Hockey drag flick – technique

The drag flick is particularly useful in two circumstances in field hockey. Firstly, to score in a penalty corner when there is foot movement stepping into it (penalty corner drag flick). Secondly, when your team is awarded a penalty strike from the penalty spot and it’s a one on one between attacker and goalie.

. I’ve looked at a lot of technique-videos for drag flicking and this clip (click on this link to view Drag flick)  is one of the best for penalty corner drag flicks. This one is really quite good too and walks it through in slow motion…

And for the real drag flick hockey anorak I’ve just stumbled on this academic analysis of the move. Only for the serious minded player with time on their hands I think! Drag flick video analysis paper

And being the hockey anorak that I am, I spent a while slowing this other short clip of Ashleigh Jackson (link below) doing a superb penalty strike. Ashleigh Jackson penalty flick

Was interested to note that for this penalty strike, which obviously doesn’t have a run up, he starts feet apart – ball, I think, in line with his left foot. He doesn’t start with his stick touching the ball, rather there’s a slight lift of his stick backwards before he drags the ball forwards – and scores!

I gather the rules on this Ashleigh Jackson penalty strike are that the taker has to be within touching distance of the ball and must start behind the ball. One umpire stands near the goal the other near the taker. The taker must then push or flick at goal – not hit or drag the ball. No dummy shots or faking are allowed and no playing the ball and running in for a rebound after you have hit it.

Tips (I’ll keep adding to this – so please help me by adding your comments).

For a penalty corner strike…

  • Whatever your feet movement is as you approach the ball – do the same every time, so you know where you are going to end up. 
  • Keep ball on the hook of the stick for as long as possible.
  • Don’t hit the ball instead – you shouldn’t hear a hitting sound with the stick, just a smooth movement with constant contact with the ball.
  • No backswing
  • Good flickers practise on one knee – up to 100 times
  • Here’s another ‘how to’ piece from isport that’s worth a read. How to drag flick
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