Korfball drills for attack / score


In short: practise various forms of the shot with a fixed defender.

Organisation: teams of four per basket, one fixed forward and one fixed defender, the other two take turns shooting. After about 1 minute, the players change functions.

All forms of the shot mentioned with the exercises with threes are eligible to be practised in this form of organisation. The purpose of these exercises with the defender present can be to have the shooter perform the exercises at full speed (e.g. when shooting through balls or just the distance shot): not give the opportunity to "aim"), to bring the shooter more in the "game situation" (shooting with a defender right in front of you is very different than calmly laying down for a distance shot), to give the shooter a feeling of the right moment (making an evasive move which is followed by a breakthrough instead of a distance shot is not difficult, it is mainly about the moment that the defender is in the wrong position and the final move must be made), to start away in all directions. Note: the required turn is not the same in all cases, a turn can even be omitted when starting away in the extension of the post. The shot is most difficult when the archer walks straight towards the declarer; in other cases the shooting is easier, but the pure marking more difficult.

Exercise o. is an example of a combination of two standard movements. There are more to come, for example: starting away from the basket, but after receiving the ball take a walk-through ball, or: dodge over right, receive ball, play ball inside again and continue with a dodge ball over left, etc.

Point well!

The exercises a., b. and c. are especially meant to be able to shoot a ball that is not well placed.

To teach at which place a movement should be started (e.g. at a break-through that is broken off very suddenly and is then followed by a shot from very close range or at which place a dodge movement should be started).

Most korfball players do not like shooting drills with defenders present. However, for the reasons mentioned above, I think that shooting under pressure should be done regularly. It is essential that the defenders know what their function in this exercise is: it is about ......(filling in one of the goals mentioned above) and not about making it impossible for the shooter to shoot. It is a breeze for a defender to prevent any shot: he knows what is coming. On the other hand, if an attacker does not do well, the defender should indeed try to block the shot, or not fall into the poorly executed feint.

Course of the exercises:

(using the example of taking evasive balls). The regular attacker stands under the basket with the ball, the two shooters stand about 10 meters in front of the basket, the defender stands near one of them. The attacker with the defender is running towards the basket, forces the defender to run with him, makes a sudden evasive manoeuvre, freeing him from the defender, receives the ball and shoots. The defender tries to obstruct, but is just too late to execute properly. Immediately afterwards, the defender passes to the second attacker, who does the same, etc. After about 1 minute or after, say, five shots both shooters switch functions.

Variation: the two archers stand about 6 metres in front of the basket and about 4 metres from each other. The attacker stands under the basket. The defender must now defend both archers. The attackers may play together a maximum of two times, then one of them must shoot.

In short: practise the standard forms of shooting with three people at the basket.

Organisation: each team has a basket and a ball, the exercises start with one person under the basket (with the ball) and two people in front of the basket. After the shot, the players keep on turning, which means that they have to catch the next ball and pass it to the other players. After passing the ball, another round of shooting follows. If necessary, the exercise can also be done with foursomes, the players just get a few less turns. If necessary, a pylon can be used for each basket.

a ) Passing balls in hand from about 10 metres in front of the basket.

b ) The same, but now overhead.

c ) As a., but the ball is first played forward from under the basket. The shooter places the ball back to the attacker under the basket and immediately runs after it to take the turnover ball.

d ) Shooting from a standstill from a distance of approx. 8 metres (also after the shot, run to the basket to catch the next ball).

e ) Shooting after a movement to the left or right from a distance of approx. 7 metres.

f ) Take evasive action on the left (start at the pylon at about 10 meter before the basket, at 5 or 6 meter before the basket make a sharp left hook).

g ) As f, now over the right.

h ) Take penalty shots.

i ) As d., but after the distance shot the shooter takes another walkthrough ball.

j ) The shooter threatens with a through ball, but stops very abruptly at about 3 metres before the basket (hoping that the defender "shoots through"), gets the ball and finishes the chance.

k ) The shooter makes an evasive move (over the left or right), gets the ball, but instead of shooting, takes a walkthrough. There are several ways to put the ball inside: with the "outside hand" - i.e. in a dodging movement to the right with a right-handed stretching throw -, with a bounce, by an overhand or an underhanded pendulum throw, or by catching the ball on the other hand with a left-handed stretching throw. There are several factors that determine which method is best, a good korfball player will have to master several ways.

l ) The shooter makes an evasive move, pretends to receive the ball (the attacker may make a feint), but takes a through ball immediately afterwards (so like c., but without the ball).

m ) The shooter takes a through ball, after a few meters he suddenly moves away. However, the evasive movement is not continued: there is that through ball anyway. I call it the Lucas move, after Albert Lucas who had a lot of success with it.

n ) Numbers 1 and 2 under the basket, number 3 (who has the ball) in front of it. Number 1 starts away from the basket, receives the ball, makes a half turn and shoots (= starting away from the basket). Number 2 catches, plays on number 1, starts away, receives the ball back, makes a half turn and shoots. Number 3 takes off etc.

o ) The shooter makes an evasive move on the right, receives the ball, places it back to the attacker under the post, and walks straight to the basket (so in the direction he just came from). He receives the ball back and shoots.


In short: basic exercise with pairs to learn or improve the distance shot.

Organisation: each pair a basket and a ball. There is one person in charge, after some time (or after a goal) the tasks are changed.

a ) The shooter walks calmly at some distance in front of the basket. After receiving the ball, the shooter turns towards the basket and shoots. Pay attention to the technique of the shot.

b ) As in a., but now the players walk in front of the basket, with their upper body directed towards the basket: thus with cross passes.

c ) As b., but now at higher speed. In this way, the players will automatically 'hang' more on the outside leg. In my opinion, it makes no sense to shoot 'dry', without using the basket. If there are not enough baskets, it is possible to use them. Another possibility is to work with threes or with two pairs per basket.

Aim well!

The dodge ball has two major problems: maintaining balance after receiving the ball and not having enough "power" to give the ball enough speed, which makes each shot too short. A very good tool for keeping the balance and therefore for learning the dodge is to make a hink while catching the ball.

With an evasive ball on the right, one or more cross passes are followed by a hop on the left leg. The ball is caught during the hop-up phase. The player then lands on the left leg, after which the right leg is placed (quite far) diagonally backwards. The player bounces back on this right leg, after which the shot is fired, releasing the left leg from the ground. Many beginning korfball players and almost all ladies first connect: they first place the left leg next to the right leg, after which a shot from standing comes from two legs.

In the following tutorial, a through ball was chosen with a hop while catching the ball.

Experience has shown that the hop is a very good aid in learning the technique. It is not the intention that korfball players who have a good through ball should have to learn to through ball without a hop. The hop is only an aid, not a goal in itself. Exercise a and b are only meant to find out what is the preferred leg of each player when moving.

It will turn out that almost everyone uses the same leg for a high jump with one leg. When shooting a through ball, the ball is dropped with the preferred leg. The trainer can also find out what everyone's preferred leg is.

d ) The players now make a 'real' dodge ball (over the right side): they walk from about 7 metres in front of the basket a few metres in the direction of the basket, make a dodge movement to the right, walk with cross passes to the right, receive the ball and shoot.

e ) As d., but at higher speed.

f ) The distances are increased individually (do not force!).

g ) As d, but now with a double evasive move: a number of korfball players appear to be 'not defending' with their evasive move. A closer look at the video footage shows that almost all of them make not one, but two clear evasive movements. The first evasive movement is the one described above, at a few metres distance in front of the basket. The second evasive move is made at the moment they receive the ball: they walk past the basket (with their defender still close by), but while catching the ball, they evade the defender by placing their 'outer leg' far backwards, after which they immediately make a shot. This movement, which takes only a few tenths of seconds, is indefensible. However, it takes a lot of strength (and coordination).

Inshort: basic exercise with pairs to learn or improve the distance shot.

Organisation: each pair a basket and a ball. There is one person in charge, after some time (or after a goal) the tasks are changed.

a ) Shooting overhead from about 3 metres (5 metres for older children and adults). Pay extensive attention to the technique of the shot. See for example the book

e ) a. See also the video tape SCOREN and the corresponding workbook from the VIEKOR project.

b ) Same, but now: who has 3 goals first?

c ) Distances are increased individually (don't force it!).

d ) Shooting from 3 metres next to or behind the basket.

e ) The shooter comes in from about 8 metres in front of the basket. He receives the ball at about 3 or 4 metres, stops immediately and shoots.

f ) The shooter walks to and fro a few metres in front of the basket. After receiving the ball, the player shoots immediately.

g ) As f. but with more speed.

h ) As g. but now with a defender near the shooter. This defender interferes (by being present and sticking out his arms) but allows the shooter to shoot.

In brief: some defensive tactics in the 1-1 game

Organisation: 3-3 or 4-4. One side constantly attacks from a 4-0 organisation to 3-1 or 2-1-1 for some time. The defending side is instructed to neutralise its direct opponent in one of the following ways

1 ) The triangle. The defender positions herself so that she can see both the opponent and the ball at a glance The defender can also form the triangle in such a way (by moving out of line) that she is more or less inviting her opponent to pass to one side Of course, this will not work, as the defender is particularly wary of doing so

2) Standing wide, with both legs close together in front of the attacker and ready to run in all directions at any time If the attacker actually starts to pass, the defender will not give her a free route to the basket, but will try to let her 'run around' as much as possible without blocking. The defender turns with her, but stays in a straight line towards the basket for as long as possible and puts out her 'outer hand' to defend. The 'real defenders', the sticklers, choose the latter method, as opposed to the former, which is favoured by slower defenders. Both methods can be equally successful. Other tactics

3 ) The defenders limit themselves to defending the "real chances" and allow distance shots from more than 7 meters. A tactic that can be excellently combined with the so called "back defending".

4 ) The defenders know the preferred moves of their personal opponents and try not to allow those moves. The opponent is forced to do things she is not used to doing, becomes insecure and therefore less pure.

5 ) The defenders make feints: they threaten to step in, but don't do it at the last moment. Here, too, the aim is to make the attacker hesitate.

In short: man-to-man defence exercise at the basket.

Organisation: three players with a ball near the basket. Number 1 is attacker, number 2 defender and number 3 passes and catches. After 30 to 45 seconds, the position is changed. The exercise can also be done in teams of 4; this requires less stamina.

a ) Number 1 attacks as well as she can, supported by number 3 who marks and passes. Number 2 defends her, but does so in such a way that she never misses a pass. Will the defender succeed in not giving up a goal? Jan de Jager in defensive position during a training match for the Dutch team.

b ) As a., but now the defender is also not allowed to allow any shot from a distance smaller than 6 meters. By this extension the task of the defender becomes considerably more difficult.

c ) Number 1 attacks again as best as she can, but now the defender in any case does not allow any shot from distance.

d ) The normal 1-1 game. The defenders now defend in the way they think will result in the fewest goals against. Which of the trio will score the fewest goals in 45 seconds?


As an alternative to the sequence a. to d. you can also choose the following sequence: a. the attacker may only move in the depth line (in the direction of the basket), Exercise c. is for the most b. the attacker is only allowed to move in the broad line (at the same distance from the basket), but they must now move with the ball, which makes the risk of a walkthrough d. d'. the 1-1 duel. However, the purpose of this exercise is e. Switching between opponents. Playing against a different opponent to give the defenders the feeling that they can and cannot go along with this exercise often means a huge change.

f ) The attacker attacks as usual, but the defender must now try to intercept. This can be done by working with the arms (holding them high or to the side), by standing somewhat differently (as it were, with one eye on the attacker and the other on the declarer), or even by defending completely with one's back to the attacker. The latter is a bit too risky, though...

g ) As d., but now the defender may also choose to intercept.


In short: exercise with the emphasis on turning away from the opponent.

Organisation: Each team has a ball and an area of about 20 by 20 metres. The players are numbered.

a ) Number 1 is attacking, number 2 is defending and numbers 3, 4 and 5 are playing together with the attacker. Everybody can move freely through the area. The attacker always gets the ball back from numbers 3, 4 and 5. The defender's task is to intercept the ball. Can the attacker manage not to lose the ball a single time? The ball may not fall on the ground either! After about 30 seconds the players change tasks: number 3 attacks, number 4 defends, etc. until everyone has been attacker and defender once.

b ) As a., but give the instruction that the attacker should always turn away from her defender: that way she can both pass and receive the ball back easily. I call this: 'cutting and turning', others call it 'keeping your opponent on your back'.

c ) As a., but now the team-mates 3, 4 and 5 stand still in a triangle with a distance of about 15 metres. This makes it more difficult for the attacker.

d ) It becomes even more difficult if the attacker is instructed to pass the ball to the other players in a fixed order. She now has to run in circles, so that the defender knows exactly where the ball will go, or where the attacker wants to run to. Many balls will now be intercepted, or at least touched.

e ) Again part c. Show that the attacker has an easier time of it now because of the freedom of choice By turning away from her opponent, she creates a sea of space for herself!

Inshort: a ball game, in which pure throwing is very important.

Organisation: In a rectangle of approx. 20 metres length and 10 metres width, two teams of about 6 players are lined up. A centre line divides the field in two. At both back sides is a strip of 1 to 2 metres wide. The players of side A stand in section A, while one player from A stands in lane A. The players of side B stand, except for one player, in section B. The players must try to hit the players of the other side with the ball. They are not allowed to leave their section. Furthermore the players are not allowed to run with the ball in their hands. Fending with the hands is allowed. If a player is hit, he goes to the back of the court and plays with the ball. Will one of the players succeed in clearing the other team's box? Make sure the hunters do not start throwing hard. If this is likely to cause problems, decide that the throw can only be made via a bounce. Make sure they do not start throwing very hard. If this threatens to cause problems, determine that only a bumping throw may be made.


1 ) If a player can catch a ball from the opposing team, the player who threw is off.

2 ) Exchange referee: if a player from the back lane hits the ball, he may return to his own section.

3 ) The strips at the back are extended with side strips, so that the compartments are completely enclosed.


In short: practising fast starting and high jumping in duels for the ball.

Organisation: Each team of three (about the same size) a ball and a piece of the hall or the field.

Jump ball or referee throw. The numbers 2 and 3 stand close together at a few metres from number 1. The numbers 2 and 3 must try to get it first. Who wins the duel the most? After two substitutions.

Numbers 2 and 3 stand right next to each other at about 7 metres in front of number 1. Numbers 2 and 3 sprint towards it and try to catch the ball before it falls to the ground. After, for example, 8 changes, the second change is made after another 8 changes.

Number 1 stands between numbers 2 and 3. He rolls the ball a bit away. As soon as the ball has left the hands, numbers 2 and 3 may start. Who will get the ball first? Number 1 may also make feint throws. Physical contact will occur during these exercises. This is officially forbidden, but everyone knows that it happens and that a lot of it is allowed or not noticed by the referees. It is therefore sensible to practise starting and jumping with an opponent around who will touch you lightly or give you a push now and then (whether intentionally or not). Experience has also taught me that some players who actually lose all duels during matches (or even avoid them), can play much 'harder' after doing this exercise one or more times if they have to. And sometimes even like to do so... Enough about this, it seems to me that this is not the place to point out how opponents can be trumped by physical violence.

As above, but now the trio are standing at about 10 metres from a line. Who is first to catch the ball rolled away by number 1 before it rolls over the line, number 2 or number 3? Note: it is not allowed to 'slip' over the line. If for instance number 2 manages to keep the ball in by holding it back for a moment, but does not come to a stop before the line, then there is still a nice possibility for number 3, who fell behind, to grab the ball first!

The numbers 2 and 3 stand close together at a few metres distance from number 1. Who will get the ball first?

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