Watch How Hockey for the Blind Is Played

Friday November 8th, 2013


Hockey might not be the first sport you would think appealing or even possible for blind athletes, but some ingenious innovations allow it to be played at a fairly high level:

The game is played with an oversized, hollow puck (5.5 inches in diameter) that has ball bearings on the inside. The puck, which moves more slowly than traditional rubber discs, loudly clangs as it glides to help players track its movements. Goals may only be scored in the bottom three feet of the net and one pass must be completed after the center red line before a team can attempt to score. In the accompanying video, the goalies are all essentially completely blind.

What stood out to me is the referees in the above clip, who are obviously not blind. Very rarely in sports do the refs and the players experience the game in wholly different ways -- e.g. as a visual game vs. a game of sounds.


The Hockey News Reddit
SI Apps
We've Got Apps Too
Get expert analysis, unrivaled access, and the award-winning storytelling only SI can provide—from Peter King, Tom Verducci, Lee Jenkins, Andy Staples, Grant Wahl, and more—delivered straight to you, along with up-to-the-minute news and live scores.