Lets face it boys, the era of men’s only beer leagues is fast coming to an end. Women’s hockey is growing at an exponential rate. It’s awesome for the sport of hockey and we should be welcoming these new additions and fresh blood into the community with open arms.

Now I know what you’re thinking…shut up goalie, what the hell do you know? Well, what I know is that the women that I’ve played hockey with over the last 10 years are capable teammates able to keep up with the “breathtaking” speed of beer league hockey. Some of these ladies dangle and snipe better than 85% of you friggin dusters, and I’d put money on that! So with the inevitable addition of these new players in a league near you I’ve come up with some “Do’s and Don’ts” for when you play with/against our MUCH better looking members of the hockey community.

  1. For the most part there will be a size disparity, this does not make it ok to steamroll them under the premise that “you play in men’s league you get treated like a man.” While we are all for equality and I can say with almost complete confidence that no female player wants you to play against her like she is made of porcelain, that doesn’t mean you should toss around your winter walrus weight when going into the corners. Biologically men are larger and carry more body mass/muscle on average than women (don’t let that get to your head, the word for it is latent and it means it’s the everyday muscle you keep up by moving your hefty ass around by default). This isn’t a dig girls, its biology… guys are bigger. Yes there are exceptions to every rule but before anyone launches into a tirade about “my cousins uncles dogwalker was the biggest woman ever and could kick your ass all over the ice”. STOP. While I’m sure Helga the dogwalker/Viking shieldmaiden could in fact turtle me all over the rink, she is still an exception. Back to my main point for this section… DO play against women like they are your equal on the ice, BECAUSE THEY ARE! They may even be your superior. DON’T be physical with them like they are of equal size unless they are. If you see that she is 96 pounds soaking wet holding a brick, and you’re a 265 pound keg of Labatt Blue on skates, ease up in the corners eh buddy?
  2. DON’T be a nudist in the locker room. Just because you’re comfortable “letting it all hang out” in the locker room doesn’t mean your opposite sex teammates have to be subjected to what I can only assume is an underwhelming show of why your birth certificate states “male.” Most of the time the rink will offer ladies a separate locker room to dress for games, practice, and shinny. But if they’re brave enough to endure the unbelievably average sights of a beer league locker room, it’s probably a good idea to wear a towel into the shower and take your undies with you. Second rule of thumb when there is a lady in the locker room is DON’T FUCKING STARE!! You’d think this would be common sense but apparently not. Hey we all know its natural and subconscious for a passing glance to happen in semi crowded quarters, but it is NOT ok to stare. I don’t care what cheesy 80’s porn you grew up watching but the “hungry eyes” routine is the fastest way to creep out your teammate and possibly weird her out to the point she doesn’t come back. It isn’t sexy, it’s not going to entice her, and as sure as I am that Tim Hortons should be a verified addiction, I’m positive you’re going to forever be labeled a creep faster than you’re going to initiate anything other than vomit from her.
  3. DO watch your fuckin’ mouths…by that I mean be aware of the words you’re using in the locker room, on the bench, on the ice, even in the bar after games. There are a few words that almost instantaneously illicit a negative response from all women. If you cant figure out what they are the tap the search bar on google and do some research. It’s poor form to drop these words around a new female teammate until you know for sure what bothers her and doesn’t, and don’t give me that horseshit that “they’re just words get over it.” Get a clue, you wouldn’t say 5% of the things you say in the locker room around your mom, so how about giving your teammate the same respect until you get to know em.
  4. DO stick up for her if some scumbag from another team or YOUR OWN decides he wants to mouth off and say some unsavory things to her. This includes if they play with you, against you, or even if they’re in stripes. It is the lowest form of degenerate action to speak to a woman with anything other than the respect she deserves as a teammate, opponent, or official. Some groups claim chivalry is sexist, I wholeheartedly disagree. While ancient chivalrous code is pretty sparse when it comes to women, modern chivalry can be adapted on the rink. If you hear someone say something disgusting to a woman it’s your duty as a good person to stick up for them. I’ve personally thrown down as a goalie with some Neanderthal who thought it was ok to try to intimidate one of the girls on a team of mostly girls that play in a local league I sub for. I’ve also tossed players as a ref for using language I found disgusting in an attempt to intimidate a female because she was single-handedly running up the score on their team. That kind of gutter class has no place in our game or in society in general. If you’re reading this and think it’s funny or would think about doing this how about you do us all a favor and come see me on the ice for a lesson in manners. One last point, women aren’t helpless guys. If someone says something she doesn’t like and she wants to give him what for… LET HER! But you better be right there to feed him knuckles if he lays a hand on her.
  5. DON’T be the guy that huffs and puffs when ladies show up to shinny or the pond, there’s a reason we say “hockey is for everyone”: BECAUSE IT IS!! They have just as much right to play during drop-in as you do. You don’t act like that when benders show up do you? No, because it’s another body for the game. So why the ridiculous overreaction when you see a woman take the ice? Get over yourself and just play the game. If you took the time and used as much energy getting to know them and playing like they are just another teammate you might actually find out that they are JUST LIKE ANY OTHER TEAMMATE!!
  6. Having a girl on your team doesn’t automatically make them “fair game” for your terrible pickup lines and advances. She’s here for the same reason as all of us, to drink beer and play hockey. If she was interested I’m sure she’d let that person know. What I can assure you of is she doesn’t want the awkwardness that follows a bunch of slobbering trolls whispering and talking shit about whose gonna land the “puck bunny”. Have some fuckin’ class boys! Your pathetic attempts at trying to win her affection are almost guaranteed to have one of two outcomes happen: 1. she’s completely weirded out and doesn’t come back or 2. she embarrasses you in front of the rest of the team and you never come back. Listen, I’m not one to stand here and tell you romance doesn’t happen around the rink, but let’s not force things because you’re delusional enough to think you’re hot shit (heard you struck out at a strip club bud). If anything, treat her like just another teammate and there wont be any weirdness at all because that’s how respect works gents, and that’s what our teammates deserve. So let’s put the boys club mentality to bed. Like in a bed 6ft under eh?

These aren’t the end all be all rules of playing with the girls, but they are a good starting point.


Cheers Beer Leaguers

Goalie Brian