How To Master the Grid Drill: A Lesson With Matt Dunn


This article appears in the July/August edition of US Lacrosse Magazine, a digital-only publication available exclusively to US Lacrosse members. Join or renew today for access to this 96-page edition, which includes immersive and interactive features as well as video tips from professional players. Thank you for your support!

Virtual training is all the rage these days. Whether through Zoom, YouTube or Instagram, the resources to connect players and coaches despite their physical separation have surged. US Lacrosse even established a digital emporium, Lax at Home, loaded with drills, at-home workouts, stick-skill exercises, e-learning and development opportunities to keep members active and connected during the pandemic. 

For more than a decade, US Lacrosse Magazine has provided the platform for some of the sport’s top players to share tricks of the trade. We went next level for this digital-only edition. Seven elite professional and U.S. national team players put on a clinic for our cameras at US Lacrosse’s Tierney Field in Sparks, Md. These next several pages are chock full of tips and drills for youth and high school players, including embedded videos. 

We are here to help you get ready to get back on the field. For more ways to train on your own, visit Next up in our digital-edition how-to series is Matt Dunn.

Matt Dunn
Maryland '16 / PLL Whipsnakes / NLL Georgia Swarm / 2019 U.S. Indoor Team

The Grid

1. Set Up Five Cones

Place one in the middle and four in each direction.

2. Approach / Backpedal

Start at the center cone, approach the top cone, break down and backpedal.

3. Pivot

Plant off your right foot and then drive to the left cone. Backpedal back and repeat.

4. Add Lateral Moves

— Approach the top cone and backpedal back.

— Drop your hips, shuffle to the left cone and back.

— Backpedal to the rear cone and return the center cone with a forward approach.

— Open your hips, shuffle to the right cone and back.

— Finish with a forward approach at the top cone.

Approach Progression

1. Approach and hold your defensive posture.

2. Approach, get into your defensive posture and backpedal.

3. Approach, backpedal and crossover step.

Focal points for defensive posture:

1. Break down with your feet hip-width apart.

2. Keep your weight on the balls of your feet.

3. Chest out and chin up.

4. Stick out in front to maintain gap.

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