Hockey Goalkeeping: How to teach the basic stance?

In this article we will see a fundamental topic for the goalkeeper position at the beginning of teaching: What is the correct posture of the body and how important is it to focus on this?

Let’s think about this within the context of teams of young players (under 10, 12 or 14). Many times, and due to lack of time in the week, coaches do not have the opportunity to dedicate enough time to the goalkeeper. Unfortunately, it is the way it is. We take it into account and incorporate them into the exercises, but there is not always the possibility of dedicating a specific training session to them.

Unfortunately, that is not going to help the development of that boy or girl who decides to put their body in a position that is essential and extremely important for hockey. Sometimes it also happens because the coaches lack information since it is a position that has very specific technical movements and gestures.

In any case, we have to find a way to transmit some technical information, even if it is something basic, that will help and contribute with the development of the goalie.

Not everyone knows what the basic teaching posture is and that is why we are going to analyze it in the following images.

Goalkeepers should be in a slightly low position, with their knees bent and their body weight balanced, but not on their heels. Generally an goalie puts his weight on the metatarsal as it will allow him to take off and react.

In this photo we can see the difference in the position of the body, where we see the one on the left with his waist bent and his weight very much forward. On the right instead, we see an GK with a good posture, well balanced.

Additionally, the hands should be up, raised with the elbows bent. If the shot is a high shot and our hands are down, the movement of the arms in order to cover that shot, will be very difficult to do.

In the following image we can see a clear difference between the position of the hands between two goalies. If the shot is strong, the reaction time is less, that is why the importance of the hands up before the shots is taken.

However, in a one-on-one situation, the hands position will surely be different but surely if there is a straight shot on target, this is the position that most goalkeepers use internationally. Here we can see some examples:

If Spanish is your native language, you can find this same article in a translated version.

By Pablo Mendoza

Pablo Mendoza is an FIH Hockey Academy Educator and the owner of A Hockey World. Contact: