Ball Wall and using the area

Note: This is a worksheet for a Hurling Ball Wall Workshop

The Hurling/Football wall is an excellent piece of infrastructure to assist clubs and mentors in essentially having the ability to train year round. Traditionally, the Hurling Wall has been used as a Drill heavy area where many repetitive exercises are done. There are lots of resources on Youtube and online where there is drill after drill of Ball Wall activities. I would ask that you utilise the Wall and the adjoining space differently, to engage the players mind, to challenge him or her in different areas of their game in a more holistic development, as opposed to isolated skill development. Here, I will outline how to mix in the traditional drills with more game based exercises that will develop a more rounded player.

I will use two distinct formats, the traditional “Off the Wall (OTW)” and a more games based “In the Area (ITA)”. I will move between both and show how the drill we used OTW can be then brought into a Games Based environment ITA.

  1. Handpassing
    • OTW: In groups of 3, the players line up 5m from the wall, one behind the other. Player 1 handpasses the ball off the wall and player 2 collects the ball, handpasses it off the wall and then player 3 collects and the group repeats.
    • ITA: Piggy in the middle, players keep the ball off the designated Piggy by handpassing only.
  2. Striking for a Catch
    • OTW: In groups of 3, same format as above but 10m from wall. Player 1 strikes the ball so that it bounces before the wall and then bounces up for player 2 to catch and repeat for player 3.
    • ITA: Piggy in the middle, players keep the ball off the designated piggy by Bounce passing (ball is struck into the ground before bouncing up to partners hand).
  3. Long Strike and collect
    • OTW: In groups of 3 with same format as above but 20m from wall. Player 1 strikes the ball low against the wall and runs into the ball to collect with first touch or catch if above knee. Handpass to player 2 who repeats.
    • ITA: Piggy in the middle, players keep the ball off the designated piggy by striking low and hard to partner, who is more than at least 10m away.
  4. High Catch
    • OTW: In groups of 3, player 1 throws the ball high against the wall, player 2 runs in and catches overhead. Player 2 then repeats for Player 3 and they repeat.
    • OTW: Same activity but this time the last player 3 will put on token pressure on player 2 while he is trying to catch the ball.
    • ITA: Player 1 hits the ball up between Players 2 and 3 who compete trying to win the high ball. The player who loses then becomes the passer and continue this.
  5. Side Step and Feint
    • OTW: In groups of 3 as above, player 1 starts on the 10m line. He passes the ball to player 2, standing on the 20m line, who must try to get past player 1 before striking the ball at the wall and collecting. He then passes to player 3. Player 2 is now the defender and player 3 is the attacker. Keep repeating. (Once the player in possession passes the 10m line, he wins, and the defender stops pressuring)
    • ITA: One player goes in goal and he hits the ball out between Player 2 & 3. Whichever player wins it must solo the ball past the 20m line before turning to try to go past his man and score a goal. Continue for 90 seconds, then rotate the goalkeeper.
  6. Jab Lift:
    • ITA: In groups of two. All the balls scattered around the area, player 1 is the designated picker whilst player 2 is the designated defender. Player 1 must try to jab lift as many balls in the 30 seconds as possible, whilst player 2 tries to stop him. Swap roles and repeat 2 times.
  7. Hooking:
    • OTW: In pairs, Player 1 runs out and jabs lifts a ball and tries to strike at the goals. Player two tries to hook. Player 1 continues running for 2 more balls and repeat. When this is done, players return to the start and swap roles.
  8. Games:
    • ITA: 3 vs 3 possession game. Whichever team has the ball after 1 min is the winner. Repeat vs different teams.
    • ITA: 2 vs 2 with 1 goalkeeper. Keeper pucks out the ball, whichever team wins the ball, they must try to score a goal after completing 2 passes. Whichever player scores goes in goals for the next possession and repeat. Players can only score by “Flicking” the ball into the goals
    • ITA: Criss Cross, make 4 teams with 2 pitches criss-crossing each other. Play for 3 minutes and whichever teams win, play each other and the losing teams play each other.
    • OTW: Players in one or two groups, depending on size of group. Each player starts with 3 lives. Player 1 hits the ball against the wall at a target (goal/between cones etc), next player has one touch, then a strike to do the same. If you miss, you lose a life. Last man standing is the winner.
    • OTW: Cross bar challenge as a fun game to finish up.

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