Essentials Pivots and the Limits of Marking by Brummie

Despite the efforts of even the best defender, there is no mark capable of stopping all throws to half of the field.

By pivoting in all directions – not just backwards and forwards in a single plane – a thrower is able to release the disc from many points. Increasing the number of release points means a marker needs to deny many more options to throw.

Pivoting and faking the around throw - which the defender shifts over to prevent - creates a huge inside lane. By pivoting forwards, the thrower generates an uncontested throwing lane

Let’s look at an example; Fig. 1 shows a typical scenario with a thrower and a cutter on the break side of the field. The shaded area shows the parts of the field that the marker is trying to deny. If the thrower pivots directly backwards – Fig. 2 – in an attempt to throw directly to the sideline area, then the marker is forced to shift their position in order to deny that throw.

Fig. 1: B cuts on the break side

Fig. 2: D1 moves to cover the swing option

With the marker out of position (Fig. 3), another cutter moves into the space where the marker should be (Fig. 4); this is an example of The Undefended Channel.

Fig. 3: D1 has moved which reduces their coverage downfield

Fig. 4: With D1 out of position, another player – C – is able to take advantage

The pivoting action taken is critical to the success of offence. Correct pivoting action will move the marker and enable your offence to generate flow. It is important that you ensure you actively fake – using your arms – as well as pivoting, as good markers won’t move unless they believe you’re going to throw the disc.

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