The girls playing in the Global Sport Academy Group’s STIX Hockey program got a master class last night at Norma Bush Arena, Calgary. Glen Gulutzan, Head Coach of the Calgary Flames was on the ice for a full practice, taking some of Calgary’s elite young female hockey players through some of the drills he uses with his professional players in the National Hockey League (NHL).
Gulutzan played hockey in the Western Hockey League and Mestis League in Finland and went on to coaching assignments with the Dallas Stars and Vancouver Canucks prior to joining the Calgary Flames as Head Coach at the start of the 2016-17 season.
Global Sport Academy, based in Calgary, provides support for a number of sports that puts emphasis on the educational and leadership experiences of student athletes as well as the development of their sports skills. Their refreshing, positive approach includes the STIX Hockey program which finds the time and space on the ice for young men and women to have fun and be willing to take chances and explore their creativity. “Let’s make a lot of mistakes, let’s play with no fear”, says Mark Maloney, CEO and chief hockey coach, who also worked with the coaching team of the AHL Affiliates of the Dallas Stars.
Maloney’s philosophy flips around the conventions often heard from hockey coaches: “You build the person first, then the athlete second and the hockey player third” he told me. “If you develop an environment that is safe, emotionally, physically- it’s fun but it’s challenging, then the development of the player and the person moves in parallel” he added.
Thanks Glen for your time last night, sharing hockey stories offering encouragement and helping in the development of these young female athletes.
For more photographs from the STIX Hockey practice with Glen Gulutzan, please visit