What you need to know about the field hockey goalkeeper?

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Electing to go without a Field Hockey Goalkeeper.

According to the latest rulebook, field hockey teams can now have 11 players active on the field without having a field hockey goalkeeper. When a team decides to play without a true goalkeeper no player will be allowed to wear goal keeper equipment and can only play the ball with the stick.

Development of a Field Hockey Goalkeeper.

Like all the other players, a goalkeeper has specific needs too. They must be given as much attention as the other players of the team. If they need to be developed as the backbone of the team, they should all receive the requisite training and the information required to tackle the forwards of the opponent teams.

A field hockey goalkeeper needs to be flexible and tactful. Their reflexes should be sharp and quick. A reflex is not just a spur of the moment knee jerk reaction. A reflex has to be built after strenuous practice till its almost first nature to the goalie.

The goalkeeper needs to practice many drills in order to achieve their target of saving the goals. The coach will usually set up various drills as the ability of the goalkeeper progresses to face more challenging tasks.

What you need to know about the field hockey goalkeeper?

Many former players become coaches themselves. This helps the goalkeeper understand the player point of view too. Goalkeepers have to face the forwards, who are usually going for the goal at top speed. At these speeds any person can become disjointed and lose their head.

Playing the ball.

The field hockey goalkeeper needs to fix their eyes on the ball and set their position in motion. If the keeper has to hit the ball with his feet or stick, then he should follow the ball through and take a comfortable balanced stand on both his legs.

When the goalkeeper kicks the ball, it should be lead by the chest, as this will allow for controlled movement of the kick. As your techniques improve, use more power without letting the ball rise too much.

After every shot, there are potential rebound opportunities for the ball. Be careful of this and keep the eye on the ball to save from a potential goal on the rebound. The most important thing for the goalie is to keep the ball out of the goal. It’s important to be balanced in your stance. For this have equal weight on both your toes with your chest forward and gloves up.

Developing your own Field Hockey Goalie style.

Goalies need to make quick decisions to use their feet, pads, sticks or their bodies as shields. Goalies can use their whole body to save the ball. However, if done too often can actually be quite detrimental. Even with pads, you put your body in harm’s way and the constant shots can take a grind on your body.

Goalies need to fully understand and practice both dribbling and diving to save the goals. They should also be able to move laterally across the goal and save the goals too. Excessive dropping to the ground can be a cause for worry. The goalkeepers need to be excellent with their sticks also and be able to shoot right back at the forwards.

A field hockey goalkeeper needs to evolve their own personal technique through various drills that have to be practiced. They also need to know the field positions and have excellent communication with the players for working both the defensive and the aggressive techniques.