Summer 2017: The Novel

Every summer has it’s own story but mine is a novel, or well at least worth a blog post. 🙂

The summer of 2017 has been a very special summer for me. Not only because of all the travelling I have done but also because of all the new people I have met along the way while travelling. Although the start of my summer was not as planned with a knee surgery, it turned out to be the best summer I have ever had.

After my first year at university in Linköping ended mid June, I travelled home to Switzerd where I stayed with my family for one week. During that week, I met up with most of my friends from Zurich to catch up. It’s great to still have so many really good friends at home, although I’ve been living abroad for such a long time now (I think it’s been 8 years now). Not only did I meet up with all my friends, but I did a lot of physiotherapy and all that for my knee.

After this week in Switzerland, I packed a suitcase and lots of chocolate and got on a plane to Athens where I would meet up with approxiamtely 150 people from all over the world at the International Olympic Academy. This was without a doubt 2 weeks I will never ever forget anymore. I wrote a blog post every single day for the two weeks I was in Greece, so feel free to look these up and find out what I did there! It was an amazing time and the most amazing part was all the people I got to meet and got to know there. Friendships for life developed there in these two weeks.

These two weeks went over so fast, it was disappointing, but I got to spend another week in Switzerland again, which I always look forward to. Here again, I met up with friends and did lots of rehab and therapy for my knee. Then my next trip to Spain came around the corner.

First I was in Malaga, Spain for a couple of days with my friend Zuzana. We had an incredible time there and we also met up with Kris (a friend of ours from Canada) and his entire family for beach days and dinner and so forth. It was great to catch up with people I don’t get to see a lot at all throughout the hockey season or even the year. From Malaga, Zuzana and me went on to Granada for the first ever IIHF Goalie Development Camp. In that camp we were Goalie mentors, which was a challenging experience but yet again, was amazing. This too, you can read more about in my previous blog posts.

Straight from Spain, I took the plane to Zagreb, Croatia where I would spend another unforgettable time. My best friend from Sweden had her bachelorette party as well as her wedding there. It was great to meet her family and all her friends and being part of a croatian wedding! I wrote a blog post about this experience as well. At this point in time, my knee rehab was getting better and better, so I was able to start train a bit more intensively while being in Croatia, which was another great milestone for me.

After the 10 days in Croatia, I went back to Switzerland, but this time to Davos. Since my knee started feeling better and the trainings I did the previous week were going well, I decided to increase the pace again. I went to bike in the Swiss mountains a couple of time in order to do some conditioning training as well as get some strenght back in my legs. It was another great couple of days there.

My last trip this summer was to France. My two best friends from college in Boston and I were going to France for a week. Although the weather was the worst it could have possibly been, we had a great time. As France is known for their markets and the fresh food, we did exactly that. We went to a couple of markets, bought fresh cheese, meat and so forth and spoilt ourselves with delicious breakfast, lunch and dinner.

The last week before returning to Sweden was spent in Zurich again. I met up with friends again, did rehab and my training on a daily basis, met up with my new conditioning coach and had a photoshooting for Ochsner Sport. It seemed to have been the shortest week of all, just because I was so busy from morning till late evening every single day.

Now I am back in Linköping, Sweden. My 2nd year of my Master at Linköping University has started yesterday. Additionally did I go on the ice to do some skating the past two days. Although I am not wearing any equipment yet, it seemed to be going quite well. Hopefully I will be able to continue with my rehab like that, so that I will not miss the beginning of the season which is in September.

So this is pretty much what I have been up to all of this summer, it was a busy summer, with lots of travelling and I loved every single second of it! 🙂 I can’t wait to see what summer 2018 has to bring but first, the most important hockey season of all! 🙂

Thank you to everyone that made my summer so special!

xo

Florence

 

Conditioning Coach

Hi everyone,

Since the beginning of the new season is just around the corner and my knee rehab is slowly coming to an end, I am exremely happy to be working with Andrea Zryd for my off-ice practices.

Andrea and me have known each other for quite some time now. Not only have we actually worked together back in 2013/14 at the IIHF on several player tracking projects, but we also worked as athlete and coach together.

During the time when I played in the CWHL in 2012/13, Andrea put together all my off-ice workouts and we did a bunch of testing and that kind of stuff together. The biggest success came in the season of the Olympic Games in Sochi. I worked very closely with her during the entire summer, meeting her in Magglingen almost every Saturday for intense training sessions and did her programm once the season started all the way up to the Olympic Games.

As I was injured for most of last season and all summer, my off-season training has suffered a lot and I knew I needed a top notch conditioning coach that I trust, to put me back in shape as fast as possible. Thus I contacted Andrea again a bit over a month ago and asked her to work with me again.

Last Wednesday I travelled to Magglingen again to meet up with her, did some tests, looked at all of the exercises and figured out a plan. We’re going to be working on a lot of basic weight movements but then focus a lot on dynamic exercises to bring back the speed that I need as a goalie. The time frame is pretty much from now up until the Olympics and then the rest of the season until playoffs with Linköping.

I am extremely happy to work with her again, as I know I will be in the best shape possible for the key events this season and this is very motivating. Especially after a demotivating injury-driven last season and summer.

Stay tuned for more on my development!

xo

Florence

Croatia; an Unforgettable Experience

My dear friend Jelena got married!!!

I met Jelena almost two years ago in Linköping, Sweden when we both started with the Swedish language classes. She’s originally from Croatia and moved to Sweden to be with her boyfriend that is Croatian as well. Ever since we met in school in Linköping, Jelena and me have become really good friends and I was very excited to have received an invitation to her wedding…

It did not take me a lot of thinking until I accepted her invitation and booked my flight to go to Zagreb in Croatia. So this is what I’ve been up to the 10 days I was in Croatia.

I was able to be at her Bachelorette party, where we rented a house out in the woods, where we had a pool and a nice party area. It was an absolut blast! I got to meet all her friends and had a wonderful night celebrating Jelena. The day after the Bachelorette party, we made our way to the croatian seaside, to Cres. We spent a beautiful day at the seaside before we took the ferry back to mainland.

The rest of the week we stayed in Karlovac and would make a couple of trips to Zagreb. I was able to help Jelena with some of the wedding preparations and so forth.

I got to stay at her house with her entire family and let me tell you, I had the time of my life! I was almost overwhelmed by their hospitality, the way they made me feel like part of the family the second I got there. How they treated me and everything, I never had anything like that before. Needless to say, the language was a bit of a barrier at times, but made us laugh a little extra more when something else was said then what was supposed to be said.

Not only did I get a good laugh with the language barrier, but also because of the hilariousness of Jelena, her family and friends. In Croatia there is an expression to say “I’m here with the bike” when you are not following a converstion, so that sentence became a running gag for me during my stay. Let me tell you, I got really tired of biking after going everywhere with the bike… 🙂

As the wedding came around, I felt like I got more excited than Jelena, to be part of a Croatian wedding. The wedding culture was quite different from the one I got to experience in Switzerland and in Sweden, as well as in the US. Jelena looked absolutely gorgeous for the wedding and it was an incredible feast to celebrate the beginning of their wedding. The party started at 12pm on Saturday and lasted until 6am on Sunday and then again on Sunday starting at around 2pm…

I was exhausted after these 10 days Croatia, but I literally can’t remember the last time I was having such a good time for such a long time, it was literally an unforgettable experience!

A big thank you to Jelena, Denis and all the family and friends for making this stay an unforgettable one!

xo

Florence

Developing the Future

Hi everyone,

I already wrote about the entire prepartion for the IIHF Goalie Development Camp and the first day of the arrival of the participants. Now it’s time to talk about the actual camp, which was absolutely amazing, I loved every second of it! Too bad I had to leave early… 🙁

The first day of camp had a full schedule, like any other day at camp. It started with a 8am breakfast and then a classroom session where the girls would learn about the importance of nutrition, hydration, recovery and relaxation. After the first classroom session, the girls made their way to the ice rink where they would have their first ice session.

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As the most important element of a goalie is its skating skills, the first session was all about stance, balance and movement. No pucks! Joe Johnston had the lead in that practice and would run all the skating drills. The coaches and us goalie leads would support him and help out the goalies wherever needed. It was incredible to see the progress some of these goalies made during this first session. It really proves the importance of skating for goalies.

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After the first ice session, it was lunchtime in the restaurant close by the ice rink. It was a buffet restaurant, one like I’ve never seen before… There was so much to chose from, healthy and unhealthy, that it became even more important for the girls to understand the importance of healthy food choices in such a camp.

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After lunch they were off for a little bit before having a lifestyle classroom session and the second ice practice of the day. The focus on the second ice session was tracking of the puck. This time it was me and Zuzana who had the lead in this practice. We would explain all the drills and go around all nets and goalies to help them out. Our coaches would then run a net each. This was the first practice where the goalies would face some shots. It was a good practice even though not everything ran smooth.

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The first day was over after the last practice and dinner and the girls got their well deserved sleep. Although the day was over for the participants, it was far from being over for the coaches and us mentors. We had many more meetings, where we would plan out the next day, finalize the practices and especially debrief on the day and what should be improved upon for the next days.

That being said, it was a very short night. My group had an early wakeup and the first ice session of the day started at 8am with a focus on rebound control. This time, it was the coaches’ time to take the lead on the practices, and Zuzana and me would be on the ice for additional support if needed. We would still be helping out the goalies if we would see something, but mostly we would tell the coaches what we see and let them talk to the goalies directly. It was great seeing the goalies develop in such a short time, but also the goalie coaches were developing from practice to practice.

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I was really excited to see more, but unfortunately my journey in Spain at the IIHF Goalie Development Camp ended here as I would fly to Zagreb in Croatia that afternoon. 🙁

The participants had one more practice Friday afternoon with a focus on North/South, East/West movements and then two more practices on Saturday with focus on entries / net drive and low post, before flying home on Sunday.

It was a great experience for me and from what I heared all the participants. Hopefully the IIHF will host another camp like that in the future and hopefully I will get to be a part of that again! 🙂

xo

Florence