Roger Neilson was not only an innovator of the game, but he was also an educator who began his professional life as a school teacher. As Roger’s coaching career took shape, so too did his desire to share his knowledge with his peers and aspiring coaches at every level. In the early 80’s Roger along with Dave Chambers, Tom Watt and Mike Keenan pioneered Coaching Symposiums for hockey before Roger Neilson’s Coaches Clinic was born in 1988 at the University of Windsor in Ontario, Canada.
In the earliest days of the clinic, it was commonly questioned why Roger (or any coach for that matter) would be willing to share their ‘trade’ secrets – when competition is fierce and the desire to find the winning edge paramount. Roger, in typical fashion, brushed the question aside and suggested that there aren’t really any secrets anymore… if someone wanted to know about his Power Play, all they had to do was watch the video.
Roger was always very generous, an entirely selfless man – and this extended to his passion for helping to educate coaches at every level, from minor hockey to pro. The guest speakers who fill our annual roster have adopted this same philosophy with great enthusiasm – and through their commitment to Roger’s vision have helped keep his legacy strong.
In 2014, Roger Neilson’s Coaches Clinic expanded to Banff, Alberta – one of the most spectacular destinations in all of Canada. Our clinics have always been about providing access to some of the game’s sharpest minds, in a relaxing and inviting environment that was made to measure by Roger. Ball caps, t-shirts and flip flops are almost essential – as is a strong desire to better yourself at your coaching craft. If you’ve never been a part of one of our clinics, we hope you’ll decide to give us a try – and see why so many pro coaches insist on attending each year. If you’ve been with us before… well, we can’t wait to see you again!
Director, Roger Neilson’s Hockey