By Rochelle Bergman
You hear it everyday, another study has confirmed this or that. Studies are done in all areas of life. There is even studies about studies! I don’t know about you but I am not impressed nor surprised any more with a study of any kind. So when I read this study, I first thought of not writing about it. Then I re-read it and thought of putting it in front of all the readers of our website.
This study was done by the University of British Columbia (UBC) in Canada. This peak performance study was done by professor James Brander (an economist) from the Sauder School of Business. The study was to give team management an idea when a player hits his peak performance age. This was to help build the best roster for the team. The study was done for defencemen, forwards, and goalies.
Now to the numbers!
Goalies vary little by age. Defencemen peak around 28 and 29 years of age. They can play at their best levels from 24 to 34. Forwards can peak at 27 and 28. They can play near their peaks from age 24 to 32.
This study confirms that by age 24, most players are playing the best hockey that they can, 90% of their best. It also confirms the conventional thinking of players peaking in their late 20’s. The study did blow some management’s wishes out with the jock- strap. No more wishing that a player can improve significantly in their mid-20s.
Most players hit their best around age 24 but remember there are late bloomers in every game. By these numbers a player can play great hockey at least for 10 years, give or take a few. That is impressive when you think about the physical part of the game, and the mental aspect of always being on top. Don’t forget all the injuries that a player can get and any other pressures of life. Is that why they get so much money?
This study is just that, a study. What it really means is that like other mortals, hockey players do get old and their bodies do get worn down. I know, we all thought that players are kind of G-d like creatures who don’t die out but float to a rink near them and play till they get to the rink in the sky.
So, what do you think about this study? Or the thought of the players being just mortals?