Devils, RWJBarnabas Health launch Devils Hockey Academy

Free-to-join academy aims to provide best-in-class training while growing reach of game to underserved communities

In a continuing effort to grow the game of hockey — especially in underserved communities — the New Jersey Devils announced Wednesday the creation of the Devils Hockey Academy, presented by RWJBarnabas Health.

Team officials said the academy is committed to providing best-in-class, accessible and affordable training development programs for both new and existing members of the New Jersey youth hockey community.

All on and off-ice programming will be led by the New Jersey Devils’ Youth Hockey and Growth Initiatives Team and will feature Devils players, coaches, alumni and personnel. Select programs also will integrate Hockey Is for Everyone Ambassadors, consisting of current and former high-level hockey players and leaders across the various disciplines of the sport, including Disabled Hockey, Black Hockey History, Girls and Women’s Hockey and PRIDE.

These programs and initiatives are responsible for educating, inspiring, innovating, growing and diversifying the game of hockey throughout the state.

Membership in the Academy is free. You can register here.

The academy’s Virtual Training Website features various resources, including:

  • Skills Zone, with over 15 exclusive videos led by former Devils captain Bryce Salvador;
  • Motivational Messages from current and former Devils players, personnel and Hockey is for Everyone ambassadors;
  • Hockey-Focused Health and Wellness Tips in collaboration with RWJBarnabas Health;
  • Injury Prevention and Preventative Exercise Videos in collaboration with JAG-One Physical Therapy;
  • Hockey 101 and Educational Activities featuring Devils alumni;
  • Ball Hockey Drills and challenges for students and youth interested in the game.

RWJBarnabas Health and the New Jersey Devils share a commitment to build healthier communities by promoting healthy, active lifestyles and world-class health care. The Devils’ partnership with RWJBarnabas Health has long been rooted in youth hockey.

The new Devils Hockey Academy, presented by RWJBarnabas Health, serves as a digital expansion of the Devils Rink Partner Program, which RWJBarnabas Health has supported for the last five years through seminars and on-site activations for players and parents.

RWJBarnabas Health CEO Barry Ostrowsky said he’s thrilled the two organizations have come together on this project.

“We are exceptionally proud to present the virtual Devils Hockey Academy to encourage young athletes from diverse backgrounds to improve their skills, learn healthy habits and prevent injury through exercise,” he said.

“Our system’s major commitment to strengthening the health of all our communities is clearly advanced through our longstanding partnership with the New Jersey Devils, and its youth hockey program, in fostering tools for success on and off the ice.”

New members will create a custom Devils Hockey Academy Player Card that will track their virtual training progress. Along their journey, the completion of the different units will earn each player points, which will result in prizes such as Devils Prize Packs, autographed items and more.

The launch of the Devils Hockey Academy, presented by RWJBarnabas Health, is multifaceted and launches with other initiatives, including:

  • New Jersey Devils Hockey Academy Show: Features news and content focused on local youth hockey activations, clubs, high schools, leagues, rink partners and RWJBarnabas Health Hockey House, in addition to educational features on health and wellness, exercises, drills and more. The show is hosted by Devils community host Catherine Bogart;
  • Hockey is for Everyone Content Series: Featuring the Devils’ Hockey is for Everyone ambassadors, designed to celebrate, educate and expose families to all forms and key partners of the game across Girls Hockey, Disabled Hockey, Hockey in New Jersey, Black Hockey History, Cultural Heritages and Pride;
  • Equipment Relief Program: Providing up to 100 four-piece sets of brand-new equipment for youth hockey families significantly impacted by the pandemic, in partnership with RWJBarnabas Health, NHL, NHLPA, USA Hockey and Pure Hockey;
  • On-Ice Development Programs: Such as Learn to Skate, Learn to Play — including All-Girls Programs, Cross-Ice Development League and Camps and Clinics Series in partnership with USA Hockey, Atlantic Amateur Hockey Association, RWJBarnabas Health Hockey House and local Rink Partners, featuring Devils Alumni, Hockey is for Everyone ambassadors and mascot NJ DEVIL;
  • Hockey in New Jersey Diversity and Inclusion Ice Hockey Program: New Jersey Devils, Devils Youth Foundation, NHL and NHLPA are proud to continue their longtime support of Hockey in New Jersey Diversity and Inclusion Ice Hockey Program, in partnership with Keith Veltre and Dennis Ruppe, which is a free, recreational program for over 1,000 girls and boys living in Newark, Jersey City, Englewood, Montclair and Belleville across five rink partners;
  • Virtual Youth Hockey Day (Feb. 20 vs. Buffalo): In celebration of USA Hockey’s Hockey Week Across America, the Devils will host a virtual Youth Hockey Day presented by RWJBarnabas Health by recognizing a Junior Captain of the Game, Youth Official of the Game, Dr. John J. McMullen Service to NJ Hockey Award, Youth Hockey Intermission Marquee Matchup, 200+ High School Hockey Captains Cardboard Cutouts, Top 5 High School Hockey Goals of the Month and on-going Hockey Academy promotions in-game through 2nd Screen Experience and social media.