Circuit Training for Netball

Two runners at starting blocks, Seoul Olympics, Close-up of legs
Include short sprints as part of your netball circuit training. (Image: Gary Faber/Photodisc/Getty Images)

Circuit training, a kind of physical workout in which you cycle between different exercises or activities, is a good way to improve general fitness and also work on specific techniques that are useful in a netball game. Circuit training is beneficial in improving anaerobic endurance and sprint agility, both of which are helpful to netball players.

Netball Goals

Use one or two stations for goal practice. Of the seven players on a typical netball team, only two positions -- goal shooter and goal attack -- are allowed to make shots on the goal. However, all players should practice both shooting goals and defending the goal, normally the task of the goalkeeper and goal defense positions. Goal shooters and goal attackers should spend extra time on goal practice, and the others should spend extra time on goal defending.

Running

In a game of netball, it is important to be able to run short distances at a fast speed. Running agility, including changing directions quickly, is also important for maneuvering on the netball court. The International Federation of Netball Associations states that the standard dimensions of a netball court are 50 feet by 100 feet. In circuit training, players can run widths or lengths of the court in order to improve running speed and agility.

Marking

During a game of netball, the team without possession of the ball will typically try to gain possession through "marking" players on the opposing team, so this is an important skill to practice during netball circuit training. This can be practiced in pairs, with one person attempting to get away from her marker so that she could receive a thrown netball. The marker places her body in front of her opponent so that she can intercept the netball if it is thrown to her.

Throwing

Throwing, or passing, the ball is a crucial part of netball game-play. Unlike the closely-related game of basketball, netball rules state that an individual player may not dribble the ball while moving around the court. Instead, he must pass the netball to another player in order to move it up the court. There are three main types of netball pass -- the chest pass, bounce pass and high pass -- and all three should be included in circuit training for netball players.

Combining Drills

Set up all four drill stations on a standard netball court. Both goal areas can be used simultaneously for shooting practice; one third of the court can be used for running court widths; the central third of the court can be used for marking drills; the other third of the court can be used for throwing drills. Have each player spend five minutes at each drill station, progressing, for example, from shooting to marking, then from throwing to running. Shooting and throwing use the player's arms, while running and marking make more use of the legs. Alternating activities which emphasize the arms and legs respectively will help avoid arm or leg fatigue in circuit training.

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