A state-of-the-art hockey training facility in Abbotsford is offering world-class training for minor league and aspiring Junior/ WHL athletes, giving elite athletes the resources they need to develop their physical skills and in-game strategy before hitting the ice on gameday.
The first of its kind in Abbotsford, the Athlete Development Institute (ADI) is a one-stop-shop for minor league hockey teams looking to take their athletes’ performance on and off the ice to the next level.
Founded in 2021 by Vik Gill and Antonio Domingo and Bailey Dhaliwal, the ADI team of trainers share 40 years of coaching experience that has helped young athletes from across B.C. access the growth and recovery resources they need, targeting everything from strength training to skating technique.
With their focus on giving athletes the development they need to keep them playing hockey with confidence, the idea behind Hockey Lab emerged from an absence of comprehensive local training programs that the youth hockey community needed to cultivate elite-level athletes.
“The vision is to provide a one-stop hockey supercentre where players can receive full development. Noting that future plans include incorporating on-ice sessions as well as video analysis for teams and players, the HockeyLab currently offers:
The Skatemill – Using a custom treadmill, a player can reach their peak speed and performance while skating, and the mill analyzes the player’s stride and skating efficiency. Coaches can then use the results to isolate areas where the player’s technique can improve. This information is later used to help develop strength and mobility programs designed for the athlete’s needs.
Dryland sessions – Athletes utilize the ADI training centre, outfitted with the newest equipment, to work on strength and compound lifts, endurance and stamina, mobility and balance, among other components.
Team development – Learning and growing as a team, sessions can include whole team fitness assessments, coaching plans and the choice of additional dryland sessions.
While most seasons start and end between September and March, the ADI staff continues to aid athletes all year long through specialized training during the spring and summer off seasons.
“Right now we’re in season training so we’re focused on keeping these guys fast & injury free so they can actually work on getting faster as the season goes on. When we switch over in March, we’ll go into off-season planning. That’s when the athletes get to lift a bit heavier, they’re on the ice less so they’ll be more gym focused after March,” Gill says. By the off season WHL/junior, college and future NHL draft picks return after their regular season to train at the Hockey Lab.
As Gill continues to pursue his newfound fitness endeavour alongside the ADI/Hockey Lab team, the longtime fitness-trainer-turned-business-owner currently oversees his personal passion project – The Fitness Lab.
Since 2015, Fitness Lab has offered personal training and a variety of group fitness classes to residents of Mission and Abbotsford in an all inclusive environment.
From the launch of the first Fitness Lab, to now, Gill and his team continue to share a sense of pride through the empowerment of every member, adding, ”the Fitness Lab serves Mission and Abbotsford communities by providing an inclusive and supportive environment. The past years have taught us how important physical fitness is for overall health, we strive to keep you engaged with our workouts and to keep you moving!” says Gill.
You can learn more about The Fitness Lab’s programs, memberships and services that best fit your needs by visiting their website. For details about the Hockey Lab, visit www.thefitnesslab.ca.