National Skills Standards & Testing program

Test information and procedures

A series of individual skill tests have been designed to measure the skill level of players. The tests can be administered by coaches, requiring very little equipment, expense and set-up time.

It is ideal to test players twice per season, but if ice time is available, three times is recommended. Testing two or three times in a season will help to establish performance levels and demonstrate the amount of improvement that takes place. It is very important that the testing environment is set up in the same manner each time to ensure the comparisons of test results from each session are meaningful and accurate.

If testing were to take place three times throughout the season, the best times would be:

  • Beginning of season: sets a baseline for each player and the team
  • Mid-season: demonstrates the amount of skill improvement of each player and the team
  • End of season: demonstrates improvement from the start to the end of the season

The tests can be administered during one ice session with all stations active simultaneously. A second option would be to incorporate the test into a series of practices by setting up and executing one or two stations over several ice sessions.

Equipment required:

  • 30 pucks
  • 100-foot tape measure
  • Spray paint
  • Three stop watches
  • 10 pylons
  • Four clipboards with pens

Personnel required:

  • Lead tester – to coordinate all on-ice activities
  • Assistant testers – to lead individual testing stations
  • Recorders – optional (can assist with recording scores at each station)

To ensure you are prepared to administer the Hockey Canada National Skills Standards & Testing Program:

  • View the ice set-up for each testing station
  • Download a copy of the NSST Handbook
  • Download a copy of the Station Posters for each station
  • Prepare Team Recording Sheets for each station
  • After testing, place all player scores on a master recording sheet
  • Share results with players and parents