At Vida Footy, we use grids regularly in our sessions and holiday programs because they teach players at all levels fundamentals that directly help with real game situations. Grids can be employed at all levels, including tackers! Make sure you modify the grid so that they work and watch your players improve their tactics and game awareness.
Different types of Grids
There are many types of grids with many variations you can use to work on different parts of the game. Let’s start with the size of the area. If you want to work on handballing, use grids sizes from 5×5 to 10×20 meters. Kicking grids can also vary, obviously depending on what you need to work on. Grids can have defenders too. You can make it where there is less defenders than attackers, and visa versa. Make sure you have a clear focus on the desired output of your grid and modify the rules and size to match.
What do you learn from grids?
Grids are a way to teach your players the fundamental tactics and movement patterns of the game. You can use groups to reinforce technical skills, but ultimately you are working on the following aspects
– Passing on a 45
– Blocking for team mates
– Constant movement
– Creating space
– Quick hands or kicks under pressure
– Leading to the correct areas
– Decision making
One of the most important skills to pass on to your players is where to move to within the grid. This will be something to look out for throughout your use of the grids.
Tackers coaches and coaches of young teams, please try and incorporate small handball grids into your training as we have seen over the years, players as young as 7 really benefiting from these activities.
Coaches of older teams, remember grids are used by AFL clubs, so make sure you try and incorporate them into your training schedule.
Vida Footy is excited to bring you this 6-week intensive training program focusing on GPS data to improve development & performance.
No longer are how many possessions a player gets good enough. The demand is for data that reveals how players affected the contest and whether they ran defensively once the ball was turned over, giving a better indication of how individual players and teams, in general, are tracking.
The data now readily available includes repeat sprints, overall distance covered during a match, and work rate. “Teams can plan training sessions based on game data, replace generic fitness testing with footy-specific drills and use the data for recruiting purposes, so they know when an U18 player is ready to perform like a senior player.”Mr Westover said Catapult Sport
The program will run for 6 weeks and feature three sessions per week where all players in the program will be wearing GPS trackers to monitor their running and repeat efforts. The stats will be made available for the players and training sessions will be designed around the results of the data. The focus areas of the program will be
- Intensive running
- Skill and fundamental development
- Strength, speed, and agility
- contested ground ball – developing body positioning
- contested marking – developing body positioning
There will be two age brackets for the sessions with a cap number of 10 per group (due to restrictions)
- Group 1 – 11 to 14 years old
- Group 2 – 15 to 18 years old
- Location: Veneto Club Bulleen or Ford Park Ivanhoe – To be confirmed
- Start Date: Tuesday 10th November
- Last Session Date: Sunday 20th December
- Days of the week: Tuesday, Thursday & Sunday
- Session Times:
- Group 1 – Tue & Thu 4.30pm to 6.00pm, Sunday 10.00am to 11.30am
- Group 2 – Tue & Thu 6.00pm to 7.30pm, Sunday 11.30am to 1.00pm
Due to limited places, if you are wanting to join this program please register quickly, as once we are full, we can not take any further players.
Transitioning out of defence is one of the most important parts of your tactics on game day. Not only does it get you out of defence, but it can, if done quickly, move the ball into the forward line fast.
One of the best ways to use this defensive to attacking tactic is when the ball is intercepted or possession gained on one side of the ground, the player with the ball quickly switches the play to the other side of the ground.
The reason why this can work is:
– Most players will be on the side of the ground where the ball was previously, opening up space to the transition side.
– Because the defending team was previously attacking forward, they may not be manned up on their player, leaving the attacking team open to transition the ball forward.
– Opens the field up, making room for fast play
How to practice and Implement this strategy.
First of all keep using the term “in one way out the other”. This will remind your players to scan the field when they are in this position to potentially use it. Get your players to swivel their heads to scan for options every-time they get the ball. Therefore if a player gets the ball, they have an option to kick the ball down the line. They can also transition the play across the ground, or into the middle (only if a player is well and truly open).
Kicking the ball down the line should be encouraged only when there are no options left, or the player feels that is the best tactic to use in that particular situation. Maybe their best marking player has a mismatch, or you are winding the clock down and kick it close to the boundary line, looking for a stoppage.
Key points around Ground Ball
- Cleans hands ( 1 touch )
- Always look to get low using your legs
- Spread fingers and get dirt in your fingernails when picking up the ball
- Eyes always on the ball
- Footwork, always adjusting feet prior to picking the ball up
- Create challenges how many effective ground balls eg 1TOUCH and handballs can you do without error in 60sec
- 1.5 meter apart Rowell to pick GB up and HB back while partner rolls ball left to right continuous effort after 60sec swap over
- Working on footwork and continuous movement ( EFFORT )
- When you HB back keep alternating hands and feet
- Increase the length and speed of drill
- Start behind the cone while your partner rolls the ball out for you to run towards once you receive GB and then HB back you must backpedal around the cone going the other way
- Increase the speed adding in more pressure ( EFFORT )
- Keep a focus with your footwork eg Right HB = LF Left HB = RF
- Increase the length of handball when comfortable
- Two balls required – Clean hands ( 1 TOUCH )
- One handballs the other hits the ball back with the footy making it challenging
- Alternate hands and increase the speed as you become comfortable
- Footwork really important always be on your toes
- Increase the speed and length of handball when comfortable ( EFFORT )
- One Ball required – Rowell starts with ball
- HB to your partner who then taps the ball to an area making you work to pick the GB up
- The player tapping the ball must look to challenge their EFFORT and change of direction to work on agility
- Requires a high work rate in a small area ( EFFORT )
During the off-season is the best time to work on your fundamentals before next season. The following article will go through the main steps in working on your kicking technique.
If you would like further help with your kicking and other skills for that matter, why not come and try our Skills Sessions this term or holiday programs?
For all the information about the program, click here.
How to improve your kicking technique
Kicking needs to be worked on throughout all levels of Junior Footy. After watching some local senior footy on the weekend I was again surprised to see so many adults kicking with bad technique. The main problems I saw were;
- Two hand ball drop
- High Ball Drop
- Tossing the ball up slightly to kick
- Kicking across the line of the ball
- Ball not spinning properly
These issues can all be fixed throughout the junior development stage, and as coaches one of your goals should be to leave players with better skills than what they can into to the year with.
The biggest thing we need to work on with our players is the ball drop. The ball drop accounts for most players ability to be a good kick or not.
The ball drop is made up of:
- Ball drop height
- Ball drop position
Holding the ball correctly is important as it assists in getting the rest of the kick right. Players want to make sure they hold the ball with their hands on the outside of the ball. Then you want to tell your players to point the end of the ball to the ground (a lot of players will point it to where they want to kick it).
Ensure you align the ball predominantly on their preferred kick side, trying to avoid swaying from left to right.
Ball drop height & position
The ball drop should be below the players hips, with their fingers pointing to the ground. The opposite arm then goes out to the side to assist in balancing. Getting your players to really understand the ball drop with significantly help their kicking.
How to add technique work into a session
During the warm-up phase of the session you can add some simple kicking (2 players one ball) to ensure plenty of volume. You can then go around to every player and asses their kick. Get players to try and hit a particular goal of kicking and marking 10 in a row, or count how many kicks they have had.
Additionally, before the session starts, players must do 100 kicks to themselves on each footy before training starts.
Throughout the training session, you can separate the group into smaller groups, and have one of those be a technique group. Remember, this is not limited to really young players, as a lot of players even up to the age of colts need to work on kicking technique.
*These videos are available for members only, for more info and how to get access to the videos click here
Again, there are plenty more on the website. Simply tick kicking in the search options and go from there.