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WYH In-House Program FAQs


What is In-House?


In-House players are all registered in the Waltham Youth Hockey program and play amongst themselves at the Veterans Memorial rink on Totten Pond Road in Waltham and occasionally the Ryan rink in Watertown.  There may be a few occasions during the season that we will have ice at another nearby rink. 


The primary goal of the program is for the players to have fun and develop an appreciation for the game of hockey.  The focus is to develop basic skills in a fun atmosphere with plenty of encouragement from coaches and parents.


Is the In-House program the correct fit for my child?

Below is a brief comparison of the programs that Waltham Youth Hockey offers for children ages 4 through 8 in order to assist you in finding the correct fit for your child.  If you still have further questions after reading through this FAQ document, feel free to contact us.  (see “What if I still have questions?”)













Inhouse Tykes

4 to 8

4 to 6



Waltham & Watertown




Late March


$  425.00

Inhouse Mites

4 to 8

5 to 8

basic skating skills


Waltham & Watertown


Waltham & Watertown


Early April


$  520.00

Travel Mites

4 to 8

6 to 8

basic hockey skills


Waltham & Watertown


Typically within 45 minute drive

Early September

Late April





What ages are eligible?


The In-House program is open to boys and girls age 4 to 8. 


 What are Tykes?


The Tyke program is a learn-to-skate program.  Most of the children are between the ages of 4 and 6.  If your child is older and cannot skate, we suggest they start with the Tykes and then move up to the Mites as soon as they are ready.  Tykes start by first learning to catch their balance pushing a milk crate.  As skills progress, the players will move to other areas of the ice where the focus is on skating skills such as edge control, stopping, backward skating and agility.


The goal is to develop skills so that the player can move up to the Mite level.


What are Mites?


Mites are children ages 5 to 8.  WYH has an In-House Mites program and a Travel Mites Program.


The In-House Mites skate at the Waltham rink on Totten Pond Road.  After a pre-season of skating and skill development, the players are assigned to teams in December.  The teams practice once a week and play a game once a week.  


In-House Mite players move up to travel teams in subsequent years.  The age requirements for travel Mites are the same as In-House Mites. 


 How does the Travel program differ from the In-House program?


Travel team hockey has a higher level of time and travel commitment than the In-House program, with travel players generally skating 3 to 4 times per week (1 to 2 practices, 1 skill session and 1 game). Travel games will be a mix of half-ice format and full-ice.  Practice and skills for travel teams are typically at the Waltham rink.  Both home and away games are played at rinks that are anywhere from 10 to 45 minutes away from Waltham.  Cost of the travel programs are proportionally more expensive than the in-house programs.  The travel season runs from early September to late April.  Travel teams will also typically participate in 1 to 3 short tournaments per year.  Tryouts for travel teams are held in the spring for the following year’s teams.  In-house programs are open enrollment.


How long is the In-House season?


Both Tykes and Mites programs start in early October and run to late March or early April. 



How does the season progress?


Around Thanksgiving, the Tykes will continue to develop skating fundamentals and hockey skills.  They will have some cross ice internal scrimmages as the year progresses.  If a Tyke, especially an older child, has developed sufficient skating skills, we will discuss with the parents the potential for moving up to the In-house Mites by December.  A Tyke who moves up to the Mites by January 1st will be required to pay the added cost of the Mite Program.


The Mites will skate in large groups between for the first portion of the season, focusing primarily on skating skills.  Evaluations will be made before the end of the calendar year and all in-house mite participants will be assigned to a team at that time.  The remainder of the season will consist of a team practice and game each weekend.  Ice times will vary as noted below. 


All games are run with a 2 minute buzzer.  Each team will run 3 lines, A B & C, based on skill level for 2 minute shifts.   Each line will only compete against its counterpart from the other team (i.e. A line vs. A line, B line vs. B line, and C line vs. C line).  All games will be run with the half-ice format.


At the end of the season we will have our In-House Stanley Cup Tournament (or Beanpot Tournament depending on number of teams that year), which always ends up being the highlight of the season for players and parents.



Is the program restricted to Waltham residents?


No, the program is open to neighboring towns.  Last season our program included players from Lincoln, Needham, Watertown, Weston and Wayland.



What are the ice times?


Ice schedules are published monthly for the entire WYH program, including In-House.  Times and days will vary, depending on holidays, vacations, tournaments and high school requirements.


As a general rule, Tykes skate once during the weekend for 1 hour.  In-House Mites will skate twice (two 1-hr sessions) during the weekend somewhere between 10:00 AM and 6:00 PM each day.



How much does it cost?

The cost for the Tyke program is $400

The cost for the Mite program is $495

There is also a new calendar fee program included in the above prices that is explained in detail below:



Can In-House Mites attend Skills Sessions?

Skills are typically held at the Waltham rink on Tuesday nights.  Skill sessions are currently only available to the travel teams.



When and how do we register?

Registration is done online.   All players must first register with USA Hockey at the website www.usahockey.com.  After receiving a confirmation from USA Hockey, you can register your child on the Waltham Youth Hockey web site www.walthamyouthhockey.org


Registration for the current season will be posted on the website when it is open.


What equipment is necessary?

All players are required to wear a helmet with a cage.  Full equipment is recommended for all skating sessions at the Tykes level, and is required at the In-House Mite level.  Tykes, especially the younger players can wear heavily padded snow pants and gloves at the beginning, when pushing a crate.  Sticks are usually incorporated after November for both levels.


Can I go on the ice with my child?

Parent coaches are encouraged and all coaches are required to wear a helmet on the ice.  Parent helpers are required to sign a Waltham city rink waiver and fill out a CORI form.


To coach at the In-House Mite level, a coach must attend a Level 1 USA Hockey clinic.  Registration for clinics is done through the www.usahockey.com website.  Waltham Youth Hockey will reimburse a coach who completes the clinic and is registered as a Level 1 coach by USA Hockey.  USA Hockey holds a number of clinics each fall.  There are generally no Level 1 clinics after December until the following season.  USA Hockey requires that all coaches on the ice be Level 1 certified by December. 


Can siblings go on the ice?

At the discretion of the coach, a sibling registered with Waltham Youth Hockey can help out on ice.  Anyone younger than high school must wear full equipment.  Siblings are allowed on the ice to assist the coaches in providing demonstrations.  It is not a time for free skating or for practicing their own skills. 


What if I have additional questions?

Please feel free to contact the In-House Director with any addition questions or concerns.


Brendan Campbell