When it comes to the sports that China dominates, we often think of things like gymnastics, badminton, athletics or jumping. What about ice hockey?
This ice-skating game may not be able to attract strong public response like football or basketball, but the number of Chinese teenagers participating in learning and practicing ice hockey is growing. The Nestled ice rink on the 4th floor of the giant commercial center in the new urban area northwest of Beijing is one of the city’s newest ice rinks. The yard is also a hockey center for teenagers and gifted players.
Kevin Masters is one of the coaches from Canada: “The hockey sport has just started in China, where the subject is not a focused sport. However, your talent is here. create a strong impression for me – children from four, five years old to teenagers, their skating skills and personal talents can perfectly match what I know in my hometown of Canada.
Mr. Zhou Jianwei has an 8-year-old son who is a goalkeeper. Mr. Zhou said: “My son started playing hockey coincides with the time he saw the animated cartoon Transformers. At that time, I saw hockey goalkeepers look exactly like Transformers characters in the movie with all kinds of pages. That’s why, so I chose the goalkeeper position”.
The colder climates provinces in the northeast are considered China’s ice hockey focus areas. Most players in Chinese hockey teams also came from those places. Now that there are many new ice rinks built in Beijing, this trend has begun to change. Local organizers of the sport noted that the number of U-16 hockey players, aged 16 or younger, in Beijing is likely to exceed the number of players in the north-eastern region in the next two seasons.
They explained that the reason is that families in Beijing have better financial conditions to let their children play ice hockey, an expensive sport; Besides, many other sports are being developed in the northeast, which also attracts the number of people involved, reducing the number of people participating in ice sports.
Mr. Mark Simon, vice president and head coach of Beijing Imperial Guard Hockey Club, one of the members of the Beijing Youth Hockey Association, said that the number of teams participating in the tournament associations have increased in recent years.
Simon is a former banker in the Canadian city of Montreal. He started playing hockey when he was 5 years old. He left behind all the tools to play this game at home when he first moved to China. A few years later, he worked for a company that built ice rinks in Asia. Simon said that among the developing cities in Asia, Beijing is the most developed in this area.