Prior to our opening game against Switzerland at the European Championships we spoke with Eric Walser of the Swiss Team. We expressed an interest in running a clinic for his players during the championships, Eric was very happy to accept our offer and the practice was penciled in for our rest day later in the week.
The day duly arrived and myself, Coach Collier, Captains Dan Green, Tom Williamson, & Mark Reynolds, along with Face off specialist Al Wallace, Goalie Ben McAlister, 'D-Man' Dave Cottam, paparazzi Nick Anderton, and Team Manager Ravi Sitlani, all stepped out with the Swiss Squad onto the practice field.
Dynamic warm up with Al Wallace
The Clinic started with a dynamic warm up, followed by footwork, body position and strategy 'behind the goal' for defenceman, and the fundamentals of passing, catching and shooting technique for the short sticks. The Goalies and Face Off guys also spent extensive time working on their technique.
Coach E and Tom Williamson look at positional strategy behind the goal.
We then went into drill work to see how much the players had taken on board. We finished the session with a 'Team Talk' where demanded a win in the next game- The Swiss boys duly obliged with a rousing victory over the French.
Michael Haller (83) shows great footwork & balance and a good cushion in this 1 on 1.
We had scheduled the clinic to run for 1 and a half hours but after 3 hours of fun filled informative tuition, we had to prize ourselves away to go and scout opposition we were due to play later in the competition!
We thoroughly enjoyed our morning working with the Swiss team, and were pleasantly suprised by how much was picked up in the session. It was great to pass on our knowledge and see how enthusiastic the Swiss players were to learn.
All smiles after the defensive clinic
Coach C talks shooting technique with the Swiss short sticks.
Danny Green explains 'Box to Box' passing.
The Face Off guys being put through their paces.
Coach E demands a win against France.
Even the locals stop by to pick up some pointers!
** Over the coming months National Squad coaches will be running a series of clinics covering the fundamentals of the game, mainly at university venues throughout the England. A page outlining the content of the clinics will appear on the ELA website shortly.