Qualities for a Field Hockey Midfielder
Here at Revolution Field Hockey Camps, we realize the importance of developing all players at all positions. After all, field hockey is a team sport, and while it’s important to have a handful of game-changers that can do damage at any particular time, it won’t be any good if the rest of the team can’t support them.
For the baseball fans in the house, just think of Mike Trout. His statistics and accomplishments already make him an inner-circle Hall of Famer before his age-28 season. Yet, the Los Angeles Angels have made the playoffs just once since Trout’s first full season (2012). And in that one appearance, they were swept out of the playoffs in the first round.
The same kind of mindset comes into play for field hockey. Our camps boast some of the best and brightest minds in the sport on a yearly basis, and at places like our Maryland Field Hockey Camps, we always strive for as low of a camper-to-coach ratio as possible. That’s our big goal because everyone knows that the most learning happens when instruction is individualized and personal. This allows a young athlete to not only really sink their teeth into what a coach is saying, but to also digest it and take those lessons home in order to apply them the next time they’re on the field.
While every single field hockey position is important, we’re going to focus on midfielders today. What qualities are needed to make not just a good, but a great midfielder? There are more than what’s below, but let’s start with these three.
As we’ve already mentioned in these pages, the importance of pre-screening the field to assess a situation before it actually takes place is a vitally important aspect of being a good field hockey player, and it goes hand-in-hand with having good vision. Identify where space on the field is and make sure you position yourself in such a way that it looks as if you have tons of time and space to do whatever you want with the ball.
This is done by looking up and looking around to see what the particular game situation is looking like.
Having a Presence
Midfielders are an important part of a field hockey team because they’re the glue between the two ends of the field – they’re both part attack and part defense. It takes a lot of work to hone your skills and command a large presence in each of the above aspects but having control over situations and the ability to make good decisions is what will truly separate you from the rest of your competition at the position.
Ability to Change the Game
How exactly can a midfielder change a field hockey game? Well, one of the easier answers to that question is to develop a skill for breaking through the defensive line of your opponent. That puts the pressure on them to not only stop you, but to also try and anticipate what you’ll be done next with the ball in your possession.