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krisdrum

Finding my curve

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I'm a relative beginner, getting into the sport as an adult because of my son.  Took some skate lessons, do the occasional stick and puck session.  But am pretty much a "bender"/newbie/pylon out there.  But I want to focus a bit more on my own playing.  How much of a different can a curve make?

Been using a P92/29/E3 curve for awhile as I knew it was popular and pretty standard.  I was always kind of neutral on it, not love or hate, just there, and I didn't know anything else.  A few weeks back I picked up some used sticks cheap that have a PM9/E4 curve and am really enjoying them for passing and stick handling.  I think I like the more closed face and "flatter" profile for more consistent/predictable results.  But I've noticed my shot has suffered a bit (not that it was ever really good), and I really need to focus on keeping the puck on the heel to start my shot. 

Which got me thinking... what else have I been missing out on by not exploring other curves.  P88 and P28 are both intriguing to me.  P88 looks like basically a more closed P92.  P28 looks similar to the PM9 heel to mid blade, but with the addition of a hook on the toe.  My son has old sticks with both curves (although the youth/junior versions) that I've messed with a bit.  P88 seems a good middle ground, more consistent response, so I am thinking I like a more closed blade.  P28 was very easy to shoot off the toe and flick my wrist to get elevation (it was also on a 20 flex, so maybe not a great trial run).

What should I do to narrow down to a curve or two I like, so as I ramp up my time using it, I can start to really understand how to use it consistently?

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Background: started playing at age 33 about 5 years ago. With a lot of practice and work (including an amazing shooting class where I learned a ton), I have progressed up 4 levels and consistently lead my mid-level beer league teams in scoring.

P88/P92 are both great starting points. You can get comfortable with either with enough practice. I would pick one and commit to it for awhile. I think you'll gain more from consistently using one of the mainstream curves than frequently changing things up. After you get settled on one curve, if you notice something you want to fix (let's say, elevating the puck on shots) make the smallest adjustment possible to try to fix that (e.g. going from P88 to P92).

I started with P88 and with enough practice was able to shoot fine enough and didn't have any issues getting pucks higher. When I tried a P92, everything sailed and I felt like I regressed in stickhandling and other areas. Went back to P88 and never looked back (except brief tryst with P30...RIP).

Sticks with more open toes like P28 are a lot less forgiving and I would never recommend one for a beginner. Great if you shoot off the toe (which I would recommend looking into instead of rolling heel-to-toe, completely changed my shot and made progressing to snap shots easier) but very hard for low-level players to control.

Edited by johns25

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3 hours ago, krisdrum said:

I'm a relative beginner, getting into the sport as an adult because of my son.  Took some skate lessons, do the occasional stick and puck session.  But am pretty much a "bender"/newbie/pylon out there.  But I want to focus a bit more on my own playing.  How much of a different can a curve make?

Just ensure you are working with a stick whose lie is correct for you.

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38 minutes ago, caveman27 said:

Just ensure you are working with a stick whose lie is correct for you.

Ok, so how do I determine that?  The E4 (lie 5) I am liking I know has a slightly lower lie than the E3 (lie 5.5) I've been using.  Can you point me to an article or video to help me figure out the right lie?

 

And is it really only about lie?  Or adjusting stick length to work effectively with the lie?

Edited by krisdrum

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Blade lie can be compensated by tweaking the overall length of the stick. For example, most Bauer P92's are a lie 6. When I used P92's I would cut them a little shorter than normal. That helped me get more blade on the ice.

Edited by stick9

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1 hour ago, krisdrum said:

Ok, so how do I determine that?  The E4 (lie 5) I am liking I know has a slightly lower lie than the E3 (lie 5.5) I've been using.  Can you point me to an article or video to help me figure out the right lie?

 

And is it really only about lie?  Or adjusting stick length to work effectively with the lie?

Nevermind, I found some videos.  I'll take a look, but think the 5 lie is flatter on the ice than the 5.5 lie is.  I know my toe tends to come up a bit with that curve. 

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2 hours ago, krisdrum said:

Nevermind, I found some videos.  I'll take a look, but think the 5 lie is flatter on the ice than the 5.5 lie is.  I know my toe tends to come up a bit with that curve. 

Blade lie does matter, but in reality your mechanics will adjust to any lie with a bit of time.  I adjust to a new lie easily after about 15 minutes of ice time, but I have been playing for 44 years.  A less experienced player should be able to adjust within a couple of hours.  As @stick9 mentioned, you really just need to figure out the proper length for each lie/curve combination.

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4 hours ago, krisdrum said:

Ok, so how do I determine that?  The E4 (lie 5) I am liking I know has a slightly lower lie than the E3 (lie 5.5) I've been using.  Can you point me to an article or video to help me figure out the right lie?

 

And is it really only about lie?  Or adjusting stick length to work effectively with the lie?

 

This is a pretty good video about that. 

I also use a 5 lie stick. I had a 6 lie stick and things were wacky. Since the tip was up while the heel was down, more often than not, my passes and shots would get flubbed.

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2 hours ago, stick9 said:

Blade lie can be compensated by tweaking the overall length of the stick. For example, most Bauer P92's are a lie 6. When I used P92's I would cut them a little shorter than normal. That helped me get more blade on the ice.

That's true, but you want to optimize stick length with your playing style (defense usually use longer shaft, forwards usually use average or shorter shaft for the most part) and then you adjust your lie around that. 

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10 hours ago, johns25 said:

Background: started playing at age 33 about 5 years ago. With a lot of practice and work (including an amazing shooting class where I learned a ton), I have progressed up 4 levels and consistently lead my mid-level beer league teams in scoring.

P88/P92 are both great starting points. You can get comfortable with either with enough practice. I would pick one and commit to it for awhile. I think you'll gain more from consistently using one of the mainstream curves than frequently changing things up. After you get settled on one curve, if you notice something you want to fix (let's say, elevating the puck on shots) make the smallest adjustment possible to try to fix that (e.g. going from P88 to P92).

I started with P88 and with enough practice was able to shoot fine enough and didn't have any issues getting pucks higher. When I tried a P92, everything sailed and I felt like I regressed in stickhandling and other areas. Went back to P88 and never looked back (except brief tryst with P30...RIP).

Sticks with more open toes like P28 are a lot less forgiving and I would never recommend one for a beginner. Great if you shoot off the toe (which I would recommend looking into instead of rolling heel-to-toe, completely changed my shot and made progressing to snap shots easier) but very hard for low-level players to control.

 

How did you like the P30 vs. the P88? I have a P30 now and I find it plays pretty much exactly like the P88, but I can cup the puck with the toe hook if I want to drag it or get off a quick snapshot.

I've only had a chance to use it a couple times so haven't come to a conclusion yet but I'm really liking the potential so far and find it an easy adaptation from the P88.

 

colins

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12 hours ago, caveman27 said:

That's true, but you want to optimize stick length with your playing style (defense usually use longer shaft, forwards usually use average or shorter shaft for the most part) and then you adjust your lie around that. 

I wouldn't get too caught up in length per player position. Especially since there are only a couple different lies available. 

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1 hour ago, stick9 said:

I wouldn't get too caught up in length per player position. Especially since there are only a couple different lies available. 

Well, a player can have whatever length suits that person regardless of position. I understand that.

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19 hours ago, krisdrum said:

Ok, so how do I determine that?  The E4 (lie 5) I am liking I know has a slightly lower lie than the E3 (lie 5.5) I've been using.  Can you point me to an article or video to help me figure out the right lie?

 

And is it really only about lie?  Or adjusting stick length to work effectively with the lie?

It depends how you carry the puck. If its more inside a lower lie if more out front its a higher lie.

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15 hours ago, caveman27 said:

 

This is a pretty good video about that. 

I also use a 5 lie stick. I had a 6 lie stick and things were wacky. Since the tip was up while the heel was down, more often than not, my passes and shots would get flubbed.

Thanks, one of the many videos I found that helped me better understand.  Pulled the trigger on a cheap P88 stick on swap last night, so I'll have something in my hands to mess with in a few days.  Then I can narrow things down from there. 

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13 hours ago, colins said:

How did you like the P30 vs. the P88? I have a P30 now and I find it plays pretty much exactly like the P88, but I can cup the puck with the toe hook if I want to drag it or get off a quick snapshot.

I've only had a chance to use it a couple times so haven't come to a conclusion yet but I'm really liking the potential so far and find it an easy adaptation from the P88.

Basically this. The shooting clinic I listed above is run by Scott Bjugstad and he says he worked with CCM to develop the P30 for exactly what you describe. Don't get too used to it unless you're going to stock up on sticks.

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I recommend sticking within the 3 curves that are available P92, P88, P28.  If you're buying any sticks with "dead curves" if you fall in love with them you're just going to have a hell of a time trying to find replacements down the road.  For a beginner I'd recommend the P92 or P88 both offer pros and cons.  Personally I have used the P88 since I was a little kid and have tried the P92 and the P28 but always go back to the P88 it just works for me.

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5 hours ago, getthekidthepuck said:

It depends how you carry the puck. If its more inside a lower lie if more out front its a higher lie.

I think you have this backwards.  Wouldn't a lower lie keep the puck further in front of you and have a bigger angle between the blade and shaft, making it harder to work in close to your feet?

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1 hour ago, strosedefence34 said:

I recommend sticking within the 3 curves that are available P92, P88, P28.  If you're buying any sticks with "dead curves" if you fall in love with them you're just going to have a hell of a time trying to find replacements down the road.  For a beginner I'd recommend the P92 or P88 both offer pros and cons.  Personally I have used the P88 since I was a little kid and have tried the P92 and the P28 but always go back to the P88 it just works for me.

Yeah, it is a bit of a shame the economies of scale are shifting towards just 3 basic curves.  Actually one of the reasons I brought up the question after finding a curve I dig, but that is quickly becoming obsolete.  I'm concerned with spending too much time getting used to it or really falling in love and them having to adjust again when they are all gone.  I figure I might as well take this time to explore a bit and see what the most popular curves have to offer.

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1 minute ago, krisdrum said:

Yeah, it is a bit of a shame the economies of scale are shifting towards just 3 basic curves.  Actually one of the reasons I brought up the question after finding a curve I dig, but that is quickly becoming obsolete.  I'm concerned with spending too much time getting used to it or really falling in love and them having to adjust again when they are all gone.  I figure I might as well take this time to explore a bit and see what the most popular curves have to offer.

It is kind of a bummer that the different choices in curves are going the way of the dodo.  The nice thing is with proper technique you really can learn to use any curve.  Like I said I only use the P88 but have tried the other 2 and with a few minutes to adjust to a P92 or P28 I could easily use them as well if I had to.   I am just so comfortable with the P88 and it is still available so why switch it has worked for the past 20ish years for me so I don't see a point.  Good luck in your search.

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1 hour ago, krisdrum said:

I think you have this backwards.  Wouldn't a lower lie keep the puck further in front of you and have a bigger angle between the blade and shaft, making it harder to work in close to your feet?

Correct.  Lower lie is for further from the body (because the stick would be longer) and higher lie is closer to the body.

Personally, I have been using P88 for years.  I've been toying with the idea of going to a P92 to get a little more lift on shots and sauce without having to lift my hands as far.  The downside is the rounded, rockered toe is not quite as good for board battles or breaking up plays on defense.  I'll also need a lie 5 because of the length of my stick.  I tried p28.  It had too much rocker and required too much technical precision to be consistent.  It was spectacular when it worked.  But terrible when it didn't.  P30 was also really good - it's a mix of P88 and P28 with the good parts of each and not so much of the bad.  I got a lot of performance out of it without the need for as much precision.  But I just don't like CCM sticks, and now it looks like a good thing with it going away.  There are some other good options I like - P10, P90T possibly.  But when it comes down to it, I just keep going back to one of the retail curves because they are just more widely available.

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3 hours ago, psulion22 said:

Correct.  Lower lie is for further from the body (because the stick would be longer) and higher lie is closer to the body.

Personally, I have been using P88 for years.  I've been toying with the idea of going to a P92 to get a little more lift on shots and sauce without having to lift my hands as far.  The downside is the rounded, rockered toe is not quite as good for board battles or breaking up plays on defense.  I'll also need a lie 5 because of the length of my stick.  I tried p28.  It had too much rocker and required too much technical precision to be consistent.  It was spectacular when it worked.  But terrible when it didn't.  P30 was also really good - it's a mix of P88 and P28 with the good parts of each and not so much of the bad.  I got a lot of performance out of it without the need for as much precision.  But I just don't like CCM sticks, and now it looks like a good thing with it going away.  There are some other good options I like - P10, P90T possibly.  But when it comes down to it, I just keep going back to one of the retail curves because they are just more widely available.

You could try the W28 from warrior. It's a little less open and not as deep as Bauer's P28. I find it a bit more manageable.

Bauer's P14 was the dream curve. Too bad it's gone and I've already stock piled 28's.

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I would also suggest a P88 for relative beginner. It's a great all around curve, doesn't make any big compromises. Stickhandling, backhands, wrist shots, there's nothing the P88 does really bad and it's pretty forgiving. If you want to stick with retail options that's a good one.

If you want to play around, its not too hard to find some other great options via the pro stock route like mentioned already:

- P30, essentially a P88 up to the middle of the curve and then it provides a toe kink and at the end for toe drags / pocket for snapshots.

- P90T, often described as a hybrid between the P88 and P92. 

- P19, aka Nugent-Hopkins, this was a pretty popular CCM curve a few years back. Slightly open towards the toe but less aggressive than the P92.

For someone who masters the P88 and wants to add some enhancements that aren't too radical but can provide some benefit beyond the P88 the above are 3 options worth checking out.

 

colins

 

 

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3 hours ago, stick9 said:

You could try the W28 from warrior. It's a little less open and not as deep as Bauer's P28. I find it a bit more manageable.

Bauer's P14 was the dream curve. Too bad it's gone and I've already stock piled 28's.

P14 was a great curve, but the blade was too short.  Likewise, P10 may have been the best curve, but the blade is too long.  A regular/medium length P14/P10 would be incredible.

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9 hours ago, psulion22 said:

P14 was a great curve, but the blade was too short.  Likewise, P10 may have been the best curve, but the blade is too long.  A regular/medium length P14/P10 would be incredible.

 

I left the P14 out of my last reply for the same reason. Personally it always felt/played a bit short for my preference.

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On 1/14/2020 at 6:35 PM, johns25 said:

Background: started playing at age 33 about 5 years ago. With a lot of practice and work (including an amazing shooting class where I learned a ton), I have progressed up 4 levels and consistently lead my mid-level beer league teams in scoring.

P88/P92 are both great starting points. You can get comfortable with either with enough practice. I would pick one and commit to it for awhile. I think you'll gain more from consistently using one of the mainstream curves than frequently changing things up. After you get settled on one curve, if you notice something you want to fix (let's say, elevating the puck on shots) make the smallest adjustment possible to try to fix that (e.g. going from P88 to P92).

I started with P88 and with enough practice was able to shoot fine enough and didn't have any issues getting pucks higher. When I tried a P92, everything sailed and I felt like I regressed in stickhandling and other areas. Went back to P88 and never looked back (except brief tryst with P30...RIP).

Sticks with more open toes like P28 are a lot less forgiving and I would never recommend one for a beginner. Great if you shoot off the toe (which I would recommend looking into instead of rolling heel-to-toe, completely changed my shot and made progressing to snap shots easier) but very hard for low-level players to control.

Can you explain what progressing 4 levels mean? Is there a standard in Canada (I think thats where your are from) for different levels? Please elaborate, how many levels there is etc 😄

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