The coaches for each age division will follow a practice protocol yet will also have the freedom to adapt their training according to the developmental needs of their players. Each practice will consist of skill training and scrimmaging. The Coyotes Field Hockey Club has identified the following skills as necessary for the development of a great field hockey player and goalie. These skills will be part of our practice protocol.
Tracking (carrying on angle)
Shows ability to identify the space and move with ball there
Cutting/leading to space
“Flag run” leads
Immediate lead after pass
Pull right, pull left, pull back
3D skills – forehand lift, reverse stick lift, pop, Argentinian dribble
Deceptive skills – fake over ball, body sway
Acceleration after elimination/cut off defender
Ability to execute under pressure and/or with limited space
Possesses large shot selection and can appropriately choose shot based on varying scenarios
Push bounce, hit, reverse hit, sweep, reverse sweep on goal
1v1 versus goalie
Ability to earn offensive corner
Push pass – off left foot, off right foot
Bounce pass – off left foot, off right foot
Reverse stick reception
Ability to execute passing and receiving on the move
Defensive footwork and positioning
Shave tackle (reverse tackle)
Open field defense
Offensive Corner Skills
Defensive corner skills
Young goalies need to master the basics of footwork, balance, and clearing. Repetition is essential. Understanding the rules and defensive objectives will build confidence in communication. The goal is to build a consistent goalkeeper.
Types of Goalkeepers:
Goal is to create a keeper with a healthy, situational combination of all three.
Read, anticipate, recognize if you’re a about to be in a 1v1
Understand your positioning in the circle (home, yard, street) on where to meet the forward on the 1v1
Keep a stick+ distance between you and the attacker to be able to keep them in front
Work your feet. Stay on your feet at all costs.
Avoid: rushing out too fast, rushing out too high, getting too close to attacker if not going for ball, grounding self by diving too early, using stick if you struggle to stay balanced, leaning toward the side you’re working your feet toward, being too far away/caught in no man’s land--basically 1v1s are hard.
Know GK related rules
Know defensive 25 rules
Know penalty stroke rules/what constitutes a penalty stroke
Know all corner rules
Tight and quick footwork
Efficient and sharp when changing angles
Stay low throughout and practice keeping eyes up
Break down steps to a stop before changing angle
Stay balanced at all times even when changing direction
Avoid: kicking kickers together, bobbing up and down, and going around cone corners before you have completely stopped.
Weight forward when going for ball
Read it quick off the stick
Go 100%— a half-hearted decision is a whole mistake
Avoid: leaning back, guessing, reading too much into other body and stick cues
End line play:
Protect the “Goalie Gate” which is end-line to stroke mark when facing ball on end-line
Practice your range of each save. Can you reach with just a kick save, lunge save, prep step- kick save, prep step- lunge save, dive, or do you need to drop step to your goal line and re-adjust your angle?
Stay home on your post if no pressure is on ball or if you’re in doubt
Before slide tackling on end-line look for cues: attacker’s head is down, going with speed, not in control, you have pressure on ball
Speed of ball and distance of ball away will determine what GK will need to do
Avoid: half decisions, stepping toward the ball if not going to slide tackle, rounded drop step to get on angle, bringing body weight up, watching ball go thru “goalie gate” without getting a touch on it or at least drop stepping quick to where it’s going
Prep-step is everything (small side shuffle, then open up to kick save or lunge clear)
Each clear should hit the sweet spot on either your kicker, glove, stick, leg guard
Accuracy in clearing: clear where you mean to in order to avoid rebounds
Clear through each ball & re-adjust angle to where the ball is now
Avoid: leaning back, bringing weight up, not re-adjusting to new angle.
During play: Name, then command, degree of urgency
Triage: Start with getting pressure on ball, then recognize who is the next most dangerous pass, and therefore who you can assign to handle
Confident communication stems from understanding the rules, your defenders’ abilities, and your defensive/team objectives.
Avoid: pointless talking, using the same tone all the time, talking without moving with the play yourself, relying on just you to communicate when playing circle defense.