Coaching Equipment

//Coaching Equipment
Coaching Equipment 2017-08-20T16:28:02+00:00

MT13's guidance notes on Coaching Equipment.


You can never have enough balls. Yes, you don’t want balls running through the middle of drills and therefore creating an issue with regard to safety. The point is that the fewer the number of balls available then the more a drill will have to be stopped for a ‘ball collect’ and therefore the more time players aren’t taking part in a drill. Recent trends are showing a move back to using smooth balls and so for the same price that you would potentially pay for a dimple ball you could perhaps get 2 smooth balls.


Agility is obviously a key component of the modern game but all too often you only see agility ladders being used as part of warm ups. Instead incorporate such tasks into stick and ball drills i.e. players could run through the agility ladder before receiving the first pass.

Kneeling Pads

A common problem when performing skills such as Reverse Stick Stopping, at the Penalty Corner, and Slapping is that players don’t get low enough. By using kneeling pads players have little choice as they are kneeling at this point and so are low to the floor. After a while remove the kneeling pads and players can now practice these skills from a standing position but with the appreciation that they need to get low.

Bigger & Softer Balls

Use different size and types of balls to help players develop their skills. When introducing the hit, for instance, use mini soft footballs. The ball (mini soft football) is obviously bigger than a hockey ball and so players should have more chance of hitting it, instead of swinging and missing. After a while of learning to hit with the larger sized ball this ball should then be replaced with a normal hockey ball.

Balls Machines

Core Skills, within junior players, are often being criticised and yes we need to improve the ability to keep possession before we can make big strides forwards with tactical considerations. However ball machines are fantastic as they offer a repeated feed so players can expect a constant ball that is either bouncing or flat depending on how the machine is programmed. This can therefore rapidly improve players receiving skills.

Skills Hurdles

3D Skills are now common in the modern game and so players need to practice these skills frequently to become efficient at them. One of the best methods for practicing these types of skills is by teaching players to lift the ball over objects that are not players sticks.