Friday, January 20, 2012

Practice - Passing

Back to passing practice from last Saturday, January 14. 

I put a lot of emphasis on the receiver but of course there are passers, too.   I don't shoot the passers so much because that's too easy.  They're always standing in one place, same motion. Easy photography.  But not very interesting.

It is more interesting to focus on the receiver, the moving target.  To time the shot as the receiver runs under the ball.  Trying to trip the shutter at just the right moment, to capture the ball and the receiver's concentration as she wills it into her hands.

So passers don't get much attention during practice.  Unless they do something really really really remarkable.

Like run down the field and catch the pass she has just thrown.  Makes me wish I were shooting video rather than still shots. 

There were a lot of balls in the air Saturday. I'm only posting a couple photos of the passer - the one above and this one.  I include this shot because it shows the normal relationship between passer and receiver. 

Normally they're two different people. 

It always looks easy but it takes lots and lots of practice to get good at throwing a ball to the precise point where your receiver can catch it. 

Most of my photos today are the end of the play, where the receiver is meeting the ball.  Most are successful.  Most were receptions.  And I'm not telling which ones weren't.   I like happy endings and so all of my photo stories here will have presumptive happy endings. 

Okay, the last one doesn't have a ball in the photo.  Every now and then I miss.  Most misses you don't see because I keep them to myself.  I posted this because I love the anticipation, the concentration.  You just know the ball is there, just outside the frame.  And you just know it will be caught.  No way she's letting it get away.

In the last post we talked a little about running and how little I like running.  The passing drill involves lots of running.  Receivers have to run their routes.  Over and over and over.  And have to concentrate on catching that ball.  Practice.  Practice.  Practice. 

This is January.  The first game is when?  In April or May?  Practice is three times each week.  There are something like nine weeks between now and the first game.  Twenty-seven practice sessions.  Making it on the Outlaws is hard work.  I've watched the ladies come out week after week and dedicate themselves to improving skills, learning plays, building strength. 

I can't help but admire them.

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