Five Field Hockey Drills to Hone Playing Skills
The right field hockey drills teach young players the core skills necessary for success. There’s no better way to perfect those skills than practicing at a summer field hockey camp.
If you’re wondering how to get better at field hockey, practice, repetition, and expert instruction are the most critical elements. At a summer camp, young players can learn field hockey skills and drills from expert coaches that help individuals get to the next level.
For 10 years, Revolution Field Hockey Camps has been helping athletes excel in the sport. Here are our five top field hockey drills that will help you or your field hockey player gain the expertise needed for excellence.
1. Pull Back and Change Direction
This drill helps a player slow down and regain control of the ball. Three lines of players assemble with three cones set up 10 yards before them. When the coach blows the whistle, players sprint towards the cones with a speed run. When they get about three yards from the cone, they reach out with the ball and pull it back to change direction.
As players get better at the drill, defenders can replace the cones.
2. Eliminate the Defender
Eliminating defenders opens up the offense to provide more goal-scoring opportunities. This drill lets you practice eluding the defense and getting a good pass or shot on goal. This 2-on-1 drill has one offensive player without the ball against a defender. The offensive player leans in with their stick indicating where they want a pass, then fakes quickly to the other side.
When the defender commits, the offensive player can spin around the back of the defender to the original side, leaving them wide open to receive the pass from their teammate.
3. Stickwork Skills
Learning how to dribble correctly is important for field hockey success and players of all skill levels benefit from practicing their stickwork. This drill teaches three basic stickwork techniques.
Create a pylon course that lets players practice the following:
- Controlled dribble. The player keeps the ball close to the body to move in tight spaces.
- Loose or speed dribble. The player needs to break away quickly. Have the player use just one hand for this technique while the other pumps for speed.
Indian dribble. A diagonal dribble that lets the player pull and push the ball from one direction to the other.
4. Flat Stick Tackle
Every player, even goaltenders, should know how to make a flat stick tackle. A good drill to practice the flat stick tackle is to have two players line up 10 yards apart, one with the ball. The offensive player dribbles toward the defender. The defender positions themselves crouched down with the stick against the ground. As the offensive player approaches, the defender lunges forward to disrupt the play.
5. Strength and Conditioning
Field hockey players are constantly in motion, so a high fitness level is a must. Players should commit to strength training with body weights and exercises that include squats, glute bridges, lunges, push-ups, and triceps dips. Conditioning should consist of long-distance running and sprints.
Go To a Field Hockey Camp
For more field hockey tips from expert coaches, try an elite-level summer camp. To learn more about our coaches, approach, and summer field hockey camps around the country, click here.