To reach more players and fans through stronger MNAs and new offerings.

Build a targeted development program

A popular workshop tackled development with discussions on how ice hockey can expand globally with more hockey-playing countries, more players and better players, on which areas to focus and on the experience with the development initiatives by delegates from different countries. The goal is to provide very member national association with a clear path forward through targeted development. 

Create engaging promotional campaigns

What aspects of ice hockey should be promoted, what are challenges in the countries to help with promotion campaigns? A quick conclusion was that needs are very different. In bigger countries promotion is about attracting new players and fans, increase female participation. For some it starts already with the very basics such as having an ice rink and with accessibility to the sport.

Develop a fresh women’s hockey concept.

Women’s hockey has improved a lot during the last 10 years both in terms of quantity – registered players – but also in terms of quality with the top female players improving as athletes and the top teams playing at a higher level. However, the participation of female players is still far away from equal numbers between men and women. Delegates involved in women’s ice hockey discussed together with IIHF Council members Zsuzsanna Kolbenheyer and Marta Zawadzka the situation and challenges in their countries, what can be done so ice hockey won’t be perceived as a sport mainly for men and to take fear of danger away from parents since ice hockey is a safe sport for girls same as for boys. Other topics included retention to keep women in ice hockey longer or have women from ice skating sports join and get more support from clubs that are big on the men’s side. 

Establish a new 3-on-3 discipline.

3-on-3 ice hockey not only for practices but as a discipline was another topic where participants learned about existing examples of 3-on-3 events from the 2020 Winter Youth Olympic Games to the 3Ice League. One common determinator was the different aspects of 3-on-3 hockey. It can be used as a development tool in youth hockey played cross-ice and in countries that don’t have a full-size ice rink. But should it be 3-on-3 on the full ice sheet at pro level? Another question was if and in which form 3-on-3 ice hockey could become a discipline at the Olympic Winter Games with 2030 as the next-possible target.