Lax Coach Mike: If You Must Go 6v6, Add Fun and a Purpose

3. The next variation is to shut off a player. As the ball moves around the outside, the defenders know that they want to lock off a pre-determined talented offensive player from receiving a pass. In the case of much younger players, we might even want to put the red pennie on the offensive player whom we need to keep from touching the ball.

4. A fourth variation to spice up our 6v6 is to go through the repetitions above with a slide that comes very early from a designated slider at any time. Or even a show slide and retreat back to a more normal defense.

5. For an additional variation, allow offensive players to hold the ball for only a five-second count (it is longer than you think). This forces them to pass quickly and is also a great way to integrate off-ball cuts into the scrimmage.

6. Or you might make a rule that the offense needs to stay in the box, or better yet, put out cones to block off one side of the field, and require the offense to be run in the smaller designated area.

You might see enough recognition and experience to change up your slide patterns, for example, from crease slide to adjacent slides, in the middle of a quarter or game, because your defenders, both poles and middies, have been in a fun practice environment learning the variations through the drills.

Perhaps you run two of the variations in each practice for seven to 10 minutes each, quickly rotating players in and out. This allows you to run your 6v6 configuration with different variations for three unique practices. I promise you the players will have more fun and stay more engaged.

I hope you share your thoughts. is a unique site for lacrosse coaches, offering drills and ideas from the greatest coaches in the country. E-mail your comments to

All of the previous articles on coaching and drills from Lax Coach Mike can be found on the Lacrosse Drills, Instruction, and Training page. His eBook is also available.

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