Taking Liberties With … Christian Heil
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Position: Forward, Colorado College
Height/Weight: 6-foot-1, 175 pounds
Last Youth Team: Colorado Thunderbirds 18U AAA
Last Junior Team: Muskegon Lumberjacks (USHL)
Colorado Rubber: What advice do you have for a young hockey player and his/her parents?
Christian Heil: Hard work will be your greatest asset, both on and off the ice. There a few things that require no talent at all and hard work is one of those things. How hard you work is completely in your control. You’d be hard pressed to find success without hard work. As for a young player’s parents, I would just say as long as your kids are acting and playing the right way, support them through all the ups and downs. Don’t be overbearing about the sport, but also don’t be hands off. Let the sport be the kid’s, and allow them to fall in love with it on their own.
CR: What is your game-day routine?
CH: I’m not overly superstitious. As long as I can get into the rink and get my mind and body right for the game, that’s all I need. That usually just comes with light stretching and focusing on what I need to do to help my team win.
CR: What is your favorite sport outside hockey and why?
CH: Golf. I grew up playing with my dad and grandpa, so I have a lot of great memories with that. It’s also a great crossover from hockey that changes the pace and slows things down, but allows you to stay in a competitive mindset during the offseason.
CR: What was your favorite/best hockey moment before playing at CC?
CH: Winning the USA Hockey 16U national championship with the Thunderbirds under Angelo Ricci in 2010.
CR: What is the most challenging aspect of being a student-athlete?
CH: Having to balance academics, athletics and your social life is the toughest part about being a student-athlete. Things can get pretty hectic at times and you really have to prioritize and make sure you get everything done. Time management is great skill to learn and everyone at Colorado College has been a great help during my time here.
CR: If you weren’t playing hockey, what would you be doing?
CH: I’m sure I’d be playing another sport. It’s hard for me to imagine myself not competing in some sort of team sport. There’s so many aspects about sports and competition that I love, and it would be hard to give those things up.
CR: What is your favorite vacation spot and why?
CH: I’ve been to Hawaii a few times and that’s a tough place to beat. It’s always nice to go see the ocean being from Colorado.
CR: Who was the player you most idolized growing up and why?
CH: Sergei Fedorov. His speed and skating ability is really what made me idolize him as a kid. All I wanted to do was be able to play like Sergei.
CR: What’s the one thing people should know about you?
CH: I’m a big family guy. Everything I am and everything I’ve accomplished, I owe to my parents, Brian and Tammy, and my older sister, Lauren.
Photo/Casey B. Gibson
– Compiled by Matt Mackinder