A Game of Tag: Redodging Using a Childhood Classic
I’ve always looked for analogies to help explain my coaching points and give context to movement. Some of the best coaches that I’ve played for have blown me away with their unique and creative analogies and I’ve tried to emulate that.
When I first started teaching, I made immediate sport-to-sport connections. I’ve found that wide receiver footwork and basketball hesitation moves translate particularly well to lacrosse – neither of which is a surprise given my background in both sports. The crossover is real and easily explained to players with similar backgrounds, “This is what you need to do – just like a point guard in basketball!”
Except there’s one problem.
As I’ve coached more and more players, I’ve discovered that not every kid has played basketball as the concept of sport specialization continues to grow. Fewer and fewer women’s players have grown up playing different sports as well, so it’s not a gender-specific issue.
So, where can we make the connection? Where does it click? Well, we need to go back even further, to a simpler game and a simpler time. We have to play “tag”.
Redodging is, essentially, a game of tag. I step away from the defender, they lunge to get to my hands. How do we avoid the defender? How can we throw an opponent off his or her line and avoid the outstretched hand or stick? How can we bait them to commit to one lane of travel, and then sprint by them on a different one?
How can I manipulate my speed to avoid the tag? Just like I manipulate my speed on a “Bounce”.
How can I manipulate my body to step one way, and sprint the other? It’s exactly like a Step Back Redodge.
How can I turn my shoulders around to make it look like I’m taking off towards the swing set, only to run to the sport court? It’s just like a Rocker Step or a Grandma Move.
These simple analogies help to conceptualize our Redodge Series. Redodges are a MUST for players looking to play at the next level and beyond. Controlling your pace, and how it affects the on-ball defender and the slide, are CRUCIAL if you want to play high-level offense.
The men’s and women’s games are evolving. Not every player we coach plays basketball or football. We can see it on film, but how do we get these moves to click? Thinking back to our earliest childhood game can help players of all levels form a simple foundation for redodging.