When starting in Netball, you can do this first on your own to perfect your skills. Focusing on the basics of Netball by yourself will help enhance your own abilities before taking it on to working with your team and connecting it as a team sport. Here we have some Netball drills set for young, budding players who are just starting their journey into Netball. These are beginners exercises that can be used for PE at home or individual netball play at school or clubs.
Netball For Beginners
Equipment – A size 4 Netball, cones, throw down spots, rebound Crazy Catch, and Netball net
Netball for beginners and individual netball drills do not need to be over complicated and require lots of equipment. Having access to a netball ring at home or at school is great, but there are also plenty of skills that are available to help players develop. These include:
- Hand-eye coordination
Netball is a fast-paced sport and so developing these skills early on will help players as they progress in the sport, no matter position they want to play. We will cover these skills that will help players improve.
Agility and Footwork Drills
Netball involves all types of movements for players, which include moving forwards, backwards, and sideways. Getting your footwork right in netball can be a tricky part of the game, but is something simple to improve with PE at home or skills classes. Two great activities to work on these are:
Activity 1 - Figure of Eight
This drill is great for a warm up for the player, and improving their footwork. Place two cones about 2m and get your player to move around the cones whilst facing forward in a figure of 8 motion. The steps need to be kept short and sharp. To move this on players can go forward to a cone, move sidewards around the cone, and backwards to the second cone, move sidewards again and repeat.
There are a variety of way that you can pass the ball to a teammate in Netball, and so it is best to get players to practice these as much as possible. The passing styles are:
- Chest pass
- One-handed pass
- Overhead pass
- Lob Pass
All of these need to be done with accuracy and power. The best way to improve the passing is to use a wall, or a Crazy Catch net.
Activity 2 – Chest and overhead wall pass
Get your child or students to stand approximately two metres away from the wall and any other player, and get them to throw chest passes against the wall. For this, the players hold the netball with two hands either side of the ball. Bring the ball to your own chest and then throw the ball similar to if pushing it away from the body. To help players with their accuracy, use chalk to mark an ‘X’ on the wall and then get the players to aim for this mark. If using a Crazy Catch, an adult or teacher can hold this as the players come one by one to aim at the net.
This can be moved to doing overhead passing, where players hold the ball in two hands, raise the ball over their heads and then release after the ball to aim at an ‘X’ mark higher up the wall
Catching and Turning
During a match, players will generally have to turn once they’ve collected a pass so this is a good step to getting into a game situation. This will work on the agility and balance of players.
Activity 3 – Turning it around
Players continue with the wall throws but then focus on catching the ball back again. For this, players may want to stand closer to the wall to help with how they catch. To start off, players can catch the ball in a body basket, which is where arms are facing upwards and the ball lands inbetween the forearm and bicep. As players progress to catching the ball using their hands outstretched, they can take a step away from the wall.
To bring in turning, once the player catches the ball, they torn their body first 90 degrees and be ready to pass. To do this, the player selected which way they will turn. If they are turning left, then to catch the ball the right foot should be forward, and once the ball is caught the player switches their balance to the left foot and opens the body up to move the right foot round. Repeat this by turning right.
When moving in attack or when trying to put off players when defending, jumping is a key area for players in improving their agility. It is a good way to bring in balance and enhance player’s agility.
Activity 4 – Stepping Stones
To help players with their jumping onto certain spots and improve their agility use Throw Down Spots that mark where they need to land. Use a series of cones to create gates for players to run up to, and then have a Throw Down Spot set at a distance from the gate that players must jump onto. Players can start this using both feet, and then progress to take off and landing with one foot. Also, if players find this easy, then move the spots further from the gates. Set up a gate path for players to move around the court like the diagram shown.
These are a few simple Netball Drills either PE at Home or Individual Netball skills classes for young players whilst maintaining social distancing. It can be difficult to run sessions with team sports, but we hope that these sessions will bring in some variety for classes and players. Do follow England Netball for more information on the return of Netball in UK.