Netball Australia lists the official netball court dimensions as 15.25m X 30.5m (or 50ft X 100ft).

Now, whether you have been playing netball for quite some time or you have just started playing the sport, there are a few key reasons why you should play in a full-sized court.

When you are playing netball, it is crucial that you get to your assigned zone or area in the court. This helps prevent overlapping with your teammates and facilitates perfect execution of your team’s game plan. This systematic approach to playing netball is called positional play.

And if you want to improve your positional play, it is imperative that you play in a full-sized netball court, even during practice. This is particularly true for defensive plays.

From a defensive standpoint, there are four key skills that you can develop playing full court: close marking, ball interception, reducing passing options, and anticipation.

Close marking

One of the key defensive skills netball players should develop is close marking. Close marking can be defined as marking an opposing player as closely as possible without committing a foul.

Close marking can be further broken down into a few other skills. These include limiting passing options for the opposition, forcing errors, and creating opportunities from errors made by the competition. Close marking may also include restricting the space and movement of the attacking team.

Ball interception

The goal of ball interception is to read the opposing team’s offensive plan, regaining possession, and then launching an offensive attack.

In order to successfully intercept the ball from the opposing team, you and your teammates should learn how to properly position yourselves on the court and avoid clustering with each other.

Reduction of passing options

Close marking forces the opposing team to make long passes instead of short passes. Now, as the gap between the players of the opposing team widens, the chance of intercepting passes increases.

Practising in a full court allows your team to judge ball speed and distance better.

Anticipation

In a closely contested match, your team cannot afford to wait and react to the opposition’s play. Quite simply, you will need to anticipate the other team’s next movement.

During practice in a full court, you and your teammates should practise switching positions and defensive assignments in a seamless manner. This will allow you to get into the best position without hampering your teammate’s movement.

Playing in a full-sized court has a few other benefits as well. For one, you can move more as an individual player. Second, you get to become more familiar with your team’s style of play while you develop your own offensive and defensive style.

Learn more about Melbourne Social Netball and our facilities (at the Riverside Golf and Tennis Centre, Flagstaff Gardens, Melbourne High School, Richmond Recreation Centre, and Ryan’s Reserve) by visiting our website.

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