How to deal with different levels of skill in one team

How to deal with different levels of skill in one team

I have an U10 team playing in Div 1, we are doing well coming 2nd in the comp. The problem i have is I have 8,9 and 10 year olds in the team as we are a small club. I am looking for Drills to cater all age groups and the girls abilities/skills. There are girls who play beyond their ages, and then girls who cannot catch or throw a ball, (basically 6 of the 9 players cannot do both). They have improved, but i find the skilled players are getting frustrated as there are alot of turnovers due to basic errors, bad passes, stepping, offside etc....any advice would be appreciated.Thanks

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TOP ANSWER
Lee-annes NetballCoach, Australia

i had the same problem with my U11 team this year. i have 4 girls who i suggested trying out for reps next year, 6 players who had basically never played before. the whole team need to work together to help the struggling players to improve their skills in order for them to function better as a team. try not to just do catching and throwing. make sure you have movement skills that you can instantly correct technique, and give those girls that you want to extend, you can push that little bit harder. i tend to have the girls in 2 lines facing each other on each sideline of the court, and myself offset in the middle with the ball. one player runs, to catch the pass from me, pivots and passes to the player from where he came from, and then runs to the opposite side of the court, and then the ball gets passed back to me. then the opposite side breaks and then the drill continues. you can pass high balls, or passes well out in front, or easy passes, or whatever pass you want. thats one of my favourite drills for my team as i can control the speed, the pass to them, and give instant correction on technique.

ANSWERS
Lee-annes NetballCoach, Australia

i had the same problem with my U11 team this year. i have 4 girls who i suggested trying out for reps next year, 6 players who had basically never played before. the whole team need to work together to help the struggling players to improve their skills in order for them to function better as a team. try not to just do catching and throwing. make sure you have movement skills that you can instantly correct technique, and give those girls that you want to extend, you can push that little bit harder. i tend to have the girls in 2 lines facing each other on each sideline of the court, and myself offset in the middle with the ball. one player runs, to catch the pass from me, pivots and passes to the player from where he came from, and then runs to the opposite side of the court, and then the ball gets passed back to me. then the opposite side breaks and then the drill continues. you can pass high balls, or passes well out in front, or easy passes, or whatever pass you want. thats one of my favourite drills for my team as i can control the speed, the pass to them, and give instant correction on technique.

Janet Coach, Australia

There are many basic drills on Sportplan which you could use for all skill levels. I would suggest sticking to simple small group activities that all can manage and build on those as they improve. Large group drills are more likely to fail which is not at all what you want. Small successes and positive reward are what reinforces learning. Fun large group games e.g. tag chasey, freeze, simon says all encourage movement/balance and therefore skill development without the "training drill" pressure.

The more able players could partner with less able and take some responsibility for training goals. It is also important that the more skilled players adjust passing during games to cater to the less skilled for whole team success - not much point in throwing hard passes to where they think someone should be running if it results in errors. There is no quick fix for your situation and coaching is a continual work in progress so be positive and reward any small improvements.

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