Drill 3.17: WaPolo Volley Ball

An excellent leg conditioner and also fun drill which helps develop passing and receiving accuracy.


  1. Stretch volleyball net or rope about 4 feet above surface of the water across deep end of pool.
  2. Divide players into two teams (not more than 9 men), and practice passing and returning ball as in the game of volleyball, keeping ball dry.
  3. Start play from any position in water with a pass (rather than batting ball from base line as in volleyball).
  4. Continue play as in volleyball keeping score if desired.


  1. Use two balls at the same time, starting them in opposite courts.
  2. Eliminate players when they miss a good pass.

Note: Encourage this game to be played during time other than practice period.


Dribbling in water polo as in basketball aid soccer is a vital skill. When used wisely, it can be a valuable offensive maneuver as well as an effective defensive stratagem. A player must learn the difference between a dribbling and a passing situation. Unwise Use of the dribble will often result in the loss of the ball or the slow down of an alert offensive player's break.

A skilled dribbler must learn to have complete control of the ball while swimming at top speed and at the same time be able to watch the field of play and pass off or shoot quickly and accurately. The drills listed in this category are designed for the practice of the necessary combinations of receiving and dribbling, dribbling and passing and dribbling and shooting with and without pressure from a guard.

Bill's Biography

Bill Anttila
Known nationally as one of the foremost authorities on water polo, Bill Anttila was inducted in the USA Water Polo Hall of Fame on January 17, 2004. He was involved in aquatics from 1947-1984. In 1948, Bill was responsible for the inauguration of the first community college water polo program in Northern California at Stockton College. Before that, Bill began the water polo program at the University of the Pacific in 1947. He coached the Pacific Tigers for 18 years with only one losing season and his 1956 team won the league championship with a 12-2 record. Bill was also the swimming coach at Stockton College, where he won 10 NCC championships and never had a losing season.

During his 38 years of coaching water polo, his teams won 10 Northern California Championships. In 1,099 games, Anttila compiled a 759-340 overall record {.691 winning percentage}. At the time of his retirement, Anttila was the winningest water polo coach in the United States. He had the satisfaction of coaching over 50 All-Americans. He has written a book titled Water Polo Drills and Playing Hints. Anttila was inducted into the Stockton Hall of Fame in 1985. He was then inducted into the University of the Pacific Athletic Hall of Fame in 1989. He is currently retired and resides in Stockton with his wife, Sisko, of 50 years.


The medal pictured above is the last solid gold Olympic medal which was given out at the 1912 Stockholm Olympics in Sweden

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