Netball is a team game and each member must have certain individual skills and assets. If you want to be a part of a winning team, you need to put in some work, making sure that you have enhanced your skills by practicing techniques as well as cooperating with your coach in understanding and developing team tactics.
A vital netball skill is in being able to pass the ball. This can be practiced by throwing the ball between yourself and your teammates. Just being able to pass does not win games. You also have to practice dodging the blocking techniques of an opposing player and be able to develop a connection with other players so that you have a good anticipatory idea of where you will pass it. This skill can win games and should be the main focus of your passing practice sessions. The best development of these techniques is the fake pass that fools your opponents but not your teammates.
Other important techniques to develop are preventing an interception by your opponents and developing skills in interception. One incisive interception almost always leads to a scoring opportunity because it puts the opposing team on the wrong foot. One way of practicing for offensive as well as defensive interceptions is to have two players on one side of a line and another a little further back on the other side. The latter is the interceptor who will try to get the ball while the others move around passing it.
Offensive Team Tactics
One method for developing an attacking strategy is to place cones around the goal circle at intervals of about one yard. One team member practices moving around the cones in a figure eight and is shortly joined by another player doing the same thing. A ball is introduced and the two players throw it between them in a variety of ways, such as chest and bounce passes. Introduce a defender and the attackers must keep their movement and passes as well as avoid the defender. Take the cones away and rotate the players.
Defensive Team Tactics
As a coach, you must consider the relative merits of zonal or one-on-one marking. In a zonal system, each player marks a space on the court and is responsible for defending it against any oncoming player. This is good for interception but may mean relinquishing more possessions to opponents. With one-to-one marking, your team will have a tighter defense but less flexibility for counter-attacking play.
Kate Coen has been writing professionally since 1996. She has written for "The Guardian," "Time" magazine, "SIX Magazine," Reuters, Bloomberg and other media. Coen holds a Bachelor of Arts in modern languages (French and Spanish) from Oxford University.