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What options do the Polar Caps offer?

The Polar Caps offer a wide range of hockey programs suited to the needs of each individual player. Our coaches closely monitor skill level and aptitude of each player to make sure the hockey experience is positive and rewarding.

Learn to PLAY 

Polar Caps will offer several 6 to 8 week-long sessions beginning in the summer and throughout the winter season. Learn to Play (LTP) is for our newest and youngest skaters, that may have had some prior experience skating. LTP is designed to be a fun, low-pressure introduction to basic hockey skills through games and free-play. Skaters completing a LTP session can move into Cross-Ice or RWB mid-season if they so choose.

Cross Ice - Hockey Intro (October - March)

The Cross Ice (X-Ice) program teaches advanced initiated skaters up to age 6 the basic strategies of competitive hockey and introduces team and competitive play. X-Ice teams practice 1-2 times per week and play scrimmage games against other X-Ice teams on 1/3 of a sheet of ice with no goalies.

Red, White & Blue - Recreational/Local Travel Hockey Intro (October - March)

Formerly known as U8 Rink Rats and Mites, the Red, White & Blue (RWB) program has combined these two groups and created a program for skaters up to age 8 that stresses continued development of skating skills, hockey strategies, and fundamentals. RWB skaters practice 2-3 times a week, and recreational games are played on the weekend against other teams in the Dane County area on 1/2 of a sheet of ice with a suited up goalie in the net.

In-House Recreational Hockey, AKA 'Rink Rat' (October - March)

The House hockey program, also known as Rink Rats, stresses continued development of skating skills, hockey strategies, and fundamentals. We offer House Rink Rat teams at the 10U (9-10 year olds), 12U (11-12 year olds), and 14U (13-14 year olds) levels.  Recreational games are played in-house or against other teams typically in the Dane County area with a suited up goalie in the net. No checking is allowed.

All House Rink Rat teams welcome new skaters as well as those that have played several years. Our coaches are flexible and very supportive of taking all comers. Registrations after November 1 for the teams are still welcome, but are subject to head coach approval (primary driver is total team size relative to number of coaches). Teams will have a parents meeting within the first couple weeks of the season to clarify additional expectations and any questions you may have as you start with the program.

The House 10U team typically practices 1-2 times a week and has 1 game on the weekend at MIA in the Studio rink against other 10U teams in the area. The 10U team will typically schedule a couple games on full ice with area teams later in the season as an introduction to playing on full ice.

The House 12U and 14U teams typically practice 1-2 times per week on the Studio rink or ½ sheet of full ice. They have 1 game each weekend, and occasionally a second ice time each weekend which can be either a scrimmage, practice, or second game. The House 12U and 14U teams typically play appropriately skilled opponents in the Dane County area. We have also played games in neighboring counties as needed to create a balanced schedule while maintaining a competitive environment for the team as a whole.

Travel Hockey Teams (October - March)

As your player progresses, the Polar Caps offer several travel teams at each age classification -- Squirt (9-10 year olds), Pee Wee (11-12 year olds), Bantam (13-14 year olds) -- for players who live in the Madison Memorial and Madison West high school districts. Placement on these teams is competitive and is designed specifically to group together players with similar skill levels and experience. Evaluations are held at the conclusion of preseason practices to determine team placements. Like-skilled teams are formed for A, B, C1, and C2 levels of competition depending on the number of total players. These teams generally have 2-3 practices per week and weekend games in the Dane County area and neighboring counties. Teams typically participate in a regional area weekend tournament and will also have 1-2 out of town weekend tournaments per season. Travel teams also play for an opportunity to participate in the Wisconsin State Tournament at the end of the season. The Polar Caps travel teams are part of Region 4 and play in Division 1 of WAHA (Wisconsin Amateur Hockey Association).

2021-2022 Season Program Options by Skater Age

Birth Year "Hockey Age" Learn to Play 6U Cross Ice 8U Mite RWB 10U House 12U House 14U House 10U Squirt 12U Pee Wee 14U Bantam
2018 3 Yes
2017 4 Yes
2016 5 Yes Yes
2015 6 Yes Yes
2014 7 Yes Yes
2013 8 Yes Yes
2012 9 Yes Yes Yes
2011 10 Yes Yes Yes
2010 11 Yes Yes
2009 12 Yes Yes
2008 13 Yes Yes
2007 14 Yes Yes


Polar Caps' fees have historically been some of the lowest in the city, and having parent volunteers helps to keep costs down. In addition, the Polar Caps have financial aid available to help families on a fixed income with fees and costs.