We all know the FIRST THREE STEPS are critical for getting back into good transition defense. Those first three steps must be a sprint! In most cases, if the first three steps are a sprint, the following steps will follow suit and players will be in a good position to stop the ball.
But how do you get players sprinting on those first three steps every time?
Solution 1 (this is NOT a good long term solution in my opinion).
During game and scrimmages, the coach can yell SPRINT each time the ball transitions to the other team. This works but you want players to remember on their own.
I did this for our last practice (with our 5th grade girls) and it certainly worked. But I don’t want to continue doing this!
Solutions 2 (I hope this is a better solution)
At our next practice I will try adding some new rules to our scrimmages so players start remembering on their own…
Rule: When the ball transitions to the other team, your first three steps must be a sprint. If not, you lose 1 point.
I will try this and start deducting points from their score each time I see a player breaking the rule. I’ll also be sure to let them know when they lose points.
If that doesn’t work, I might try something else. But my preference is to utilize competitive games with “modified rules” to get the results that we want. That is generally my favorite way to solve problems.
In any case, I plan to experiment to see what works on Friday. I’ll let you know how it goes.
If you have tried anything similar with success, please let me know.
9/21/15 UPDATE: It worked. I tried the new rule on Friday and it was extremely effective. Players were consistently sprinting back on defense. Very simple and efficient way to get the results I was looking for.