Nowadays, dragflick has become a fundamental weapon for any team in the world. Just by watching any statistics we can realize the key role of this technique to change a match score.
Almost every player, at some point of their career tries to learn this skill, which is a really hard one. Even many try to learn on their own, since there are not too many experts on this subject. The result is usually not accurate enough, with far too many technique mistakes that are later really hard to modify.
This post objective is to give a basic introduction into dragflicking, for players or coaches trying to help their players.
As usual, we want to say that this is just one way of understanding the technique, and there are probably many others also correct!
This post will focus since the moment the stick touches the ball until it is released. In the future, in another post, we will also study the run and the footwork.
To make it easier to understand, we have split the technique into 4 phases, although all of these occur in less than 2 seconds.
Phase 1: The Drag
When we first pick up the ball, it should be behind our right foot. The first phase will only consist on dragging the ball forward in a straight line.
When we get the ball, our left hand should be behind our body line, so that our stick is straight for the ball to got straight forward.
Phase 2: Ball in
At this point, the ball starts rolling into the stick. In order to achieve this, we have to push forward with our right hand, leaving the left a bit behind, so that our stick ends up diagonally. With this stick angle, the ball will get into the stick on its own.
A key point for this phase is to get both out hand low, close to the ground. If we don’t do this, we might miss the ball underneath our stick while its coming inside.
Phase 3: Ball out
We will now do the opposite movemente: The left hand will push forward and the right hand will be left a bit behind. The stick will be diagonally again, but on the opposite direction.
The ball will now naturally start rolling to the outside of the stick, getting closer to the end, in order to prepare the release.
Too many times players don’t do this stage properly, causing only to be able to shoot to their left. In order to be able to go right, it’s a must pushing out the left hand!
Phase 4: The Whip
We call “The Whip” to the sudden aggressive movement where we release the ball. This movement should be as explosive as possible, since this is the main (but not the only) source of power for the shot. The whip is not only carried out with our hands, but also with our hip rotation.
A common mistake is to stop the body and raising the stick trying to force the ball going high. The whip should be as long as possible, trying to move out body forward, ending with our chest almost touching our left knee.
It is key to keep the ball always on a straight line. That’s why we need to move the stick but not the ball throughout the technique. Sometimes we might move the ball diagonally to avoid the defender, but this should be done on purpose, not always.