One-on-one Ground Ball

1-on-1 Ground Ball Drill with Pressure

This is a simple game situation ground ball drill we like using in practice all the time. It’s great for teaching beginning players how to pick up loose balls with a Defender in pursuit, and also for teaching beginning Defenders how to avoid the dreaded “loose-ball push” in the back.

Ground balls win games. Every lacrosse coach knows that. Loose balls turn into extra scoring chances. They attract extra players and change everybody’s position on the field. Teach your players to look up to pass the ball to open teammates right away!

The great part about this drill is that it starts by simulating a bad pass, which happens all the time in games. Teach your players how to "roll away from pressure" with a Defender coming from behind them, keeping their stick protected.

For your Attackers in this drill, focus on: running to pick up the loose ball under pressure, running to space to get their hands free to pass or shoot, and getting their eyes up to see the field and see where their teammates are.

For your Defenders, focus on: pressuring the Attacker picking up the loose ball without giving up correct body position in between the ball and the goal.


1 on 1 ground ball drill with pressure basic setup

Figure 1. Start your players in two lines, one line of Attackers and one line of Defenders. The first Attacker in line will turn around and face the coach, with the first Defender in between them, guarding the Attacker.

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  • Give your players fast reps and fast action. Each rep should be 5-10 seconds at most to keep your players moving.
  • Make sure all your players practice picking up the ground ball with two hands and with both sides.
  • Make sure all your players get to play both Offense and Defense in this drill to develop well-rounded athletes.
  • Try keeping time and keeping score to add some competitiveness to your practice games and drills!


  • For faster action and more reps, split your players into small groups of three (3) and run this same drill in different locations around the field.
  • College Ground Ball Drills: Try these simple ground ball drills the college guys use to develop muscle memory and give your players some extra conditioning work.
  • The Good Ol’ 2-on-1 Man/Ball Drill: This classic lacrosse practice drill teaches your players to work together to win loose balls.
  • 2-on-2 Ground Ball w/Pressure: Run this same drill with 2 Attackers and 2 Defenders for an extra challenge.
  • 4-on-3 Ground Ball/Fast Break Drill: Use this basic drill to imitate multiple game situations at the same time!

Try it out and let us know how it goes with your players!