There are popular sports in Slovakia- men ice hockey and not such popular sports- women ice hockey. It is known who Miroslav Šatan or Jozef Golonka are, but what about women ice hockey? Who is the most successful female hockey player? Is there a women´s league in Slovakia? Do women wear suspensor? I couldn´t answer this questions myself if I didnt have a sister who has played ice hockey for 15 years.
Photo: Dalibor Krupka
Recently I have watched final game of women´s ice hockey league. I don´t visit hockey games very often but this game impressed me. So I decided to share my experience of this „men´s“ sport from the women´s point of view. Here is an interview with my sister- Ľudmila Bednárová, successful ice hockey and ball hockey player.
Photo: Dalibor Krupka
When did you start to play ice hockey?
I was 13 years old when slovakian national team played on winter olympic games in Lillehamer and ice hockey became a sport no.1 in Slovakia. Everybody was crazy about ice hockey including me. In the same year an ice rin k was built in Kežmarok and a women´s ice hockey team was established. I didn´t hasitate a minute and joined the team. After the team fell appart I joined the team of Poprad.
Do people take women´s ice hockey seriously? What is the audience on the games?
Mostly not. Even between my friends I can find some that don´t understand why I play ice hockey, especially when I am not paid for it. The audience on the games are mostly family and friends of us.
Are female ice hockey players paid?
In Russia only, as long as I know.
What is the quality of slovakian women´s ice hockey comparing to the other national teams?
It is very difficult question. There was a period of growth few years ago- we got to the A category of world championship. Curently we are on 8th place in world ranking. But there was a big reality check during the olympics qualification- we ended up on last place, w e were relegated from Top Division world champion two years ago our junior team ended up on last possition as well. It is not going well and we are losing the touch with the best teams.
What is your biggest success?
Paradoxically, my biggest success is associated with summer version of ice hockey- ball hockey. I became a world champion last year. We are actually preparing for a championship in Canada, where we want to defend the title. In Ice hockey I became a champion of Slovakian league last year.
You are women though, are you emotional during the game?
Yes, there are arguments, tears, vulgarism even during the game. The couch must be good psychologist to handle such situations.
Photo: Michaela Bednárová
Do you wear suspensor?
Yes, almost all players do.
Do you spit?
You don´t want to see what is there after men ´s game...
Does it stink in your dressing room?
Do you fight?
What bag goes with your skates?