What Is A Healthy Pickup Hockey Game?

One of the bigger misconceptions we constantly face is that our platform is only valuable for weekly pickup hockey games that are struggling in attendance. It happens almost weekly that I’m told something like “I told our organizer about 20Skaters but our attendance is pretty good as we have 20 full timers”.

In truth, our best games are the healthy ones. They tend to be run by busy people who have little time to mess around each week. They have a good dedicated group of full timers. Our platform works instantly with groups like these. With these groups, we are able to ensure they have 20 every single week.

Even just moving from averaging 18 to 20 skaters, over the course of the season, can account for almost $1000 in additional money into the game which means lower fees for full timers next year….or a wicked end of season party! An additional $1000 means you can lower your fees for your 20 full timers by $50 next season!

When we’re working with games with consistently poor attendance, we do our best to support them to find and grow their roster, however, that’s not core to what we do. For those games we want them to get to a healthy spot and then we can best support them moving forward.

So, what is a healthy weekly pickup hockey game anyway? While we certainly have exceptions, such as some games with 0 full timers, here’s what we’ve witnessed.

20 Full Timers

You want 20 full timers. A full timer is someone who pays you in order to play in all your games. Doing this creates commitment since the more games they attend, the better value it is for them. If you don’t have 20, I personally have about 5 right now in my game, then you want to increase this each season until you get to 20.

Large, Engaged Sub List

Even with 20 full timers, you will almost never have a game where all 20 can play. Create a large, engaged list of subs. In the case you have 20 full timers, I’d suggest having 30 to 40 subs. You can prioritize those subs so I’d suggest putting as many players as you can into your last round. They’re only invited if you need them each week.

When I say engaged, you want players on the list who actually grab sub spots when they’re offered. It doesn’t hurt to have unengaged but you may as well remove players who literally never come out.

If you’re like me, on the low full timer side, then you really need a large sub roster, like 80+ hockey players. They are not committed, since they are only paying when they can play, and you need to find 15+ of them every week.

Improve Every Season

If you’re on the low end for full timers, start recruiting now for next season. Get commitments from subs now for next season, even get an early cheque. Make sure everyone knows you are looking for x new full timers for next year.

Sellouts Breed Sellouts

If you can achieve the above, you will start selling out on a weekly basis. Getting to consistent sellouts creates demand in your sub list. When players are looking at a soldout game page every week then they will jump to grab sub spots when they’re offered up. As well, they will make sure to attend your games and be a good citizen of your game because they know others are ready to grab their spot. We quite literally have games that now sellout within minutes of their email invites going out each and every week. You can get your game there too! We can help.