An advanced defensive skill that sees your defenders working together to create extra pressure and hang time over a goaler’s shot.
– The ‘supported lean’ can be performed by one defender holding either the other’s arm or clothing, in order to allow them to hold their lean for much longer by preventing them from overbalancing and falling forward. Where a goaler might normally wait for a defender to overbalancing before taking the shot, in a supported lean the defender never falls forward, so the pressure is maintained over the shot for well over three seconds.
– The same principles apply as with a normal lean – the aim being to extend the arm up and through the line of the ball, to exert the maximum pressure on the goaler through their shooting motion.
– It’s the role of the the leaning defender to instigate the hold – they may extend their arm back to call for the support, or may call out to their defensive partner to grab the back of their dress. It’s a skill that takes a lot of practise in partnerships so that defenders develop that natural understanding with each tother.
– It’s important to note that the supporting defender still needs to be able to cover the other goaler, and prevent a goaler-to-goaler pass. That’s why the supported lean is often better/easier to use closer to the post, or when the shooting player is on the baseline, as there is less space for the non-shooting goaler to move into. The supporting defender should practise keeping their free arm active, to pressure the pass and look for tips if the goaler does decide to pass off.