Drill 4.5: Dribble Tag

To make a fun game out of dribbling while teaching all players to keep their eyes on the ball.


  1. Place all squad members in pool; designate one or two players as "it" and give them a ball(s).
  2. "It" players attempt to dribble and catch X players off guard by quickly changing direction and sprinting toward them.
  3. "It" players "tag" by picking up ball (after taking at least a three stroke dribble) and hitting any X player who then becomes "it".

Note: This drill can be dangerous if shots thrown are exceptionally hard. Ball can be softened if this is a problem.


Spinning is usually thought of as a basic defensive maneuver to fake a guard or to avoid being tackled, but it is also used as an offensive tool to enable the player to delay the action or to allow a teammate to get into position to receive a pass. It is necessary to practice spinning all of the possible 360 degree turns with and without pressing guards. Spinning is a trick which develops a player's self-confidence since it allows him to protect and keep possession of the ball under pressure and at the same time enable him to make accurate passes and shots.

It is usually best to practice this technique along with other fundamental skills. Therefore, most of the drills listed include dribbling and passing as well.

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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