Apart from those players who have the gift of a natural ability to always make the best pass and forever be in the right place at the right time, many players will simply drift through their match performances because they don’t spend enough time finding out how they can improve their netball match abilities.
The players that reach the top of their game, at whatever level they play, whether for fun, in local leagues, regional or national, will devote time to train and learn how to increase their personal and tactical abilities. Here are three relatively simple ways that you can better your own personal performances.
1. Improve what you already know
Whether you are a goal shooter or goal attack, you will always wish to improve your goal shooting within the goal circle. You will see players practising shooting regularly, but the majority choose either straightforward positions to shoot from or practice the easier and shorter shots.
While you will always wish to improve your goal ratios to shots, by practising the more difficult shots from more tricky angles, you will rapidly improve the number of goals that you will score from positions where people least expect you to be successful.
Players that move from local leagues on to the national schools or the Premier Leagues are not necessarily more naturally capable than you. In reality, they will train harder and be more willing to learn. The biggest difference, apart from improving what you already know, is to be coached by a better quality instructor who will introduce you to a greater game philosophy and more specific tactics.
2. Fitness is the key to the fourth quarter
The game is not usually won during the first three quarters. Where the score is relatively close, it is mostly about the performance in the fourth quarter, where you overcome the opposition as they begin to falter.
The key to a great performance in the fourth quarter is often linked to the fitness of the players. The best teams are able to continue to score late goals because they are still operating at a high fitness level all the way to the last minute of the match.
Where players become tired, their minds react a little slower than a fit and resourceful team. Greater fitness may be all that is required to be able to score last-minute goals.
3. Adapt to your team’s coaching plan
Although individuals may have great personal ideas of how to play, it is only when all the players of the team learn to adapt to your coach’s tactics and favourite moves, will you feel that your abilities can progress up a level.
When all the members of the team fully understand what everyone is going to do in any given move, positional awareness both in attack and defence will be increased. After a while, some of the coach’s tactics will become second nature and you won’t have to devote time to consider your next move as your brain will already be thinking ahead of the current move and all of your team will know the next two or three moves at all times. This awareness will help guide your team to both defend better and provide more scoring opportunities.
In theory, you already know how to improve your netball ability. In reality, it’s all about applying what you already know.
Want more tips on team sports and teamwork? Chris Jenkinson writes for Netbusters.
Image credit: Naparazzi