At Play Netball we want everyone to have fun which is why we encourage everyone from all abilities to take part in our social leagues. Nevertheless, we understand a lot of you who do join haven’t played since school and are a little rusty when it comes to netball tactics. So, we thought it would be helpful to provide some tips on how to enhance your skills on the court. These 3 tips will also help prevent the umpire from blowing that whistle!
It might not be the most fun thing to work on but it’s essential to have perfect footwork when playing a match. You want to make sure when playing netball you’ve got light feet as this will prevent you from being called for footwork (which we all hate). You can practice your light feet at home or before a match by placing an agility ladder on the ground and take quick steps going in and out of the ladder. This will help improve your ability to react and staying on the balls of your feet. If you do not own an agility ladder, you can always resort to using chalk and draw the ladder on the pavement or driveway.
Also, if you are worried about lifting the wrong foot after receiving the ball, try landing on both feet at the same time, this gives you better posture when receiving the ball and gives you the option of which foot to use to move freely.
Don’t Rely on Overhead Balls.
We must all admit, it’s one of the easiest passes to use but the player we’re passing to doesn’t always receive the ball and this is because we’re making it easier for the opposition to intercept, especially when you’re stood behind them. Instead, try these two alternative passes:
Chest passes – it may take a little longer to get the ball down the court, but as long as you’re ball side you have a better chance of receiving the ball and getting it down to the goal third. With chest passes you also must make sure they are quick and consistent. These work best when your team is running diagonally down the court and running in an explosive movement to get free.
Bounce passes – these are excellent to use in the goal circle. By bounce passing the ball to GA or GS it prevents the tall defenders from using their long arms to intercept, instead they’ve got to try and bend down and reach the ball before your player who is already prepared to receive the pass. Again, make sure you are ball side as this will make it harder for the defence to intercept.
Use the whole court.
This is something that happens a lot, the entire team will run down the same channel with everyone bunched up, making it harder to pass the ball but also tricky to break free from the opposition. The whole court is there to be used so take advantage of it! A great example of using the whole court is during a side-line pass. Usually, players think it’s more helpful to be positioned close to the side-line as it’ll be easier for their teammate to spot them. Instead, be as far from the ball as you can and when your teammate is about to throw you run towards the ball. This enables you to break free from your marker and keep you moving; the only time you should be standing still is when you’ve got the ball!
We hope these pointers have been useful and please do try them the next time you are playing in our leagues as they will help increase your chances of scoring more goals, but also make the game run more smoothly and effectively.