Karl Subban: How We Did It?

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Parenting isn’t easy and even though there’s a plethora of parenting books, blogs and websites out there, they usually just make you feel even more clueless. How We Did It: The Subban Plan for Success in Hockey, School and Life by Karl Subban is a memoir with refreshing wisdom and inspiration for parents who want to be involved in their child’s development without being an overbearing helicopter parent. A loving husband and father to five children, Karl has three sons playing in the NHL (every hockey parent’s dream) and two daughters who teach, and has been a successful educator and coach for over three decades. His memoir sincerely describes the highs and lows Karl and his wife, Maria, went through raising their family.

Karl was born in Jamaica and moved to Sudbury, Ontario when he was 12 years old. Playing shinny with other kids in the neighbourhood and following the Montreal Canadiens on the French language TV station not only helped him fit into his new home, but led to a lifelong love affair with the game of hockey. Eventually Karl traded his skates for a basketball and became a successful player and coach with Lakehead University, but hockey remained close to his heart.

Working with kids at the Lakehead basketball camp, Karl discovered something he loved almost as much as hockey: teaching kids. As a result, Karl worked hard to complete university to become a teacher. He taught elementary school kids in Toronto and gladly accepted the challenge of teaching kids who were labelled difficult and needy. When Karl’s natural leadership skills began to emerge, he juggled family life, being a hockey dad and teaching duties to work towards becoming a school principal.

Karl loves kids and believes all children are born with the potential to make their dreams come true. In his memoir, Karl stresses that the most critical thing children need from parents is love and their time. Children don’t love hockey or basketball, or anything else as much as being with mom and dad. The memoir also highlights how parents can provide support and then get out of the way, so children will strive for success because they’re doing it for themselves. They aren’t living someone else’s dream or trying to please a parent.

In How We Did It, Karl doesn’t sugar coat the blood, sweat and tears his family experienced. Parenting isn’t easy, but Karl would probably say all that hard work is what makes you a better parent.

Karl Subban is the first author in the Writers at the Rose series. Karl will be interviewed by FOLD’s Artistic Director, Jael Richardson on Thursday, February 8th. Click here for tickets and information about performances at The Rose Theatre.



by C.J. Zvanitajs