The NHL/NHLPA First Shift

"The First Shift program has had an amazing impact on our association, in terms of growing our numbers, and bringing new energy into our program. 47 of 51 families re-enrolled for our January session, and we have a waiting list of 21 families. Our on-ice coordinator and his team did a fantastic job, and we look forward to hosting another program next fall."

- Tavistock Minor Hockey Association.


The NHL/NHLPA First Shift is a program designed to ease kids and their families into the sport of hockey in a fun and welcoming environment. It is open to boys and girls ages 6-10 years old, who have never registered to play hockey.


The registration fee is $199 for each participant and includes:

  • A Welcome Event - information, education, and an equipment fitting session
  • “Learn to Play” ice sessions, (managed by MHA)
  • A complete set of Bauer gear including: Helmet Combo (with facemask), shoulder & elbow pads, under protective top w/neck guard & shorts with jock/jill, pants, hockey socks, shin guards, jersey, gloves, stick & skates

For minor hockey associations, The NHL/NHLPA First Shift offers the following benefits:

  • The opportunity to bring new families into your hockey community, and increase membership
  • Bauer Support
  • Welcome event execution
  • Promotional program support
  • Positive media exposure
  • Head to toe equipment for participants
  • Coach kit including: gloves, stick, helmet and training suit (Coaches returning to a new program will receive a new stick)
  • Hockey Canada Support
    • On ice curriculum
    • Instructor criteria & education
    • Welcome event execution support
    • On going program support

For complete program information visit firstshift.ca

For additional questions and inquiries please contact thefirstshift@hockeycanada.ca


Together with minor hockey associations, we’ve offered 118 programs to local communities across Canada and the results have been overwhelmingly positive. Host Minor Hockey Associations across Canada were also extremely positive about the program, and the impact on their local communities.


“Let me say, last night’s meet and greet was a fantastic way to get started and meet new families. For the kids to be treated like little pros, to be fitted properly and leave with new equipment has boosted his confidence and excitement for playing. My son can’t wait to get started!”
- Parent, St. Catharines

“First ice time was a blast, I love how this has been such a positive experience so far. I know for my son, learning a new skill can be intimidating and scary. The coaches and the First Shift team have done an amazing job encouraging and making it an overall great experience.”
- Parent, Calgary