Taping your hockey stick is much more of an art than a science. There’s no wrong or right way to do it, so there’s many variations. Hockey players tape their sticks for multiple reasons, but it mainly comes down to personal preferences.
How to Tape Your Hockey Stick - The Why
The biggest benefit of taping your hockey stick is control. Composite hockey sticks have some tactile grip on the blade, but they don’t give you the same control and feel that tape provides you. Tape can also help to protect your blade from damage. By giving it a small barrier from the ice, skates and other sticks, it can help to prolong the life of your stick.
Taping your hockey stick can also help to keep moisture and ice from building up, which can make the puck slip off the blade.
Taping your blade can provide a small cushion that allows you to catch and release the puck off your stick when receiving passes. This can also give the blade a stronger feel.
Taping your hockey stick blade can also offer more surface protection. Hockey sticks take a literal beating during a game. Efficiently taping your blade can help protect against this and reduce hairline cracks from spreading.
If you tape the handle of your stick, it can give you more control with your top hand when passing and shooting. It is very beneficial for defensemen, who need to control their stick with their top hand while playing. Added control helps when they poke check and defend against opposing players.
How to Tape Your Hockey Stick- The How
As there’s no correct way to tape a hockey stick, doing it for the first time can be somewhat overwhelming. When using a hockey grip tape like VukGripz, you can reduce some of that pressure. VukGripz tape can be removed and reused if you aren’t happy with the placement or style. This means you can try different styles without having to purchase multiple grip tapes.
Wrapping Your Hockey Stick - The Blade
You can start wrapping your hockey blade from either the toe or at the bend of the stick. There is no particular benefit from either, it is purely a matter of preference. As you start wrapping, go slowly so that you do not allow the tape to bunch up or wrinkle. You want your blade wrapping to be smooth.
Another popular style involves taping the toe of your stick and ending at the halfway point of the blade. This can be beneficial to players who take quick shots and use toe drags. The only drawback is that it leaves the back part of the blade unprotected from damage.
The mid-blade wrap is another widely used option where you tape only the part of the blade where it makes initial contact with the ice. This is mostly good for players who take wrist shots. With this method, both the heel and the toe are left unprotected.
Wrapping Your Hockey Stick - The Handle
It is helpful for some players to have a knob on the top of the stick. It can help to secure your grip. You can make the knob as big or small as you would like- it just comes down to which you prefer. Simply wrap the hockey tape around the butt of the stick to your desired size and then wind it down the shaft about 10-12 inches to ensure a good grip.
One of the more popular styles, especially for younger players, is the candy cane handle. This method provides ridges for added grip, which can give you a more controlled feel. Using your hockey tape, you start right by the butt end and wrap around the stick with 1-2 inches in between each wrap. Continue wrapping until you reach your desired length. Keep in mind that as your hockey skill progresses, this type of wrap will inhibit your ability to slide your hand. Higher skilled players like the ability to remove and slide their hands if necessary while playing.
For a variation of this style, you tear off about 12 inches of tape and twist it up. You then wind this length around the shaft for 8-12 inches and cover it with more tape to create a more preferable grip.
How to Tape Your Hockey Stick - The Wrap Up
Ideally, your stick should get a new tape job after every game. This can get expensive and time consuming. If you are just practicing and playing recreationally, you can wait until your tape is showing signs of wear and tear before you re-tape. To get rid of old tape, you’ll need to cut it off.
As you play and use your stick, you will develop a wrapping technique that most fits your needs. Practice makes perfect and soon you will be wrapping your hockey stick like a pro.
VukGripz hockey tape offers you the most technologically advanced and efficient grip tape on the market. The design involves millions of micro-replicated speed bumps to provide premium friction between your hands and the stick. It will make your shots more accurate and your passing cleaner.No matter what method you wrap your hockey stick with, using VukGripz hockey tape is the one thing you should always keep the same! VukGripz offers many great products for use in many sports.