What Is Dek Hockey – What You Need To Know

Dek hockey is a form of ball hockey that is played in an enclosed area usually on a surface called sport court. Dek hockey is going to have boards just like an ice hockey game but instead of skates, this game is played in running shoes.

Dek hockey is non contact and is played with an orange plastic ball that is often used for road hockey.

The Rules

Luckily for former ice hockey players, the rules of Dek hockey are very similar. This game borrows the rules from ice hockey and made a few adjustments to match the new environment the players will play in.

Offside And Icing

Dek hockey is going to include offside and icing though the rules are a little different then ice hockey. The line used for offside in dek hockey is the center red line.

This means if an offensive player passes the center red line before the ball he will be ruled off side.

Icing in dek hockey is going to be called when a player dumps a ball out from their defensive end past the other team’s red line. The exact area from which icing is called may vary from league to league.

Number Of Players

One interesting fact about dek hockey is that it can be played with different amounts of players on the ice. Unlike ice hockey that is almost always played at 5v5 dek hockey uses a different number of players depending on the league.

Some leagues choose to play three on three dek hockey along with a goalie for each team. This type of play is much more open but can get tiring quite quickly.

Other dek leagues may choose to play 4v4 or even 5v5 just like ice hockey. The number of players on the court in dek hockey is likely going to change the flow of the game so be sure to check that out before joining your league.


Just like ice hockey most dek hockey leagues are going to include referees calling penalties. Since this sport is non-contact referees will be keeping an eye to make sure nobody lays any body checks.

In most dek hockey leagues you will see the same sorts of penalties called that you would see in a regular hockey game. Hooking, tripping, slashing, are all common penalties in dek hockey leagues.

In some youth leagues, you may find that high sticking penalties are a little different. Some leagues have strict rules regarding raising sticks above your waist. This way players that aren’t wearing face masks do not have to worry about getting high sticked.


When it comes to equipment dek hockey is much less complicated than ice hockey. Depending on your league you may find the only equipment you need is shin pads, gloves, and a hockey stick.

Shin Pads

Almost every league of Dek hockey requires shins pads. With all the sticks being waved around in a hockey game it is incredibly easy to get hit in the shin. Save yourself the trouble and get a good quality pair of shin guards.


A pair of ice hockey gloves is another key piece of equipment for dek hockey. Just like the shins, the hands can easily end up on the receiving end of a slash. In order to keep your hands protected hockey gloves are a must-have.

Hockey Stick

When choosing your hockey stick for dek hockey it is important you choose one with an ABS blade. These blades are made of a hard plastic and are built for ball hockey. The durability of the plastic is going to make these sticks last much longer.

You may also find that some leagues will only allow you to play if you are using a stick with a plastic blade.

Running Shoes

Getting a good pair of shoes is quite important for this style of hockey. Since you will spend so much time running on a hard surface you will likely find that your shoes will wear out pretty quickly.

Try to find a durable pair that offers good support for your feet. Running on hard surfaces can result in some soreness so finding a good pair of shoes is an important part of your hockey equipment.


Helmets and face masks in these hockey leagues tend to be reserved for the highest levels of competition as well as youth leagues.

The majority of youth leagues make helmet use mandatory along with mouthguards. It may feel weird at first to play off ice with a helmet on but you will get used to it quickly.

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