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Letter from the Northern Plains District Coach in Chief David Hoff

August 5, 2020



Coaches, Registrars, Coaching Directors, & Local Associations-


I hope each of you is doing well and enjoying the summer.  However, I do want to suggest that if you are planning to coach hockey for your local association that you go online to the USA Hockey website and find a virtual coaching certification clinic to attend.  You can take care of your certification for the coming season by sitting down a couple of nights and participating in a clinic with coaches from across the country.


Here are a couple of important points-

  1. Because of many issues including reduced budgets, there may be very few (and possibly none) in-person coaching clinics this season.  The budget will be very tight this year and we must be very efficient in our delivery of clinics- this means we have to strive to have clinics with 50 participants in them which does not happen in most of the areas of our district.  We also do not know what the restrictions will be for meeting rooms this fall.
  2. You can attend any virtual clinic that works for you.  Each clinic will list the city and state of the host, but as long as it is virtual (should be stated in the sub-title) and is the correct level, you are welcome to enroll.
  3. Most virtual clinics are 2 or 3 nights- depends on the schedule of the clinic staff.  The dates and times will be listed.  The clinic will be conducted using Zoom.
  4. You must plan to attend the entire clinic to get credit.
  5. Virtual clinics will probably be offered until sometime in December, but if you wait until the season starts you may have to be willing to miss a practice or game in order to complete your certification.
  6. **Virtual clinics fill up very fast so be prepared to enroll and grab a seat if you find something that works for you.  I have had many coaches tell me there were 20+ seats available the night before but gone the next morning.  Coaches from across the country are looking for these same clinics.
  7. There are virtual clinics posted every week as we are getting more and more staffs trained to host these clinics, so expect to see more clinics available as we move through August into September.


I have hosted about 10 clinics to this point- and I have really enjoyed the Zoom format.  It’s not perfect but the opportunity to visit and share ideas with coaches from all over the country has made a good learning environment.


**Temp Card Option- A reminder that any coach who needs Level 1, 2, 3, or 4 certification is eligible to receive temporary certification this year if they just do not feel comfortable with the in-person or virtual clinic setting.  We recognize this is an unusual year and have thus decided to make that option available to everyone.  HOWEVER, I would urge any coach who is currently a Level 3 coach to attend a virtual Level 4 clinic this year.  Do not take a Temp Card if you are currently a Level 3 coach as this is the last year to be grandfathered in as a Level 4 coach under the old system.  What does that mean?  Starting in the 2021-22 season any coach who receives Level 4 certification will be required to complete continuing education every 3 seasons.  Any coach who receives Level 4 certification before 12-31-20 will not be required to do continuing education unless they are coaching a Tier I or II team.


Please contact me if you have any questions-



David Hoff

Northern Plains Coach-in-Chief

Hello Coaches

Well it’s getting to be that time, time to bust out the gear and polish up the coaching credentials. MAHA will be having it's fifth annual "Hockey Summit" this season in Bozeman on Oct. 4-6. There will be a lot of support from USA Hockey and these will be the best clinics to attend this year. Please do what you can to attend these clinics as there will be fewer on the local level this season.

Below are the steps, in order, with appropriate links, that each coach will be expected to fulfill for the 2019-2020 season prior to December 31st, 2020;

  1. Background Check through MAHA (Free) -

  2. Register for season with USA Hockey  -
  3. SafeSport certification (Free to USA Hockey Members) -
  4. Register for and attend appropriate CEP Clinic - 
  5. Register for and complete the appropriate Age Specific Module

USA Hockey has an excellent page with many answers, clinic dates and links here:

Most of the links I have in the numbered section above can be found at this link, all except the MAHA screening link. USA Hockey puts a lot of effort into making its webpage an effective tool for coaches. I would suggest considering it one of your go to resources for improving as a coach and keeping current with the latest information.

As always, thank you for all that you do!

Pete Kamman

MAHA Coach-in-chief