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Field Hockey Tips for the Fan

Like any sport, field hockey is confusing to watch if you have never played it yourself. Here are a few things you can do to learn more about the game.

1. Read about the game. Here are a few sites you should visit to learn more about the game:
SportSpectator Fan's Guide to Field Hockey: Our 10-minute guide to the game.
Wikipedia: Good wiki community write-up on the sport.
USA Field Hockey Basic Rules: A basic guide by the national governing body of field hockey.

2. Watch a game with a player (current or former). At a tournament, there is plenty of time to watch games with coaches or players. Watch a competitor's game while you have a break. Also, at high school games, there are usually multiple levels (frosh/soph, junior varsity, varsity) that play on the same day. Come early or stay late and watch the game with someone who can answer your questions.

3. Watch a televised game. Watching a game with professional commentators will help you pick up the lingo. Olympic games only occer every four years, but you may be able to find a tape of archived matches. Additionally, the men's and women's national championship games are televised on CSTV (College Sports TV) each year. Here are two other resources:
Field Hockey TV has archived games. For some good free coverage, click on the "On Demand" tab and then enter "BDO" into the search field. The coverage is international, but is a good opportunity to see some play with commentary.
USA Field Hockey videos. Skills from the Top videos ($30). Skip the first few options; they are geared specifically toward player skills and are very expensive. However, the Skills from the Top videos are only $30 for a year of access and provide good clips of basic skills as well as live game coverage.

4. Ask questions. If you have a question, don't be afraid to ask someone. Good resources are coaches or players. You can ask them in person, or contact us and we'll try to help you out.