The Goalie Guru Story
A note from The Goalie Guru Founder, Corey Brenner.
Hockey was my life as a kid. Growing up with two brothers, one of whom was also a goalie, new equipment was pretty scarce. We spent a lot of time modifying old gear-removing pieces to make it lighter, adding layers to make it fit better, or just finding a way to make it more comfortable. From the first moment I held a goalie stick, it felt like something was missing. My coach told me to hold the stick with one finger over the paddle, but my finger kept slipping off.
I couldn’t help but think it would be a lot easier if there was something under my finger to hold onto.
Even with the crudest of grips beneath my pointer finger, I immediately felt a tighter grip on the paddle. I noticed the pucks finding their way to the corner more often. Unfortunately, grips were tedious to create, and often imperfect in usage. I needed a better prototype.
Luckily, my brother was more than willing to test prototypes with me. The first versions were messily taped structures of rock, clay, wood, and even one out of a carved antler. But eventually, I determined a shape and size that made sense. We each used plastic versions of it the entirety of our college careers.
After college, I worked for years as a goalie coach. I often noticed kids holding the stick wrong. Especially at the younger ages, goalies would hold their stick too high, drop it after a shot, or struggle to pick it up off the ice. I placed prototypes on a few sticks and in addition to gaining confidence, goalies developed muscle memory and began naturally learning the right way to hold their sticks!
Connecting with Factor31:
With the shape and concept already in place, I connected with an expert on 3D modeling, and the ambidextrous, one-size-fits-all version of The Goalie Guru was born. With the ability to be placed at a variety of angles to fit all sizes, preferences, and levels of play, the last piece of the puzzle had been found.
Assembling the first 200 by hand for Goalie Monkey:
After signing a distribution deal with Goalie Monkey, a friend and I assembled the first 200 packages by hand for the 2018 official product launch in Colorado. It was unbelievable seeing goalies of all ages try out the perfectly formed rubber grip that had once been just a crude carving.
Confidence and Performance:
It’s been an incredible journey and I’m so happy to be able to provide a service that helps coaches and goalies of all levels. Just as the sport of hockey eventually accepted the benefit of a curved blade, I hope that in time, The Goalie Guru grip aid will be an incorporated piece of all major goalie sticks. I look forward to sharing The Goalie Guru with goalies around the world, helping build confidence, improve performance, and get a grip on goaltending!