Posted Friday, October 4, 2013-- 6:20 p.m.
Just like any hockey game, these athletes play under the same rules.
"They move the puck like you would in a normal hockey game," said head coach, Jeff Sauer.
With unstoppable enthusiasm...
"When I get out on the ice, I still feel like a little kid," said U.S. Paralympic sled hockey athlete, Joshua Sweeney.
And undeniable athleticism.
"This is a team that's going to represent the country in the Olympics," said Sauer.
These 18 players are paralympic athletes on the 2014 sled hockey team training in Madison this weekend.
26-year-old Joshua Sweeney is one of the players. He was injured serving as a marine in Afghanistan in 2009.
"Just on a routine patrol stepped on an IED," said Sweeney.
Less than a year after losing his legs, he became an Olympic athlete.
"Finding sled hockey, it's kind of given me a second chance, and now I took it more seriously, and I'm glad I did," said Sweeney. "It's really nice to be able to represent my country again in a new way."
15-year-old Declan Farmer was born without legs, now the second youngest on the team, sled hockey is just one of many talents.
"I've done sailing, wrestling, soccer, finding sled hockey when I was 8 or 9," said Farmer. "I've never looked at it as a disability."
When they're on the ice, there are no disabilities.
"They get out on the ice and it's like a freedom for them," said Sauer.
"We're all out there just playing a game," said Sweeney.
But off the ice, it's much more than that.
"Finding sled hockey gives me that reason to get up in the morning and do everything I need to do to be the athlete and person I want to be," said Sweeney.
They're playing against the u-s national developmental sled hockey team Saturday night. That's at 5:00 at the Madison Ice Arena. It's free and open to the public.