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Our Program

WN Junior Hockey Expectations

All Junior players are competing for athletic/scholastic opportunities within the sport of hockey. As a result, higher personal conduct and academic standards are in place while playing for and representing the Hampton Roads Junior hockey club.

We expect that players are on time for all events.
Players will be expected to have an appearance of an aspiring professional. Clothing should be neat and appropriate, no vulgar messages, low hanging pants, ball caps on sideways or other items that would compromise and your objective of being selected to higher level hockey. WN has strict game day dress code both at home and on the road which will be issued by the Head Coach.
Players will be expected to take part in youth hockey training in a mentor position. We expect participation from each player that is prideful and personal for the benefit of the youth players within the Whaler Nation family.  
Strict locker room cleanliness expectations are always expected, failure to have pride in this team space may result in loss of privilege.
Players and families always have an opportunity to request and schedule a meeting with the Head Coach or General Manager to discuss challenges. However, using social media outlets in a negative format toward the WN organization and/or members of the WN organization will not be accepted and may result in loss of privilege.

Junior Whaler Philosophy

Our Junior hockey program is a highly competitive program focused on skill development and high-level exposure. The club will inspire a commitment to sportsmanship within the individual, the team and the community.  Exceptional coaching, hockey education and comprehensive on and off-ice training will be the trademark of the WN organization.

It is understood that Whaler Nation Junior hockey provides a training and competition curriculum similar to that of the professional ranks. WN views this platform as a comprehensive path to providing each player an opportunity to achieve greater athletic/scholastic opportunities in a similar competitive environment.  
WN also commits its participants to be involved with community service projects by spending real time and energy within these functions.  It is a goal of WN to have its participants immersed in the community and sharing the sport of hockey and our collective goals.

On-Ice Development

Whaler Nation places a premium regarding on-ice focus on fundamental skills, expected skill sets and team system understanding/execution at the Junior Hockey level. Coaches will work to keep current with the USA Hockey Coaching Education Program, in addition to other training regimens, in order to provide innovative and dynamic coaching techniques.  WN operates under the premise that hockey players improve during practice and also that WN players must receive equal or better opportunity than competitors to be on the ice in order to achieve highly sought after achievements.

Off-Ice Development

Junior players will have full access to the WN strength and conditioning center at Chilled Ponds.  Additionally, players will receive training from professionals at Bon Secours who will instruct players one evening per week between September and March.   

Sports Performance
·         Official practice from Labor Day to Mid-March (Approx 26 weeks)
·         1x week ½ hour-45 min. session
·         26, ½ hour sessions



Coach Ratti enters his 3rd season as the Whalers youth and junior programs strength and condition coach.  Ratti trains all Whaler Nation athletes on a weekly basis and specializes in injury prevention, sport specific training, and functional movement screening; Joseph has a variety of experience in field of strength and conditioning.

“We take a holistic approach to training the Whalers”, stated Ratti. “By incorporating our sports performance, physical therapy, and our medical professionals, we give our athletes a leg up on the competition on the ice, while helping keep them on the ice”.

Joey received a Bachelor’s of Science in Exercise Science with a minor in Strength and Conditioning from Appalachian State University and a Master’s Degree from California State University of Pennsylvania with a degree in Exercise Science with a focus on performance enhancement and injury prevention. Joey has trained all levels of sports from youth to professional.
**Bon Secours will be giving each player a base line Impact Concussion Test valued at approx $500.

What do you get?


  • 6 weeks of Summer Development Training (1.5 hr/day, 5 days/wk)
  • Four Practices/week : 1 1/2 hours per session
  • 5-6 Showcase Tournaments
  • WN Gym usage within the contract time frame for all players in good standing
  • Bon Secours Performance Training one time per week from September through March
  • Base-line computerized neurocognitive exam
  • Private film sessions
  • Transportation from Chilled Ponds to away games
  • Hotel accommodations (when required) while at away games
  • Private Team Locker Room for players equipment and training preparation
  • Access to all puck shooting sessions within the contract time frame for all players in good standing.