Name of player: Tara Johnson (self-analysis)
Identify the important skills and techniques needed for a participant in her position: Netball centres need a wide range of skills and techniques in order to carry out there position responsibility efficiently and accurately. One thing centres vitally need is good cardiovascular fitness. They need this as centres are constantly running up and down the court throughout an entire match as they both defend and attack in each of the court segments. They are also dodging a lot and therefore in order to continue with a lot of movement for quite a long period of time they need to get oxygen to muscles quickly and continuously for a whole match meaning they need a good level of cardiovascular fitness. Muscular endurance is not something which is as vital as cardiovascular fitness but it is quite useful as centre is a position which receives the ball quite a lot and therefore has to pass a lot as well. Passing requires decent arm muscles in order to pass the ball around the court quickly and often with quite a lot of force. At a good standard netball is a fast pace game and so to ensure the match is played at a good standard a fair amount of skill is required from all of the players but especially the centre position. Centre position requires all six aspects of motor fitness. To begin with, they need good static balance. This is key to centres playing in a fast pace match as they need to make sure they keep themselves steady in order to not commit the footwork offence and lose possession of the ball to the opposition. Also, after receiving a long ball, inaccurate ball or intercepting a ball you need to make sure you have good balance so as soon as you’ve thrown the ball you can get back into the game play. Coordination is also a good skill for a centre player to have as the need to be able to control there eyes, limbs as well as the ball if they are in possession. They need all these to make accurate passes and to ensure they do not break any of the rules of the game. Although it is not a skill of its own, centres do need awareness which partly comes under coordination. They need to be aware so they know where the ball is going, which team is in possession, where there is space on court and where the other players are. Good reaction time is a good skill to have when playing at a higher standard of netball as you often need to pass the ball very quickly if a team member is in a good open space before the opposition can come to intercept. Good reaction time is also needed during toss ups, when the ball has been dropped or when intercepting as if you don't react fast enough you could loose the ball possession to the opposition giving them an advantage. Agility is one skill which is crucial to a centre position as well as the rest of the team. Agility is needed in order to dodge opposition players and get into space in order to receive a good ball. It is also needed so they can change direction quickly if the ball gets intercepted so they can quickly switch roles and begin to defend rather than attack and visa versa. Power is a basic necessity for a centre as passing either a long or fast ball requires this. For example, if your team players can not dodge around the opposition you need to send it over head, especially around the shooting circle, this requires accurate power. Finally, speed is essential to a centre player. Without speed a centre would find it difficult to get into good space and become free meaning interception would become easy to the opposition player. With good speed it is easy to get into space away from the defending centre. Speed is also essential for a centre as they often need to get from one end of the court to the other very quickly if an interception takes place. Speed mixed with agility is a lot of what netball is about as getting free and receiving a clean ball to get it down the court quickly is the aim of the game....
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