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Hockey Canada rebranding minor hockey age group names

Hockey Canada is changing divisional names for minor hockey leagues across the country. The organization is replacing the titles like atom, bantam and midget to age-specific classifications such as under-7 to under-21.

Dean Segberg, Executive Chairman of Lloydminster Minor Hockey, thinks the changes are a positive step as it will make it easier for people to enter and participate in minor hockey.

“New people to hockey, new families and even new Canadians enter into hockey wondering what is atom? What age group does that encompass? And now they’ll know that their child is born in a certain birth year than they’re U-10. It makes it easier for them to enter hockey.”

Segberg says it will take some time for parents and the leagues to get used to it but it falls in line with what other Canadian hockey organizations are doing as well as organizations in the United States and other parts of the world. Last November, BC Hockey and Athletics Canada changed their classification names.

“For us, it’s going to be knowledge, education and patience on both sides parents and minor hockey. We’re going to have to work side-by-side to have a smooth transition and we do have a couple of years to make that transition.”

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Hockey Canada made the changes to simplify the different groups as well as remove titles that may have been insensitive. The changes will be implemented nationally in the 2020-21 season.

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