey. The exposure is great, and the annual sponsorship fee is very low. If you're curious, write to: email@example.com
For any questions, comments, or inquiries, write to: firstname.lastname@example.org.