Field Hockey is one of the world’s most exciting sports and is played by millions of people across the globe. It is fast-paced and requires a lot of skill no matter what level you watch or play.
One of the most recognisable skills in the game is called a Drag Flick, a method of shooting the ball into the goal during a penalty corner (a bit like a penalty kick in soccer). Our resident hockey playing Physio, Tom, is here to tell you all about it and give you a few tips on preventing injury:
This method of scoring a goal involves picking the ball up on the end of the stick, dragging it forward a few meters while sliding the ball up and down the face of the stick, then finally flicking the ball at the goal.
When performed effectively, the ball is fired at the goal with tremendous accuracy and at speeds of over 100kph by top-level players.
There are a lot of component parts to the drag flick skill, meaning not only does it take a long time to master but also means that the risk of injury is high if your body is not prepared effectively.
A lot of younger players when attempting to develop the skill believe that all the power comes from your arms, as they are what normally provide the power for passing and hitting. However, most of the power for a drag flick comes from trunk and core rotation and legs. It is important that players and coaches are aware of this when learning and teaching this skill to minimise the risk of injury and to achieve the maximum out of their training of this skill.
Key areas of training to focus on would be:
Grip and wrist strength
Leg power– forward and side lunges, squats, sprint speed
Core– Internal and External Obliques especially
Upper body/trunk– Lats and shoulders
Click here for a link to a site that has some useful suggestions for exercises and videos or conversely, for info on how to book in with our resident Hockey expert, Tom, follow the link below: