Lacrosse Coaching

Changing lacrosse grip—a case study

This skill correction protocol deals with a specific example, namely the use by most lacrosse team members of an excessively tight grip on the lacrosse stick. You can modify parts of the protocol to suit your own team performance problem by simply substituting your selected problem description for the "tight grip" example.

Only correct one technical fault at a time, so as not to overload the player. The temptation to correct more than one thing must be strongly resisted, at least at the start. In this protocol, then, we are dealing with the grip and nothing else. Even if you know there are other imperfections requiring correction, and these show up during this protocol, leave those errors for later.

Ideally, you would try this protocol with only one player at a time because when you are dealing with a group or a whole team there is a lot to concentrate on and at this stage the process is still new to you. However, if you have several players (e.g. up to five) who have the same problem with the grip, and I assume you will have, then you can try this with all of them at the one time and in the one session. Players who do not have the problem with the grip do not need to participate in grip correction although they will have benefited from having gone through the preamble session, of course, In any case, their turn will come later with other imperfections that need to be corrected.

Another benefit of taking only five out of say, ten, players who have the grip problem and doing O/N with those five is that you can then see the difference in improvement among those five who did O/N, versus those five who did not. It's a kind of do-it-yourself experiment to demonstrate the effectiveness of O/N.

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Lacrosse coach targets other skill correction issues

I look forward to receiving some protocols for working with my young lacrosse players. We are conducting a shooting camp in the first week of July. Here are some fundamental changes we have to make with poor shooters.

  1. Grip: Old Way is tight like they are holding an axe. New Way is light with thumbs up the shaft.
  2. Motion: Old Way is top hand dominant, "Like throwing a baseball". New Way is bottom hand dominant like swinging a baseball bat.
  3. Turn: Old Way is chest to target and rock back with slight shoulder turn, New Way is front shoulder to target and turn so back faces target.
  4. Hand position: Old Way is hands low, close to body and inside shoulders. New way is hands high, away from body and outside back shoulder.
  5. Step: Old Way is open to target line. New Way is along target line.
  6. Follow through: Old Way is short and abbreviated/punchy. New Way is full and natural.

Additionally I am working with the Canadian National team the week of July 14 and there the protocols are more mental than physical. How does a mental skill differ from a physical one?

Thanks Paul. I think the 6 things I would like for the shooting camp will be fine. In addition for the Canadian team I would like a protocol that says old way is to force ball to goal in less than 30 seconds, new way is to possess ball for 2 minutes, spread defence then go to goal.

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