Hockey players are a different breed of athlete.
Need proof? Look no further than Montreal Canadiens defenseman P.K. Subban, who ordered a whole cow from a grain-fed farm at the beginning of the summer. He stores the meat at his parents' home, where his mom seasons the butchered meat that Subban picks up at the beginning of each week.
Yes, Subban will consume every last ounce of that butchered beef. Not a surprise considering he eats steak for breakfast and lunch nearly every day during the offseason.
For its "Off-Season Training Series," NHL.com spent a training day with three of the league's brightest young stars—Steven Stamkos, John Tavares and Subban—to reveal what these players are doing to take their game to the next level. What's even more appealing about the series, at least from a performance training standpoint, is the variety of each player's workout. In fact, the three routines used by these young guns comprise the perfect off-season hockey workout, which we compiled below. (Tavares' workout was split into two due to the extensive nature of his routine, thus making this a four-day program). Be sure to rest 24-48 hours between workouts.
Steven Stamkos, C, Tampa Bay Lightning
Last season: Netted 60 goals and led the NHL in scoring
Training goal: "With today's game, you need to be quick, fast and explosive on the ice, and that's what we try to focus on," Stamkos says.
Linear and Lateral Plyometrics (Workout 1)
- Lateral Bound Strides: 3x10 seconds
- Single-Leg Lateral Box Jump: 3x10 seconds
- High Box Jumps: 3x5
- Single-Leg Box Jumps: 3x5
- Barbell Squat Jumps: 3x6
- Lateral Shuffle Mirror Drill: 3x10 seconds
- Curved Treadmill Sprints: 10x15 seconds
John Tavares, C, New York Islanders
Last season: Scored 81 points in 82 games and finished among the league's top 10 in points.
Training goal: "I did a lot of exercises to develop my fast-twitch muscles to become much quicker and more dynamic," Tavares says. "Training those parts of my body really helped my stride and crossovers."
Lower-Body and Rotational Strength (Workout 2)
- Calf Raise: 2x15
- Quarter Squat: 2x10
- Squat Jump: 2x4
- Landmine Rotation: 2x6 each side
- Bus Drivers: 2x6 each side
- Keiser Core Rotations: 2x10 each side
- Cook Bar Rotation: 2x10 each side
Upper-Body and Core Strength (Workout 3)
Upper-Body Circuit (perform two rounds of circuit)
- DB Clean and Press: x3
- Pull-Up: x3
- DB Push-Up: x max reps
- DB Death Crawl: x4 each arm
- Seated Sled Pull: x10-15 yards
- Rope Waves: 4x35-45 seconds
Core Strength Series
- Reverse Physioball Rollout: 1x10
- Hover-to-Standing Plank: 1x10
- Sit-Ups: 1x10
P.K. Subban, D, Montreal Canadiens
Last season: Led his team in minutes played per game (just over 24 minutes) and had the highest point total among Canadiens defensemen.
Training goal: "As a defenseman, I've got to be able to move guys out in front of the net, so strength is a huge part of my game," Subban says.
Upper-Body Strength (Workout 4)
- Barbell Overhead Squat Warm-Up: 1x6-8
- DB Chest Press: 5x2, 1x5
- Weighted Wide-Grip Chin-Up: 5x2, 1x12 bodyweight only
- DB Incline Press: 3x6-8
- Single-Arm DB Row: 3x6-8
Photo Credit: Getty Images // Thinkstock