Carry around a frisbee while you walk from class to class or while sitting and watching TV and just mess around with it.
There is a principle I want to start with here that transcends the position on the field that you’re making your cut (downfield, handler, whatever). This is probably the most important cutting principle anyone can learn: take what the defense is giving you. If my defender playing off me 5 yards to contain the line cut, I’m not going to cut up line. If my defender is backing me by 10 yards because of my 40 inch vertical, I’m not going to go deep (initially). It’s a fairly simple concept, but I see so many young players learn one method of cutting (5 hard steps out and under) and make that cut no matter how the defense is set up. If they’re going to play off of you as a defender, then take the open cut, it’s simple.
This post was in response to a fan who had a few questions about handling and marking both on offense and defense.
I’m a combination handler/cutter for I just had a few questions about handling against tight marks and vice versa, marking tough handlers.
I’ve only been handling for a few months, and I’ve found that in the three tournaments I’ve played at I feel like I’m usually just cycling the disc back to an upline handler or dump rather than making throws to cutters. I’ve only turned the disc once across those three tournaments while handling, which I guess is good but most of the throws I have made haven’t been that long of a throw to get turned, if that makes any sense.
Dan Cogan-Drew shares a great drill with us that works on not only defending a cutting, but also on beating the cutter to the disc. The way the drill works is that it’s focused on practicing defender positioning and agility as well as the cutter juking and working on the quickness of their feet/cuts.
Link to the youtube video here: http://youtu.be/G2OUeMZN31A.
There are a few things to keep in mind going from a cutter to a handler:
- As a handler, it’s important to throw leading throws to the cutters. As a cutter, you know what throws you like and what you don’t like – so keep that in the back of your mind as a handler…throw the throws that you would want to see as a cutter.
Pivoting is a very workman-like skill that is rarely noticed but is invaluable in allowing a thrower to create enough space to throw. Pivots should be smooth and well directed: generally a pivot is employed once a potential receiver has been identified, otherwise thrashing around making aimless and inefficient pivots may leave a thrower out of position at the crucial moment. Having identified a receiver, throwers should try to establish eye contact with them before pivoting, so that they continue the cut and anticipate a pass rather than aborting their cut because they think they have not been spotted.