How to Coach Individual D - Crosschecking Change

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How to Coach Individual D - Crosschecking Change

New postby GPSays on Mon Feb 18, 2013 6:42 pm

Had lunch with an experienced lacrosse referee and he said everyone is being instructed not to tolerate crosschecks and crosscheck holds any more.

See here in U.S. Lacrosse Rules Q&A: ... tabid=6209

I come at this from a U11 coaching point of view.

I grew up in an era where cross-checking wasn't allowed and hence have never really coached it. Not very prevalent in our rec league. In this Summer's travel tournament play, however, cross checking was rampant and allowed and is, of course, very effective form of defense. From various coaching clinics, etc., it was clear that teaching kids to push away from the goal or middle of the field was emphasized as a defensive measure.

Anyway, how exactly do I coach kids to play defense individually? I am talking only about short sticks here. My plan wasn't novel. I was going to teach them to get low and play defense with their feet, using a lot of drills where kids played without their stick in their first two weeks. Of course, here they are taught to get low and use their feet and push offensive player away with their hands. With their sticks, I was going to teach them to stay balanced and check the lower hand without lunging, so as to pressure the ballcarrier and disrupt their passing offense. If the ballcarrier attacks and dodges, however, I was going to teach the defender to break down low and move their feet use their gloves to push the ballcarrier away from the goal or middle of the field. Obviously, in this last case, that pushing away often turns into a crosscheck or crosscheck hold in practice.

What should I do differently? Same thing but really emphasize using gloves and not shaft of stick and not extending hands away from body? Or change my approach altogether? I've read all the books etc about extending the stick towards the ballcarrier and keeping the butt end in your holster, but in my experience this just results in younger kids lunging for the check and getting beat badly. Even a simple poke check from this defense posture seems to make a short stick defender easy to dodge.
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Re: How to Coach Individual D - Crosschecking Change

New postby cfllax on Mon Feb 18, 2013 7:30 pm

Simply tell them they have to keep their hands together on the stick. Best way to train is make them play defense with a nubby. I have several 12 in long metal sticks (cut up a d pole and taped the ends) that i use for 1v1 drills. I also took some old sticks with heads and shortened them down to about 2 ft in length so they still have a head for scooping gb's and making a pass.
Get low and use hands on hip to control opponent.
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Re: How to Coach Individual D - Crosschecking Change

New postby BigAl36 on Thu Feb 21, 2013 2:10 pm

teach the "v-hold" and the "forearm hold". its what we used to do before cross-checking was allowed
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Re: How to Coach Individual D - Crosschecking Change

New postby laxcoach1558 on Thu Feb 21, 2013 7:50 pm

Play defense the same way, just don't cross check.
As far as how to do that
Training the ability is hard, but I like to be simple and stepwise:
1. Aim your feet to be quickly in position; 2. Take a balanced approach to the ball; 3. Align your hips in a good athletic position, dictage his direction; 4. Aim your stick to his bottom hand; 5. Back Pedal to diffuse his first move; 6. Contact and control his hips
To take the ball away...
7. Make sure the situation is right (position of field, time of game, match-up); 8. Get him one handed; 9. Beat on his hand to create discomfort. As you do so count his rhythm; 10. Throw a check. 11. Lift his hands to create a scrums; 12. Separate his hips from the ball.
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