Field Hockey Drills
Practice is important to do your best in any sport, and there are several field hockey drills and exercises to help you improve your field hockey game. Physically, field hockey players must have endurance to play the game, as well as have the skills and strength. In order to improve your skills, doing some of these exercises and field hockey drills will have a great impact on your skill level.
- Anaerobic power and endurance is important. Being able to endure continuous play for long periods of time with few intervals is crucial. In order to build up this power and tolerance, high intensity exercises, such as back-to-back sprints, help the players with speed and quickness, which is very important to the field hockey game. Long-distance running helps build endurance. When running, instead of running in a straight line, the player should change the path sporadically to mimic the actual field hockey game.
- Strength is critical to performance. Field hockey players need power for speed, acceleration, and making quick changes in direction. Building upper body strength helps with more powerful shots and longer distance of the shots. Doing weight training can add strength to the muscles in the upper body, which is often not included in field hockey drills.
- Flexibility and agility are an important part of your field hockey fitness. Grapevines and ladder drills help improve quick and precise movements. Just having speed and strength are of little benefit if the hockey moves are not preformed with skill. It is important to practice until the moves become automatic.
- Avoid over training and fatigue. When building up muscle power and muscle endurance, be sure both are developed equally without fatigue or over-training. Proper conditioning also helps to prevent injury.
- Training should take place on both artificial turf and grass. Artificial turf and grass place different strains on the body. Training exclusively on a synthetic surface may cause spinal shrinkage and other injuries. Proper training helps to reduce this risk.
- Field Hockey Drills. There are hundreds of field hockey drills and the coach determines which ones he feels are necessary to benefit his team which are determined by the strengths and weaknesses of his team. Some of the more common ones are: Team Relay which teaches the team to transfer the defense to be able to act quickly; Defense Awareness which shows a player how to dribble and avoid being tackled; Shooting and Goalscoring which instructs the players on how to get the final pass and then score a goal; and, Reverse Stick Hit which helps the players learn how to keep the stick low to the ground in the approach and follow through.