The sport of hockey shapes the landscape of a player’s body over time, and not necessarily for the better. In fact, it kinda makes us semi-mutants.
While your average rec player may not get the chance to look like Ryan Kesler or Zdeno Chara in ESPN the Magazine – lean, athletic, and cut – most of us do have a few other things in common. Let’s take a look, shall we?
Bauer Bumps (Shown above – the technical term is “Haglund’s Deformity,” also occasionally referred to as heel spurs. In the years since I’ve stopped playing, they’ve gone down considerably. I wear sandals every day and live in the desert. Please ignore the rest of my foot.)
It’s unfortunate for Bauer that they’ve become associated with heel spurs, but there does seem to be an alarming number of people who say they never had them until using Bauer skates. Then again, Bauer has a huge share of the hockey skate market, so it could just be guilt by association.
If you push off aggressively while skating and use a good amount of toe flexion (as the good skaters do – drive that toe into the ice), you’re essentially pushing your heel in to the back of your skate. Your skate responds by bouncing back and letting you skate like Michael Grabner.
This results in the wear-and-tear of your heels, as anyone who’s ever broken in a pair of skates has noticed. They’ve figured out the inner foot part of the break in pretty good – heels still get shredded.
Still, even long after your skates are broken in, that constant pressure is going to build a little callous back there. And build it, and build it, and build it. Mine were – as were my dad’s – patently ridiculous at one point in my career. You can cut them off, but I’m told they can grow back.
Wear them like a badge of honour, like a calling card. You’re a hockey player – you have Bauer Bumps. Congratulations.
If you play hockey with any consistency – as in, you’re a youth hockey player on the ice 3-4 times a week, or you’re a junior/college/pro guy on the ice 5-6 times a week, you know what I’m talking about. Hockey Ass, Hockey Quads.
The nature of the game requires a huge amount of push from your bodies biggest muscles. That means you ride the bike, you do squats, you do stops and starts, and if someone were to have some sort of imaging system that could show what muscles you’re using at any given time, those muscles would be blinking like Christmas lights in every phase of the game.
Thus, the boys at Gongshow Hockey have come out with a line of “Beauty Fit” hockey ass jeans, which I will be buying the second I hit post on this article. They’re obviously more loose in the quad and ass area, which is amazing.
Finding jeans is impossible for hockey players, especially if, like me, you have a taste for fancy jeans. Try to put on a pair of Sevens with hockey ass. Good luck with that.
I’m always super-proud when someone says “You played hockey? But you’ve got all your teeth!”
Uh-ah-ahhh, not so fast. One is fake.
That fake tooth is another piece of body erosion gifted upon me by the great game, and I’m proud of that (though I can’t get my teeth whitened without replacing that crown, which sucks).
My Dad has a seven-tooth bridge, all right up front, top row. Four on the bottom are knock-offs too. Duncan Keith has more than that missing. Half the guys don’t even both to throw in their fake ones they’re so used to the look, and just plan to get them fixed after they’re done playing.
The game shapes our bodies – noses, knees, brains and beyond – more and more the more we play.
What am I missing? Any other standard looks the game inflicts on us?