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Learn to Play

Future Caps LTP Promo

Ion's Learn to Skate Program

There are multiple development paths in the game of hockey, and no one path is the right path for every player.  Ion is proud to offer a Learn to Skate program certified by Learn to Skate USA.  

Players coming out of Try Hockey events are welcome to continue their development focusing solely on the most important part of the game- skating.  

Ion’s Learn to Skate program features

  • 30-minute weekly group classes 
  • free skate rental, and
  • admission to a public skate session at Ion.  

Their mission is to provide a FUN and positive experience that will spark & sustain a lifelong love of skating! 

Click HERE to learn more!

USA Hockey Welcome to New Hockey Parents

Complimentary USA Hockey Membership with Future Caps Learn to Play

All Futures Caps Learn to Play Participants will receive a complimentary USA Hockey Membership so there is no need to register.

However, if you are participating in your Learn to Play for players 10 years and older or are registering for our Ion Continue to Play program and do not yet have a membership, you will need to register.with USA Hockey.  Click HERE to review the benefits of becoming a USA Hockey Member.  Registration for players under 6 years of age is free.

Ion LTP - we have FUN!

Interested in Coaching?

Click this link to register your interest in coaching in the Learn to Play program.

Are you ready to learn how to play hockey?

Multiple Options available for learning the game!

Ion offers multiple programs to get your player ready to play hockey.

  • Future Caps Learn to Play - Presented by the Washington Capitals, this program is offered in 8 week sessions and players are provided with head to toe equipment.  This program is for players Ages 5 to 9.  Players must register two weeks before the session begins to allow time for delivery of equipment.  They are now accepting registrations for the session beginning on October 29th.
  • Ion Learn to Play 1  - if you already have your own gear and are ready to get on the ice, Ion's Learn to Play 1 is ready and waiting to get you on the ice.  LTP 1 focuses on hockey fundamentals (skating, puck control, passing, shooting and fun!).  6 and 7 week options are available but you can sign up at any point during the session period, no registration restrictions or cut off dates.  
  • Ion Learn to Play 2 - If you have graduated from Future Caps Learn to Play or Ion Learn to Play 1, then you are ready to take your game to the next level.  Hockey fundamentals, plus concepts like movement away from the puck, stability, contact confidence, elements of team play, and fun!
    • USA Hockey ADM-style practices utilize station-based drills and small area games to increase puck touches, player interactions, and decision-making all within the context of the game.
    • Players try all positions – even goalie if they want (equipment provided)
    • LTP groups meet on Saturday afternoons
    • Players are encouraged to participate in multiple LTP programs to continue developing their skills until they feel ready to play house hockey (Ion Mites).
    • 6 and 7 week options are available but you can sign up at any point during the session period, no registration restrictions or cut off dates.
    • Ion reserves the right to require players to participate in additional LTP programs if the coaching staff agrees that the player is not yet ready to safely compete in house hockey.


The Future Caps Learn to Play program presented by World Wide Technology provides a unique opportunity for families to join the hockey community and for participants to develop fundamental skills to help them succeed both on and off the ice. Created jointly by the National Hockey League Players’ Association (NHLPA) and the National Hockey League (NHL). Learn to Play’s goal is to inspire youth and welcome more families into the hockey community.


  • Designed for first-time players between the ages of 5-9 years old.
  • Participants are strongly encouraged to complete a Learn to Skate” program at Ion before signing up for the Learn to Play program. *Baseline skating skills necessary.
  • Please enroll in and complete our Learn to Skate Program Prior to the start of your Future Caps Learnt to Play session by clicking HERE
  • 8 weeks of on ice instruction (one lesson per week). 
  • Participants must register online, phone and/or in-person registration at individual rinks will not be accepted. 
  • If your local program is sold out, please complete the waiting list form and if an opening becomes available you may be contacted. 
  • Unique experiences with NHL clubs, league brands and alumni vary from club to club.
  • USA Hockey will issue a complimentary membership to all participants once registrations have been confirmed.  You DO NOT need to register for USA Hockey to participate in this program. Your complimentary USA Hockey number will be sent directly to the email used to register your player during the course of your session
  • Equipment is provided for those who meet the criteria, you will receive guidance on fitting and ordering once you register with the Future Caps Learn to Play program.
  • Remember to get your skates sharpened and your stick cut prior to the start of your session.  The Ion Pro Shop can help you with this task!

Registration opens July 11th

Future Caps Learn to Play Schedule

Fall 1 - August 20 – October 22 (No classes Oct 1, Oct 8)

Fall 2 - October 29 – January 21 (No classes Nov 19, Nov 26, Dec 10, Dec 24, Dec 31)

  • 4:20pm ages 5-9 

Winter - January 28 – March 25 (No classes Mar 4)

  • 4:20pm ages 5-9 

Spring - April 1 – June 3 (No classes Apr 8. May 27)

  • 4:20pm ages 5-9 

Summer - June 17 – Aug 12 (No classes Jul 1)

  • 4:20pm ages 5-9 

All registrations for the Future Caps Learn to Play must be submitted HERE

Future Caps Learn to Play Ambassador, Paul Mulvey, joined our Learn to Play session Saturday August 27 at Ion!

Ion Learn to Play 1 & 2

The Future Caps Learn to Play program is what we refer to as Learrn to Play 1 ( LTP 1) for players age 5-9.  If you missed the cutoff for Future Caps Learn to Play, you can still enroll in the Ion LTP 1 

Ion Offers LTP 1 & LTP 2 in 7 Week Sessions

For Players that have graduated from a previous Ion LTP 1 or from the Future Caps Learn to Play, we offer Learn to Play 2 (LTP 2) classes for LTP1 Graduates ages 5 and up to continue developing their skills so they can transition from learning to play to participating in our Ion Mites or Loudoun Castles League teams.

LTP2 (beginners plus) continues with hockey fundamentals and also introduces core concepts:

  • movement away from the puck
  • stability
  • contact confidence
  • fundamental team play.  

LTP 2 groups meet once per week for 40 minutes of instruction and skill development, followed by 20-minute small-area games.

Why do we use small area games in our development programs?  The ADM emphasizes age-appropriate training as part of long-term athletic development.  ADM-style practices utilize station-based drills and small area games to increase puck touches, player interactions, and decision-making all within the context of the game.  The game is, after all, the best possible teacher.   

Players at ADM practices move more and do more in their practices.  As a result, ADM-style practices deliver more efficient skill development and produce more skilled players.  The ADM is a nationwide blueprint designed specifically to help kids reach their full potential.  

All Ion Learn to Play players must register with USA Hockey, and bring their own equipment including:

  • An H.E.C.C. certified hockey helmet with full face protection and chin strap
  • Ice hockey gloves
  • Elbow pads
  • Shoulder pads
  • Shin guards
  • Ice hockey pants
  • Hockey skates (hockey skate rental is available through the Front Desk)
  • Hockey stick
  • Mouth guard
  • Neck guards are recommended but not required. 

Ion Learn to Play 1 & 2 Schedule

2022/23  Ion Learn to Play1  & 2 Schedule:

Sept 3 – Oct 22 (6 Weeks) 

  • Both LTP 1 & 2 Available
  • 3:10pm ages 5 +
  • $232.00

Nov 5 – Jan 14 (6 Weeks) 

  • Both LTP 1 & 2 Available
  • 3:10pm ages 5 +
  • $232.00

Jan 28 – Mar 13 (7 Weeks) 

  • Both LTP 1 & 2 Available
  • 3:10pm ages 5 +
  • $270.00

* Full equipment required for all LTP sessions.

Click Below to sign up for the next Learn to Play Program!

Sign up for Learn to Play 2

Follow this link to sign up for Learn to Play