Hockey Charging Penalty: What is the NHL’s Charging Penalty?

Have you ever wondered what exactly a charging penalty is in hockey? Understanding and enforcing charging rules is crucial for players, coaches, and referees.

In this article, we’ll delve into hockey charging penalties, exploring their definition, their impact on the game, and strategies to avoid them. So, let’s get started!

Understanding Charging Penalty Hockey

The National Hockey League (NHL) defines charging as an “illegal check when a player charges into an opponent and makes contact with the opponent using the body or elbow.” A minor plus misconduct or a major plus a game misconduct penalty shall be assessed for charging an opponent. A major penalty plus a game misconduct penalty shall be assessed to any player who recklessly endangers an opponent due to charging. The distance traveled to make the hit differentiates charging from a standard body check.

Official NHL Charging Rule Text (Rule 607)

Charging is when a player goes beyond taking just two steps or goes a really long way to speed up and hit an opponent hard. It’s done with the intention of punishing the other player. This includes things like skating or jumping off the ice to hit the opponent, speeding up to hit them hard as a way to punish them, or skating a really long distance just to hit them really forcefully.

Charging Example Video

In simpler terms, the video you watched demonstrates a penalty in hockey called Charging. It happened because the player in the orange jersey took more than three strides before crashing into the player in the white jersey. This is seen as targeting. Also, before they actually hit each other, the player in orange jumped off the ice and forcefully bumped into the upper part of the player in white.

Key Elements of Charging Penalties

To better comprehend the nuances of charging penalties, let’s delve into the critical elements associated with this infraction:

  1. Physical Force: Charging penalties entail using excessive force against an opponent during a collision.
  2. Intent: The player committing the charge must possess the intention to strike or hit the opposing player forcefully.
  3. Distance: The charging player must travel substantially to hit the opponent, demonstrating an aggressive and purposeful approach.
  4. Contact: Charging involves contacting the opposing player, resulting in an abrupt and forceful collision.
  5. Safety Risk: Charging penalties primarily aim to deter dangerous hits that can jeopardize player safety, emphasizing the importance of responsible gameplay.

Minimizing Charging Penalties

Players must be aware of their actions on the ice to promote clean and safe gameplay. Here are some key considerations to minimize charging penalties:

  1. Discipline: Players should prioritize maintaining discipline and avoiding unnecessary physical altercations.
  2. Awareness: Developing situational awareness allows players to anticipate collisions and make informed decisions.
  3. Positioning: Proper body positioning ensures players are well-balanced and less likely to charge.
  4. Controlled Approach: Players should maintain control and avoid taking excessive strides or launching themselves into hits.
  5. Training: Regular practice and conditioning enhance agility, control, and overall game awareness, reducing the likelihood of charging penalties.


In conclusion, understanding and enforcing charging penalties in hockey is crucial for the safety of players and the integrity of the game. By comprehending the rules and regulations, players can avoid penalties and contribute to a fair and competitive environment. Coaches play a vital role in educating players about charging and fostering a culture of respect on the ice. Let’s prioritize player safety, fair play, and an exciting game of hockey for everyone involved. So, lace up your skates, keep those checks legal, and enjoy the thrilling world of hockey!

Austin Taylor

Who is Austin Taylor?

Meet Austin Taylor, your go-to source for everything ice hockey! With a passion for the sport that’s as deep as the ice itself, Austin Taylor brings you concise, expert insights and nitty-gritty details on all things hockey. From gear reviews to strategy breakdowns, Austin Taylor is your trusted guide to navigating the exhilarating world of ice hockey. Get ready to lace up your skates and dive into the game with Austin Taylor as your ultimate companion.

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