The Lob-and-Dodge Drill develops the footwork necessary for successful defense. You’ll focus on improving defenders’ ability to approach dodging offensive players under control and in proper defensive position.

Key aspects of the drill include reacting to ball movement, approaching offensive players under control and “breaking down,” and playing live 1-on-1 defense from a variety of positions. No more than 12-15 players, as well as a goalie, should participate in this drill at a time.

Skill Level: Intermediate

Time Needed: 15 minutes

Theme: 1-on-1 defense

 

Description

  • Set four offensive players around the perimeter of the goal (the positions should mimic the perimeter positions of either a 1-4-1 or 2-2-2 offense) and one defender on the crease.
  • A coach lobs a ball to one of the offensive players, and the single defensive player sprints out to guard him.
  • The offensive player catches the ball, dodges the defender and goes to the goal.
  • Once he takes a shot or turns the ball over, a new defender steps in, the coach throws a new ball to another offensive player, and the drill repeats itself.

Variations

  • To make defenders focus on their footwork, give them short sticks instead of long sticks.
  • To increase the game-like feel of the drill, add a second offensive and defensive player on the crease, making it a 2-on-2 situation. Now, after the first offensive player catches the ball and dodges his defender, the second defender slides to meet him and the second offensive player curls to the ball to create a passing lane. The first offensive player can take the shot or find his open teammate.

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