Coaching can be a pretty tough job, and for a unique sport like netball, it can really be a difficult task to teach your players how to be the best that they can be at it.
Because of that, you’ve likely been looking for different ways that you can break out of your shell and try out different drills that will help hone in on the most important skills that your players will need to utilize on the field. Let us help you out! Here are the top ten most effective netball training drills that you and your team can use.
1. Even Out Those Strides!
Warming up is all about getting your body ready to do what it needs to do in order to play. There are a few different ways that you can warm up your players, but one of the best is learning how to make their strides the same whether they’re going forward or backward.
Do this by making them go 6 steps forward, then 3 back, again and again until they’ve been up and down the court twice.
Encourage them to stand up straight and to keep all of their strides even, whether they’re going forward or backward.
2. Passing Through the Square
Put your players at three corners of a “square,” with an empty spot in the fourth corner. Player 1 will pass the ball to player 2 as player 2 is running to the empty spot. Player 2 will then pass to player 3, as player 3 is running to the empty spot. Player 3 will then pass the ball to player 1 as player 1 is running to the spot. They will continue in this rotation, speeding up as they go. This drill is all about coordination and passing quickly and properly.
3. Speed Taps
This is about learning how to maneuver around other players in order to get the ball effectively. Even though they won’t be taking the ball from each other, it’s more about being coordinated and quick on your feet. One player stands perfectly still, holding the ball right in front of them, about arm’s length away. The second player will use side steps in order to go around the first player, tapping the ball when they get to one side, and going back. After 45 seconds, the players switch and do the same thing.
4. Keep It Going!
This is all about speed and passing. For this, you will want three players in a triangle formation. One player (we’ll call them player 1) will be a bit further away from the other two. Player 2 and Player 3 each have a ball. Players 2 and 3 will take turns passing the ball to player 1. After 30 seconds, they will rotate (Player 1 in Player 3’s spot, Player 3 in Player 2’s spot, and Player 2 in Player 1’s spot) and then Player 1 and Player 3 will pass the ball to Player 2. Keep going in this rotation until everyone has done 3 30 second increments.
Intercepting during a pass is a hard skill to master, and this drill will help your netball players to be able to do it more effectively. For this drill, you need three players. Player 1 is off to the side. Player 2 and player 3 are about 10 feet apart, passing the ball between each other at a consistent pace. Player 1 comes from the side and tries to get the ball away from the two of them. Do this for about 10 turns for each player. Rotate until all three have had a chance to be the interceptor.
6. Batting Wild Passes
Sometimes, passing gets a bit out of control, so you need a little practice on how to get things back on track. Balance and aim are vital for this to work. This drill takes two players. They should stand about 6-8 feet apart. Player 1 takes the ball and passes it toward, but not to, player 2. The ball should go about 1 to 2 feet away from player 2, either to the left or right, alternating sides throughout the drill. Player 2’s job is to bat the ball back to player 1. Switch after 10 successful bats back.
7. Successful Short Passes
This is another drill that takes two players – it’s all about coordination and being able to pass while on the run. Player 1 is about 4 feet behind a line of some sort. Player 2 is about 15 feet away from player 1. Player 1 sprints to the line, and player 2 passes the ball to them. Player 1 immediately passes the ball back, turns around, and jogs back to their starting point. Repeat 10 times, and then switch player positions.
8. Quick Passes
For this drill, you’re going to be helping your players to practice running to and catching the ball, without stopping. Two players should stand approximately 10 feet apart. Player 1 has the ball, and they don’t move. Player 1 will then pass the ball toward their right, and then Player 2 has to sprint over and catch it without stopping. Then, they will pass it back to player 1 and go back to their original spot. Player 1 will then toss toward their left. They will continue this ten times, and then switch places.
9. Back and Forth, Bat and Receive
This gets your players ready for both batting and catching, then passing the ball. This takes three players, and they’re in a formation that looks like a rectangle (with the last corner empty). Player 1 is running back and forth between the two empty spots, but player 1 is going to start in front of player 2. Player 2 is going to pass player 1 the ball, and they’re going to catch it, and pass it back. Then, player 1 is going to run so that they’re across from player 3. Player 3 is going to pass the ball to player 1, but player 1 has to bat it back at that point. Repeat this 10 times, and rotate until all 3 players have had practice passing.
10. Back and Forth, Step it Up a Notch
For this, you need four players. Players 1 and 2 will stand on the line, about 10 feet from each other. Player 3 will stand in front of Player 1, and Player 4 will stand in front of player 2, but about 2 feet back from player 3’s “line.” Player 1 and 2 will each have a ball. Player 1 will pass to player 3, and then player 3 will run to the spot across from player 4, passing it back to them. At the same time, player 4 passes their ball to player 2, player 2 sprints and bats the ball back to player 3. This continues to alternate, and after 5 passes, everyone rotates until everyone has had a chance to be at each spot. There are just so many drills that you can your team can utilize when you’re practicing together, so it was hard to pick ten that will cover the most skills in the least amount of time. They’re all pretty effective, and many people use them as part of their netball training routine. Which of these have you used before? Which ones are you excited to use? No matter what you are doing with your netball team, these drills can play a huge role in helping you to get your team ready to roll for their next game or scrimmage.