with Abbey Sutherland, UW-Stevens Point Head Women's Coach;
Back-to-Back NCAA D-III Final Four appearances;
Back-to-Back Wisconsin Intercollegiate Athletic Conference Coach of the Year (2013-14)
NCAA D-III Final Four coach Abbey Sutherland wants her teams to play with "guts." To reach that goal, she uses many drills that help her players learn how to play - and succeed - under pressure.
In this presentation, Coach Sutherland demonstrates her favorite drills for creating pressure situations in practice. You'll see drills that build mental toughness in passing, serving, digging, attacking and finishing games.
Discover warm-up drills that put pressure on players while developing basic skills. Your players will work on correct form while staying focused mentally to finish the drill. During the demonstrations, Coach Sutherland gives tips on how to talk to and help players who are struggling in pressure situations.
Serving & Passing
Her serving drills will force your players to hit a zone. They'll also enable them to practice serves for ending a set or a match. The Serve to Finish Drill is a great example of how Coach Sutherland uses drills to get players to complete a task as a team. Players must work together to complete the drill with the added pressure of avoiding errors, otherwise they're forced to start over.
This segment showcases finishing drills with an emphasis on conditioning. These drills incorporate ball control, defense and attacking, and will reveal your players' level of conditioning and which players will work hard when tired.
Many of these drills will simulate all of the crazy emotions that players experience during matches. The "5 Kills to Freedom" drill is fast paced and will help you sort our the hard workers from the rest. Your players will work on skills such as passing, blocking, attacking and defense and earn the chance to get out of the drills quicker by working hard.
Competitive drills require great communication amongst your players, which will influence your team's on-court success. The last section of drills includes game action 6-on-6 drills. These drills put pressure on players to finish the game, creating game-like situations they face during real matches.
The "Cups" game is a fun, innovative drill that your players will love to play. It helps highlight which players see where the scoring opportunities are during games. The game stresses fast thinking, communication, and playing through chaos - everything important in pressure filled matches.
Even when tired, it's important for players to keep their minds under control and focus on completing the goal at hand. Using Coach Sutherland's drills in your practices will promote confidence in your players and help them develop a never quit attitude.
Produced at the 2014 AVCA Annual Convention in Oklahoma City, OK.
53 minutes. 2015.