Coaching Association of Canada

Barb Bautista - Ringette

A Good Defence is the Best Offence

In ringette, both offence and defence are important. However as a coach, I believe that defence can be under-emphasized at times. Being a great defence in ringette isn’t just about defensive coverage in the triangle. The purpose of defence is to prevent anything and everything from getting remotely close to the net and to be able to set-up and assist the offensive attack.

I have a simple rule -- when the other team has the ring, our entire team is playing defence. Here are some reasons why defensive play should be emphasized and be a priority for ringette coaches at every practice.

Help your athletes focus on what they want to have happen. You can’t always control how many shots go in, but you can emphasize the value and importance of the intensity, effort, and execution of your team’s defence.

Consistency. Defence will keep you in games where you are having trouble scoring.

Great defence leads to offensive opportunities. One of the best ways to score in ringette is on transition. What leads to fast breaks? Good defensive play and turnovers. Playing great defence will lead to more offence.

How can coaches train athletes on their defensive play?

Teach the fundamentals. Defensive teaching includes teaching the mechanics of defensive skills and developing your athlete’s ability to apply the skills to game situations.

Learn to play without the ring. It’s learning to play your angles, to position yourself on the inside of the ice, to be able to put or move the attack where you want it to go, to play outnumbered and to support the goalie.

Here are some additional points to help forwards and defence improve their skills, get scored against less, and end up with the ring more often!

  1. Angle the opponent
  2. Maintain good position (goal side and ring side)
  3. Know who is on the ice

Click the image to dowload the drill.