This article on field hockey sweeper tips will provide some sound advice for sweepers that will require a conversation with the coach. Field hockey is a sanctioned sport and is found at the high school and collegiate level as well as local, state and international club levels. Field hockey is a sport that offers much for the athlete and with it there are rules and regulations.
- Should you want to be on a team that plays a sweeper, consider the following tips. Be agile and alert. When an attack ensues, as the “last line of defense” you need total awareness of where the ball is and the opposing attacking forwards. Keep your footing wide enough to create an immediate balance but not so wide as to hamper quick movement.
- Keep your stick with the head in your dominate hand to provide leverage and easy use. Use your other defenders to guide and spot you. They need to move as a unit and follow the flow of the ball as well with backside support. As sweeper you should have the authority to bark out commands for position and support; use this to your advantage.
- Finally, consider wearing additional protective gear. A helmet with clear face guard should be the number one piece of additional gear to obtain. Consider heavier gloves, but be sure they do not hamper your movement.
A good sweeper should be able to move to a full back position without any effort. Mid-field is another good option for this agile player. The idea of the sweeper is to play the goal line as the last line of defense for the team aside from the goalie. The problem, as discovered over time, is that this is a dangerous spot for an “unprotected participant” that is a player without goalie gear to reside. In today’s game it is not outlawed of course, but many teams are moving away from the schema.