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CSYHA offers two session of Learn to Play.  Session 1 runs Mid-October though Late December and session 2 runs early January through early March. 

Registration for both sessions of Learn to Play typically opens around Labor Day and is performed online.   Discounts are given for those of register for both sessions, if you register for only one to try it and want to continue the discount can still be applied.  

LTP sessions are usually Forty-five minutes in duration both Saturday mornings (typically 9:00 a.m. or 10:00 a.m.) and Monday nights (6:15 p.m.).   No prior skating or hockey experience is necessary. Teaching kids how to skate is what we do!   
Our focus is providing a fun, safe, and exciting experience for all kids to learn how to skate and to begin learning the basic skills of ice hockey.   We will play some “hockey” the last ice time of Session 1 and the last few Saturday ice slots of Session 2. These games are NOT our focus. Our focus is F- U-N! We may add in a little skill development along the way.   

What You Need for LTP Sessions

Most kids who attend LTP sessions do wear full hockey gear.  This includes:

  • Hockey Helmet (Required)
  • Hockey Skates (Required)
  • Shin Pads 
  • Elbow Pads
  • Hockey Pants
  • Shoulder Pads
  • Hockey Gloves
  • Stick

Most of the LTP session are focused on skating skills and building balance and leg/foot strength.  Removing the stick from the equation forces them to rely on their own balance.  Instructors vary drill and kids progress and over the course of the sessions you will find that kids move from group to group based on skill advancing groups as they work.


 Kids who work hard, push themselves outside of their comfort zone and have fun find progress faster and have a good chance of finding themselves on regular season teams quicker.


Good luck on the ice!

LTP Instructors

As your kids attend LTP you will see a varying group of instructors.  All are volunteers and experienced at different levels of Hockey.  Normally our Director of Youth Hockey is the key leader and he leverages both board members as well as various coaches and Asst. coaches from the CSYHA teams as may be available that day to help out.    


Additionally you will normally see a group of kids age 13-18 on the ice that are CSYHA players that also play High School Hockey for Cazenovia High School.  They are at the rink between HS practices waiting for CSYHA Bantam or Midget practices and they volunteer in their free time if they do not have too much homework to work with the LTP kids.  


Additionally, you will see some young adults out on the ice that are either SUNY Morrisvlle Ice Hockey Players and sometimes you will catch or coach or asst coach from the team.  

LTP is a community event and there is always a need for help on the ice.  Do not hesitate to thank the many volunteers that help the LTP program and should you want to help out on the ice you are more than welcome, just let the LTP coordinator know and we will get you started with the requirements for being on the ice.


By Director of Communication 10/01/2019, 3:00pm EDT

Help us help others!


Each season, Center State Youth Hockey collects the used hockey equipment generously donated by our families/players and provides it to anyone who wants to put it to good use!  (Many times,  it gets used by new players who are just beginning their hockey journey.)  We are doing so again this season!

So, what do YOU have in your closet, basement, garage or attic that is no longer being used by your hockey player?  This year, we can really use equipment in small sizes.  From October 7th-10th, you can bring donated equipment to the rink - someone will be there to collect it.  (All we ask is that nothing be broken or damaged in a way that can compromise a player's safety.) 

Do you need equipment for your player?  Join us at the rink on October 13th from 8 am to 11 am to see if we have something you can use. 

Should you have any questions, feel free to reach out to Kelly Leinbach at

Pee Wee (12U) Program to Host "Meet & Greet"

By CSYHA Communications Director 09/30/2019, 3:45pm EDT

On Sunday, October 6th at 10:15 am, our Pee Wee (12U) hockey program is hosting its first ever meet & greet! If you are looking for your first hockey "home" or trying to find a new one, come check us out!  Competitive hockey isn't just about competition... it's about learning and having fun, too!

Meet our coaches, current players, and learn more about what Center State can offer YOUR 12U player!

It will be held at Morrisville College's IcePlex on 105 Madison Road in Morrisville, NY.  If you have any questions, please don't hesitate to reach out to Coach Steve Nellis at 315-391-2566 or at!

Why High-Level Coaches Love Multisport Athletes

By Reprint from USA Hockey, By Mike Doyle, 09/03/19, 8:15AM MDT 09/12/2019, 2:45pm EDT

Developing the athlete first, then the hockey player

Picking a single sport at an early age does not guarantee athletic greatness. In fact, it could potentially be a hindrance.

A study by the Penn State College of Medicine polled professional, NCAA Division I and Division III hockey players about their athletic upbringing and found only 12 percent of the athletes specialized in the sport before they were 12. 

Youngsters specializing in a single sport at a young age can be more susceptible to overuse injury and don’t get the developmental athletic benefits of using different movements and muscle groups. 

“Strength coaches, who are the expert in the field, tell hockey players to do other things so they’re not overusing their skating muscles or if they’re soccer players to do other sports so they’re not always using their running muscles,” said Katie Lachapelle, Holy Cross women’s hockey head coach. “To be a well-rounded [athlete] is only going to help you when you do decide to target in on a sport.”

It’s not just a recommendation to play multiple sports – it’s best practices. Just look at the 2019 NHL Entry Draft prospect list, and you’ll see most of them have in common: they played multiple sports. 

Coaches should encourage multiple sport participation for a number of physical, mental and social reasons, all with the long-term goal in mind: developing the athlete first, then the hockey player.

Finding a Different Role

While a player might be a first-liner in hockey, he or she might find they’re not as apt at another game. Finding themselves in unfamiliar territory in the team dynamic can help with a youngster’s social development. 

“You might be really good at one sport and average at another, so to be able to be in different roles on different teams,” Lachapelle said. 

How a youngster handles not being at the top of the food chain can improve how they handle adversity and team dynamics as they get older. 

“How can you still compete? Maybe in lacrosse you’re not a starter but in hockey you’re one of the better players. OK, how do you react? How do you deal with it? Does that make you a better leader and understand everybody on the team? If you’re not the kid at the top of the ladder are you pushing yourself to get better?

“They have to challenge themselves and figure it out if they’re not in the same role.”

Learning from a Variety of Teachers

In youth hockey, it’s common for a player or group to have the same team for consecutive years. Whether it is a parent-coach moving along with his or her child, or a staff moving up with a specific team, players can be locked into the same coaching staff and teammates for a significant chunk of their early playing days. 

Playing other sports will expose kids to new experiences, new teammates and new teachers. 

“One of the biggest things is that you get to be with a bunch of different friends and athletes, and get different experiences with different coaches,” Lachapelle said. “I think sometimes in certain sports, you have a coach you’ve had since 10 because they keep moving up with your age group. So, you’re not exposed to different coaching or different ways to do things. You get locked into one way you lead or how you’re seen on a team.”

Highest Level Athletes Play Multiple Sports 

USA Hockey’s philosophy is to develop the athlete first, then the hockey player.

Lachapelle is an assistant coach with the U.S. Women’s National Under-22 Team. The ladies at the highest level played multiple sports throughout high school. 

“I would venture to say at least 85 percent of them played multiple sports growing up,” Lachapelle said. “Maybe more. And they were pretty darn good at those sports, just the way they work at their craft from a hockey standpoint.”

At Holy Cross, part of the team’s spring training includes an activity besides hockey. 

The team does speed-training workouts, street hockey, dodgeball and team handball. It wasn’t warm enough to play kickball this year, but it’s on the list of things to add into the mix. Tennis, squash and racquetball have become more popular activities of elite hockey players as well. Swimming is a refreshing and fun way to stay active and engage different muscles during the offseason. Biking is a fun and challenging way to get outside.

“It’s for fun but when you take a group of student-athletes, it quickly turns competitive,” Lachapelle said. “It’s a lot of fun and the team gets excited to play other things.” 

She also sees how players on her own squad react in playing different sports. 

“Someone who maybe doesn’t have a significant ice time role, you see them shine in those competitions,” Lachapelle added. “It’s nice to see, as coaches, the different roles people can take during the year. They don’t realize it’s happening, but when you’re watching as a coach, it’s really nice to see.”

My son and his hockey teammates celebrate a goal.