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Learn to Skate/Learn to Play Program

The Registration "Learn to Skate/Learn to Play Program" is not currently available.

The Registration "Learn to Skate/Learn to Play Program" is not currently available.

Learn to Skate/Learn to Play options

We offer 2 options for new skaters/hockey players.

LTS/LTP: Geared towards kids 3-9 who have never skated nor played hockey before. It's designed to provide kids the basics of skating independently and preparing them with the fundamentals of hockey in a non-competitive setting to start.

Register HERE


Learn to Skate/Learn to Play Schedule for 23-24 Program Season:
FULL LTS/LTP SEASON:  11/4/23 to 3/2/24
HALF LTS/LTP SEASON #1:  11/4/23 to 1/6/24
HALF LTS/LTP SEASON #2:  12/30/23 to 3/2/24​​​​​​​

Learn to Skate:

8-9am: Children ages 3 - 7 years old OR new to skating/using crates

9-10am: Children ages 5 - 9 years old OR beginner/ intermediate and not using crates

Learn to Play:

10am - 11am:  Beginner hockey learners for all ages

11am - 12pm:  Clinic and scrimmage for Intermediate hockey learners and Advanced LTP

All LTS/LTP skaters should plan to attend either the 8am or 9am LTS class based on their age/ability.  Children in the 9am LTS class are welcome to remain and participate in the 10am LTP class.  As children develop proficiency in their hockey skills, they will be invited to attend the 11am class as well.  

If you are not sure which LTS class your child should attend or if your child is skating proficiently enough to attend the 10am LTP class, please consult with one of the LTS/LTP coaches.  They would be happy to assess your child and make sure he or she is in the right class.

Advanced LTS/LTP: 

A new SYHA program option for kids who are ages 9 and older.  It's designed to provide kids who are developmentally ready for a more fast-paced introduction to the fundamentals of hockey and skating than our traditional LTS/LTP provides. 

Register HERE

Questions about which program is right for your child? email us:

Learn to Skate/Learn to Play FAQs

Somerville Youth Hockey Association provides an instructional level program for youth from ages 3 and up at Somerville's DCR Rink. This is a great opportunity to put on a pair of skates and learn skating and hockey basics. There is no pressure to join a team, but children who are interested can move onto a team during the season or wait until next year to play.

Learn to Skate/Learn to Play FAQs: 

When does it run?: The LTS/LTP program begins in November and runs through the beginning of March

Where does it take place?: Veterans Memorial Rink in Somerville

What time does it happen?: 

  • LTS with crates or skating aids: 8:00 - 8:50 am
  • LTS without crates: 9:00 - 9:50 am
  • LTP new to hockey/novice: 9:00 - 10:50 am
  • LTP intermediate: 11:00 - 11:50 am

What does it include? : 
Both LTS/LTP Programs Include:  
- Knowledgeable instructors - including coaches and players from SYHA, as well as players from older Somerville Youth Hockey Teams and Somerville High School 
- Weekly skating lessons on Saturdays that starts kids off with the support they need to work their way to independent skating.
- If your child is new to skating, we recommend they attend the 8 am slot. As they progress and are able to skate with a crate or training aid, they are welcome to stay for both LTS hours. As your child gains interest in hockey, encourage they to attend the 2nd LTS hour and stay for the 1st LTP hour. 

- Registration includes both LTS and LTP for one fee. All skaters start with LTS unless directed otherwise. 

How we will know when it's time to start LTP? : All LTS skaters are evaluated on an ongoing basis. When a LTS coach determines that a skater has demonstrated sufficient proficiency, the coach will notify the skater's parents that their child is ready to attend LTP in addition to LTS. This ensures that each child has mastered the fundamentals of skating enough to participate safely in learning hockey. Please keep in mind that different children are ready at different times. Also, there is no obligation to participate in LTP if a child is not interested, but the fee remains the same.

What is the minimum equipment required for LTS? : Equipment includes hockey skates, warm gloves, and helmet (bike helmet is allowed). However, SYHA highly recommends hockey helmets with a cage for LTS because they protect the face if a skater falls face-forward. Also, if a child falls and is lying on the ice, the helmet's cage shields the face from the sharp blades of other people's skates. Additional hockey gear (see next bullet point) helps cushion falls but is not required.

What is the minimum equipment required for LTP? :  Full hockey gear--hockey skates, hockey helmet with cage, hockey shin pads, hockey elbow pads, hockey pants, hockey socks, shoulder pads, hockey gloves, and stick. SYHA has a limited amount of donated, used and good-condition equipment. If you would like to borrow equipment, please email our equipment manager, Rich, to set up an appointment for your child to get fitted. Email with "Attention: Rich" in the subject line. Alternatively, hockey equipment is available at Play It Again Sports (used and new), PureHockey in Medford, and Sports Etc. in Arlington.

What are the rinks like?:  Rinks can be cold for some players. Please dress your skater appropriately with lots of layers, layered gloves/mittens if needed, and even a thin winter hat that can fit under the helmet. We will have hand warmers and toe warmers at the rink.  

Can my child walk outside with skates? : NO! Skate guards protect the metal blades of skates.  Skate guards designed for walking are a must when a skater is walking anywhere other than on the black, rubber matting inside the rinks. Skaters should never walk with bare blades on concrete; this damages the blades. Skates at this level should be sharpened about every 8-12 hours of ice time or if they get nicked. Skate sharpening is offered at most hockey gear stores (PureHockey, Sports Etc. and pro shops at rinks).

I want to volunteer -What's involved? : Parents who would like to volunteer to help on the ice (or off the ice) are welcome!  Please email us at with subject line: "I want to volunteer!" All on-ice volunteers must have an annual USA Hockey number, a cleared background screening through USA Hockey, and certification in SafeSport training. We take these safety requirements very seriously and will not allow any parent volunteer (or coach) on the ice without them. Once you have them, please send them to our Director Of Rules, Chris DeAngelis, via our email address, Parent volunteers are expected to help support not only their own child(ren) while on the ice but other children as much as they can. 


Contact us with any questions or requests for scholarships.  We will not turn any child away that wants to learn to skate or play hockey. 


LEARN TO SKATE – Elbow and knee pads, hockey helmet with face cage (no bike helmets) and hockey skates.  We do not supply helmets or skates.

LEARN TO PLAY HOCKEY – Elbow and knee pads, chest protector, shin guards, hockey helmet, hockey gloves, hockey pants, hockey socks, hockey protector cup.  We have some donated equipment to give out so come see us.  

(We do have some equipment bags for FIRST TIME PLAYERS only, first come-first serve)


Click Here!

How to Get Dressed for Hockey

Wondering how your new player needs to dress for hockey?

This video, courtesy of USA Hockey, is a step-by-step instruction of how to get dressed to play hockey. This video can be utilized with current growth models to teach parents and new players how to get dressed. Click Here to watch

How To Dress Like A Hockey Player