Drill 6.3: Fast Break from Circle

To learn to break from a revolving circle formation on signal from the goalie.


  1. Form 1/2 court circle, with players swimming counter-clockwise and guards pressing.
  2. Goalie keeps feeding ball to player swimming toward him from left side; player receiving ball in turn immediately passes back to goalie and continues swimming circle pattern (permit men to cross circle if circle clogs up).
  3. This procedure is repeated several times, until goalie sees an opportunity for a man in circle to break toward corner and receive a clear pass. Goalie yells "break", everyone, except pass receiver, sprints down pool and 01 passes to open (free) player.
  4. Continue play until shot at goal is taken or ball lost to defensive X team.
  5. Start circle pattern at other end of pool and repeat drill going in the opposite direction.

Drill 6.4: Half CourtPass and Break

To practice quick starts and change to defensive situation on fumbled ball, shot or referee's whistle.


  1. Place all players in one-half of pool practicing dry passes.
  2. After 6 successful passes, any player is eligible to shoot at goal.
  3. On shot (or on fumbled pass before a shot) all players must immediately break to other half of pool area.
  4. On shot, after goalie gets the ball, he passes back to shooter who dribbles or passes to most alert breaking player who is in best position to continue advance for shot at other goal.
  5. On any fumbled ball, goalie must break and retrieve ball, then pass to a player in other half of pool.
  6. Goalie then returns to cage, passing begins in other half of pool and drill is repeated.

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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