Attacking skills

Theme: Receiving

 Lesson 1

The rule that states you can only handle the ball for three seconds means that you only have a very short space of time in which you have to catch the ball, control it, and make sure you send it safely on its way. This is known as decision making and therefore you only have a short period of time (3 seconds) to make a decision in a particular passing situation.

It is important that you can catch the ball consistently as it is the first step in handling a netball, so it is appropriate that this is the first step to practise in becoming a netballer.

When receiving the ball netball players should let their fingers do the work. The fingers drive out to meet the ball, make contact and pull it in quickly.


There are two kinds of catches within the game of netball:

  • Two-handed catch
  • One-handed catch

The two handed catch is the safest and allows for greater control, while the one-handed catch is less safe but gives you greater extension to the ball. In match play, the correct choice of catch is crucial. When your opponent is closely contesting the ball, use both hands to catch. When you are soaring high, unopposed, use one hand.

Two handed catch


  • The body must be well balanced
  • Watch the ball
  • Drive out arms to meet the ball
  • Extend arms to take the catch
  •  Bend elbows slightly


  • With thumbs behind the ball and fingers outstretched, take the catch with the fingers
  • Firmly grip the ball with your fingers

Follow through

  • Pull the ball quickly into the chest
  • Prepare to make your pass

One handed catch


  • The body must be well balanced
  • Watch the ball
  • Extend the arm to meet the ball


  • Fingers are extended fully as they drive out to take the pass
  • The ball is taken into the middle of the hand, with the fingers gripping it tightly.
  • The wrist bends behind the ball to absorb the impact.
  • Balance ball on fingertips

Follow through

  • Quickly pull the ball into the body using the other hand to protect it as you prepare to throw.

Attacking skills – receiving

Warm up before beginning the tasks (netball related, see page)

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Task 1 - Progression 1

  • The skill of receiving is introduced in an unpressurised and static situation. (Isolated practise)
  • Take a ball each
  • Toss the ball up in the air and catch and snatch


Coaching points

  • Snatch the ball into the chest (safe hands)
  • Wrists and hands should move quickly
  • Fingers should strike the ball
  • Eyes on the ball
  • Thumbs should almost touch behind the “catch”
  • Take the ball from the highest point in the air – as the less time the ball is in the air, the ...

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