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Frequently Asked Questions

Does my child need to learn how to skate before signing up for the KC Stars?
Yes. In order for your child to get the most enjoyment out of the ice hockey experience they should be comfortable with skating before joining a league. KC Ice Center offers Learn To Play Hockey and beginner skating lessons throughout the year. Each session is eight weeks long.

What equipment does my child need to play hockey?
All youth hockey players are required by USA Hockey to wear full gear, and can receive a penalty or removed from the ice if they don't have it. This equipment is for the protection of the players and is NOT optional. It is required to participate in the KC Stars hockey program. Equipment can be purchased online or at Play It Again Sports. CLICK HERE for a full list of equipment.

How much does the equipment cost?
It's no secret that hockey is an expensive sport. And to enjoy hockey to its fullest you must have specific equipment that fits properly TODAY, NOT equipment that you will "grow into". Hockey skates will be your biggest and most important investment. Youth skates cost anywhere from $120-$300. Your next most important investment is a helmet. Helmets with cages start at about $75-$100. However more expensive helmets are usually more comfortable and are also adjustable with growth. Padding comes next. Youth sized shoulder pads are approximately $50.00, kneepads $30.00, and elbow pads $30.00, Hockey pants (breezers) $50-$75. Under garments are not as expensive as the other items but are just as important when it comes to comfort. Compression shorts with jock built in and Velcro tabs are approximately $40.00. Hockey socks are about $12.00. Gloves are about $30.00, plus you'll also need a neck guard and mouth guard.  Ice hockey sticks start at about $50.00 for junior sizes. You may buy any of these items online or at Play It Again Sports. We recommend that equipment be fitted by a knowledgeable salesperson if the parents are not familiar with it.

What is the hockey season?
Registration for the winter hockey season usually starts in July with practice starting in early September.  House teams are selected in September and then start to play games in October. The fall/winter season ends late February or the first part of March. Some travel teams go beyond that date. Spring league starts in April and finishes the end of May. Many camps and clinics are offered during the summer months as well as open stick times for all age levels.

When and where do Stars teams practice?
KC Ice Center is the Stars home rink.  House players practice one to two times per week. The Stars organization takes great effort to ensure that practice times and nights are consistent. Usually when a practice time is assigned at the beginning of the season, the team will have that practice time all season. Occasionally a team will get an extra practice that may be at a different time. 

When and where are the games?
Stars house teams participate in a city wide league and play games at all the rinks in the Kansas City area including St. Joe and Topeka. Game times are set based on ice schedules for the home teams, and are generally on weekends.

How do I know what level my child will play at?
USA Hockey has identified age ranges for ice hockey players that include 6U, 8U, 10U Squirt, 12U Peewee, 14U Bantam, 16/18U Midget-High School

My child has never played hockey before. Can he/she play at a lower level?
No, USA Hockey rules do not allow players to play down. House players usually have a wide range of skills on any one team, and coaches try to match experienced players with comparable players on the opposing team. Girls are no longer permitted to play down one age bracket when playing on a co-ed team.

Can my child play up into another age division?
Although not recommended by the Stars, players can move up a division under certain circumstances. This is usually done in the lower age divisions and requires approval from the director of hockey.

At what age do players start body checking?
Under USA Hockey rules, players at the Bantam level are permitted to body check during games. Coaches at this level teach the players how to check and how to take a check to prevent injury.

How do I determine what level my child should play at (house or travel)?
There are many variables to this question. One consideration is the amount of travel associated with a travel team. In Kansas City our travel teams do a significant amount of travel to Nebraska, Iowa and other Midwest cities due to the fact that Kansas City has a limited number of hockey programs. You need to make the commitment to travel and the extra practices.

The other consideration is the skill/talent level of the player. Travel teams are more skilled and as such have tryouts in order to be selected to a team. The player needs to attend the tryout sessions and then will be contacted by the appropriate coach as to whether they made a travel team. If the player does not make it on a travel team they will be referred to the house league. There are various House League tournaments as well.

My son/daughter is in high school, is there a high school league?
Yes, there is a High School League. Stars high school age JV-Varsity players compete in the Mid America High School Hockey League.

What type of Insurance do I need for Hockey?
All players must register with USA Hockey. This provides insurance coverage but is not necessarily intended to be the player's primary insurance. For more information about USA Hockey's insurance, please see

Can girls play hockey?
Yes, the Stars welcome all players, regardless of gender. Girls play with the boys in the house/rec division, as well as travel teams.  KCYHA also offers all girl travel teams

My child says they want to play goalie. Do I need special equipment?
Goalies are one of the most integral parts of a hockey team. They do require special equipment that is more expensive than the normal player. If your child is a Mite, the Stars provide goalie equipment to the team. Because of the individual characteristics of each player (size, weight, tendencies, right vs. left handed, etc.) the league can not stock all the equipment necessary for the goalies at the age groups past Mite.

How do the coaches select the travel teams?
Travel coaches are committed to fielding the best possible teams at each level, and select players for those teams based on the players' abilities and the position each plays. In addition, each team must meet USA Hockey requirements for the team composition (for example, no more than 20 players may be rostered). Coaches expect players selected for travel teams to be committed to the team and to attend all practices and be at all games unless they have discussed an absence with the coach.

How do I apply to become a KC Stars coach?
Coaching information is located at the following link

Does the Stars organization follow USA Hockey commitment for "Zero Tolerance"?
Yes, the Stars organization is committed to the "Zero Tolerance" policy regarding use of foul language, fighting, poor treatment of officials and use of illegal substances. Players are expected to conduct themselves appropriately at all facilities and all team events. Players, team representatives and parents who cannot abide by the rules will be disciplined. All players and parents are expected to sign a "Code of Conduct" at registration.

How do I register my child to play hockey with the Kansas City Stars?
Fall / Winter League registration usually opens up mid July. First you must register your player online as a member with USA Hockey at Then go to to register for the season. You'll need your USA Hockey registration confirmation number.  

What should I do if my question is not on this list?

If you have additional questions about KC Stars Hockey or need more specific information, please contact or email our league coordinator for further help.

Mary Helmick
League Coordinator and Administrator
Phone: 913-851-7768