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India is a country in southern Asia with a population of about 1.2 billion. Its capital is New Delhi.
















New Delhi







IIHF Since

April 27 1989





The India national ice hockey team is the national ice hockey team of India, and a member of the International Ice Hockey Federation.

Ice hockey in India has surprisingly deep roots. Areas like Shimla, Kashmir and Ladakh have traditionally cold climates. As early as 1985, the Indian Army and local youth started playing the game to occupy themselves in the winter. They used improvised field hockey sticks and converted shoe polish tins to act as pucks.

Today, the sport has come a long way since then. It is played at the national level in Ladakh, Shimla and Kashmir. Even though there are no artificial rinks available in the country, the game flourishes at these locations during the winters.

The northern states of India have six teams that play at the national level and in addition they conduct very active Learn to Play programs for the children and women.

Many ex-pats from the Canadian and Russian consulates in Mumbai and Delhi have been playing the game in Ladakh.

Background of Ice Hockey in Ladakh

The history of Ice hockey dates back to the early 70’s when the Ladakh Scouts, battalion of the Indian army who are posted in the high border regions took up the game. The high Changthang Plateau with its frozen streams and high altitude lakes formed an ideal place to play ice hockey and since then spread amongst the army and continued to be played by them. The game however gained popularity when they began exhibition matches in Leh in the winter. Since there is nothing to do in the harsh winter and the locals began to play in the small irrigation pond in Karzoo, Leh.

Ice Hockey gear was not and is still not available to buy in Ladakh. The few people who have contacts outside Ladakh have requested friends to get ice hockey skates. The Ladakh Scouts are well equipped as they get their gear through the army. The J&K tourism also have a full set of equipment but are quite reluctant to spare any. The only place in India where anything close to ice games and equipment is available is Shimla a small hill station in the northwestern part of India where they have an ice skating rink and fancy ice skating is enjoyed by the young and old alike. 2 Chinese shoemaker brothers here began making ice skates and these are still used.

The local Ladakhis enjoyed this winter sport but due to lack of gear began to improvise and the first teams began by getting the ice skating blades from Shimla and nailing them to the army ammunition boots-quite a feat to balance those huge boots wearing 3-4 layers of socks inside on the blades but this is how they began. Roller skating and ordinary ground hockey sticks were used. What takes the cream is the improvisation of puck-the thick rubber heels of the army and other boots were cut to a rounded shape and used. Goal keepers were the ground hockey pads and helmets were never used and neither were elbow and knee pads by other players. Players were always scared to get hurt but undeterred they played and many had cuts/bruises and stitches on their heads but the game continued.

National TeamEdit

India men's national ice hockey team

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