Sledge hockey is a high energy, fast paced team sport for individuals with a physical disability played all over the world. It is currently the most popular Paralympic sport.
Sledge hockey is an innovative team sport that incorporates the same rules and discipline structure as regular ice hockey. Sledge hockey players sit on specially designed sleds, or ‘sledges’, with skate blades under the seat. The sticks have a curved blade at one end and six to eight picks at the other end that are used for maneuvering the sled. All hockey gear (helmets, shoulder pads, gloves, etc.) is required to play sledge hockey.
In Canada, Hockey Canada governs the sport of sledge hockey. For more information on sledge hockey, visit the Hockey Canada website at: Hockey Canada Sledge Hockey
The PEI Ice Breakers Sledge Program
ParaSport and Recreation PEI have a Sledge Hockey Program that they operate and manage – PEI Ice Breakers Sledge Hockey Program. The program is open to able bodied players as well as players that have physical disabilities.
This program has been developed through the legacy of Hockey PEI and ParaSport and Recreation PEI hosting the 2008, 2009, 2016 and 2017 World Sledge Hockey Challenge with Hockey Canada.
For more information on the PEI Ice Breakers sledge hockey program visit: PEI Ice Breakers
Sledge hockey is the Paralympic version of Ice hockey and, since its debut on the Paralympic program at the 1994 Lillehammer Paralympic Winter Games, it is quickly becoming one of the biggest attractions for spectators at the Paralympic Winter Games. It is fast-paced, highly physical and played by athletes with a physical disability in the lower part of the body.
Like hockey, each team has six players on the ice, including the goaltender. Teams are comprised of a maximum of 15 players per team, including two goaltenders. To be eligible to compete at the Paralympics, athletes must have a disability of permanent nature in the lower part of the body that precludes their participation in standing hockey.
Sledge Hockey is governed by the IPC (International Paralympic Committee) through the International Paralympic Ice Hockey Committee. It follows the rules of the International Ice Hockey Federation (IIHF) with a few modifications.
To participate in IPC competitions and sanctioned events (i.e. Paralympic Winter Games), athletes must have an impairment of permanent nature in the lower part of the body of such a degree that it is obvious and easily recognizable and makes ordinary skating – and consequently ice hockey playing impossible.
Examples include amputation (leg, foot), paresis (loss of 10 muscle points in both legs), joint immobility, cerebral palsy and leg shortening of at least 7 cm.