Drill 5.5: Four Square

To learn to control ball over head while spinning in either direction.


  1. Arrange 4 players about 10 feet, apart, forming a square with one ball to each square.
  2. Players pass to each other, receiving ball and immediately spinning before passing.
  3. Men should practice receiving with either hand and spinning right or left.

Note: Emphasize keeping ball overhead for better control.


The younger, faster, better conditioned swimmers of today are responsible for increasing the tempo of the game from the slow, deliberate position type of play, to a fast breaking type of offensive team action. Knowing when to break, when to delay, or when to fake and break, is the sixth sense that every coach hopes to find or to develop in his players.

A player must learn to respond automatically to certain situations that cause a change from offense to defense or vice versa. This calls for alertness and heads up play. More than that, a good performer must anticipate where the ball is going, and be ready to make the next move, thus getting the all important jump on his man.

Situations calling for a break or change in direction should be practiced often if a fast break of offense is desired. Drills are offered to make the player aware of the opportune situations such as:

  1. Intercepted Pass
  2. Fumbled Ball
  3. Goal Attempt
  4. Defensive or offense foul
  5. Field Goal

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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