Shuttle Cross Pick-Up
This test is a hockey specific hand-eye coordination and agility test, performed off-ice though set up to replicate some of the on ice abilities required of ice hockey players. It is one of the tests of the SPARQ rating system for hockey, and the SPARQ protocol details are listed here.
- purpose: this is a test of hand-eye coordination and the ability to change direction (agility).
- equipment required: stopwatch or timing gates, measuring tape, 2 marker cones, 3 octagonal (SPARQ Agility Web) rings, 2 SPARQ Quick React Balls are preferred (tennis balls also OK), a flat non-slip surface.
- procedure: The cones and rings are laid out in the cross pattern as shown in the diagram, distances to the center of each ring or cone. A ball is placed in the ring at position C and E. The athlete stands at the starting line (A) in two-point athletic stance, holding the set position for 2 seconds. If using hand-timing, athlete begins in a 2-point (standing) athletic stance on the start line. Hand-timing begins on athlete’s first movement. If timing with an electronic start/finish beam, athlete should start from a line marked 50 cm (20 inches) behind the timing beam to minimize premature breaking of beam due to arm swing. On the command 'go', the athlete sprints forward to center cone (B), running left around it to ring (C) to pick up the ball. They then sprint back across the center cone (B) to the opposite ring (D) to place the ball in the ring. They then sprint back to the center, around cone to ring (E) for second ball pick-up and finally sprint back through the start/finish line (A) with the 2nd ball in their hand.
- scoring: Two attempts are allowed. Record the fastest time in seconds to complete the circuit as described by the protocol. A dropped ball disqualifies the trial. The times are also disqualified and not recorded if the athlete uses a rolling start, does not hold for 2 seconds, starts in a 3-point or 4-point stance, or starts with foot across start line. The trial is also nullified if the athlete fails to perform the left and right-hand turns as instructed by protocol, and if they fail to place the ball in ring or fails to carry the 2nd ball through the finish line.
- target population: ice hockey
- comments: The total running distance is 50 meters, and the test requires both right and left turns with 3 stop/starts.