December 02 , 2006

First of all I would like to thank those who have sent in questions or comments. Now, this week I want to chat a bit about the ready position (starting position / gorilla position / fully loaded position) whatever you may call it I don't believe there is enough emphasis put on this most basic but important technique.

The ready position, for the keeper, gets all of the body parts where they should be and allows the quickest and most economical movement to the ball.It is the position the keeper should always take when opponents are within striking distance of the goal. If you ready position is good and balanced it allows you to move or react to a shot. With a proper starting position and good positioning in goal you will be better able to get to most balls.


The proper ready position begins with the feet shoulder width apart, weight up on the balls of your feet (keepers should always move on the balls of their feet). Heals should be raised and toes should be pointing toward the ball. Make sure the feet are even and not one in front of the other. Knees should be bent a bit so that you'll be ready to move in any direction. The waist should be flexed to ensure that your body weight is forward, the shoulders should be in front of the feet. The arms should be bent with the hands in front of the body. Head should be relaxed and you must move your body so that you are facing the play with your eyes on the ball.

Some of the common problems I see include: Standing flat footed with knees too straight; Upper body too straight; Arms hanging at the sides or hands in too close to the body; Feet too close or too far apart.

All sounds pretty simple right? The problem is that because it is so basic most keepers don't pay enough attention to the importance of the ready position. When most keepers are asked to get into the ready position they do it quite naturally. I think the breaking down of this technique can be attributed to one major fact and that would be laziness, it is easier to stand straight and flat footed and wait for the ball to be hit at you. I believe, in training, coaches must insist that the keeper use a proper ready position every time they are facing the possibility of a shot. Once, as a keeper, you instinctively get into a ready position your job will become simpler. You will find that under pressure your stance will give you a better chance at getting to the ball especially after recovering from an initial save and going for the rebound.


That's it for now, keep the comments and questions coming. Until next week's chat.


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Last Updated December02, 2006