These are the incremental steps for building shooting technique. This assumes the passing fundamentals are also being worked on. Note that some of these drills use the physics of momentum and inertia to help teach. As is often noted through scientifically gathered data, shooting strength comes 65% from the lower body. And the longer your hand is on the ball, the faster it moves as it can accelerate that whole distance.
Each practice do at least the first 3 in sequence. Done typically starting on top at offensive positions 2,3,4. Makes players have spatial awareness so that 3 is further back than 2,4. Do this consistently every practice so players know what they should be doing. Refinement of technique will be continuous, even though it is the same every time. We often use 50 fly for a shot that misses the goal (no bar) to begin with putting shots on the cage while also guaranteeing a good warmup for the goalie. After the first three, add one or more of 4,5,6.
- Rise, pickup and shoot (first with halos for goalie, then add high corners making goalie block), serves as pull-down drill for goalie
- Rise, pickup, attack/lunge, rise and shoot (2 and 4 make shooting angle better on attack, expand shots to low and skip as well (coach’s call on placement, practicing specific shot locations)
- Rise, pickup, attack/lunge, rise, 3 fakes rising higher and shoot (fakes continue to increase shooting angle)
- Pass, crosspass back – At 2 and 4, start exactly the same, rise, pickup, attack/lunge, fake (like 2), then lead pass to partner who swims to ball with transfer to strong arm, one fake to set goalie and pass back for catch and shoot. The shooter after pass to partner kicks inside of post for catch and shoot. The shooter never swims, all lunges. Do this strong side, then cross-face side for shooter. After the shot, the passer comes back up the middle of cage as a defender for next two players as the pass must go over, then swims out of drill before shot.
- 8-offense with 2 defenders in front of each at 4-5 meters, goalie and defender sync so defender takes away strong side. Point of the drill is to beat the defender strong side with the lunge after pass to partner for a catch and shoot in open lane.
- Drop drill on each post alternating, first with set, defense, attacker, then add set , with passer focusing on wet pass away from D. Remembering to attack forward after set pass. Defense works hard, walking out to attacker, then quickly crashing back to set, then turning around taking away the strong side. Shooter must shoot in strong half of goal beating defender. Attacker starts outside of post, so movement increases shooting angle before set pass. Remember to lunge back if necessary to pull defense away from set. Then attack forward after pass again.
- The Move – shooting with someone on your back while driving. Spin ball with strong hand, both hands back, knees up (strong knee higher), rise up taking ball forward one fake, shot. This is also practice to not get kicked out on defense, putting hands up high when The Move started. Keep pushing with chest to goalie, and only tip ball and hand if offense makes mistake to bring ball back. Make the offense finish through goalie with your pressure.
Other shooting drills
- Break down the basic pass with 2 arm breaststroke lunge forward with strong arm on ball, then dragging the ball back, moving hips and rising with ball back and above head, before full smooth pass supporting with off-hand
- Cross drive and shoot – lines at 2 and 4 alternating, passer behind driver with ball. Drive to cross post, bring up knees to loaded position, strong leg kicks out toward passer. Come up to pass and shoot in one smooth motion staying up on legs.
- Give and go — from 2 or 4, pass to 1 or 5, respectively, and drive ball-side. 1 or 5 clears up/out and passes back. Do this when set not facing that side.
- Drive and shoot – drive to catch and shoot or use The Move if getting inside water. Start with 3 to 4 (2) pass then drive. Two ways:
- ball-side, ensure deep wing (5/1) moves up/out to carry defender and (4/2) makes the extra pass to the deep wing to feed the driver, practicing outside-in passing fundamental. Can do this with increasing amount of perimeter defenders.
- off-side, establishing the standard offense, or 5-offense, sometimes with full perimeter D on 3,4 and set who moves to make driving space.
- Counterattack release to shot – 1-on-0 lateral movement practice after a counter attack release, catch and dribble forward. Lunge, rise, lateral move (with lunge if possible), rise and shoot, as this crosses cage typically from right to center. 2 shots sometimes (either cross low weak, or strong if the goalie over compensates, either skip or safe high corner). 50 fly if goalie blocks you or you miss the cage.
- Foul and shot, practicing proper technique for drawing the foul by quarter turn right, head high, left arm over defenders left elbow to keep high. Then don’t grab the ball until looked at goalie and established leg support and moved so ball is behind.
- 10-shots – catch-and-shoot with perfect passes, from short distance