Simple handpass drill for hurling

Here’s a simple handpass drill for hurling training.

The handpass is an important skill to learn as it allows players to shuttle the ball to one another from a short distance.

In this drill, divide the team up into three or more stations, with an equal number of players at each station.

In the diagram, the stations are marked A, B and C.

At the start of the drill, Player 1 takes three running steps from Station A toward Station B.

As Player 1 runs, Player 2 leaves Station B and calls to Player 1 for a pass. Player 1 executes a handpass to Player 2.

Player 2 catches the ball as Player 1 runs to the end of the line at Station B.

Player 3 leaves Station C and calls for a pass from Player 2. As this happens, Player 2 takes his running three steps and then executes a handpass to Player 3.

Player 3 catches the ball as Player 2 runs to the end of the line at Station C.

Player 4 leaves Station A and calls for a pass from Player 3. As this happens, Player 3 takes his running three steps and then executes a handpass to Player 4.

Continue this cycle for about five to 10 minutes so that each player gets at least five tries.


  • Once in possession of the sliotar, the player can take only three steps.
  • Players should call to each other by name for the pass as this helps them become familiar with one another.
  • Stress the importance of handpasses over a strike as a tool to move the ball forward a short distance¬† with greater control and less exposure to be picked off.
  • Slowly widen the circle so that players are required to run further and pass farther.
  • Players should not stop to catch the ball or to pass it. The should keep moving.
  • Players should use their hurley in a protective fashion while catching and return to the ready position after the pass.
  • Speed the drill up by adding multiple balls into it.
  • That’s an awesome graphic I created, isn’t it?

Handpass basics:

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Five tips on stopping (that accursed ball)

The more I learn about hurling, the more I feel less sure about giving advice on how to play the game.

The Akron Hurling Club's logo features a blimp and a tire.

Still, I recently got an encouraging letter from an Akron, Ohio, player. He writes: “This is something special you’ve got going there! I have all my buddies on the team here in Akron reading it. The graphics you created as well as the detail provided about the game is phenomenal. I don’t know about other teams but this resource you provide is grand.”

For that pat-on-the-back, I thank him and makes me feel a little less sheepish in offering advice. We’re all learning, I suppose.
Now back to today’s lesson … In the last few practices that I’ve been able to attend, I turned my focus on stopping the ball as it comes to me.

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