hide menuhide menu CA Logo hide menuhide menu

CA Logo

AC Coaching Topics

AC Coaching Topics (Intermediate and Advanced)

These notes are to help AC coaches put together coaching sessions by picking from the ready-made groupings of topics.

2-4 topics can be covered in a 2-hour session, though some are 2 hours in themselves.

Intermediate Topics

Suitable for handicaps 12 and below (or those aspiring and nearly there).

Break Hygiene - Keep it Going

  • Rush lines
  • Multiple pioneers
  • Move pivot around
  • Ask yourself "where do I want to play the next croquet stroke from?"
  • Rush after a hoop
  • Get near enough
  • Stand up on hoop approaches

Hampered Shots

  • Laws - Faults
  • Options - decide and commit, don't panic!
  • Hammer shot - don't even try it!
  • Up to 1" through the hoop - normal swing
  • Through the hoop with 'roll hold'
  • Sweep - make sure it's legal (no push, hand not resting on ground)

Pioneer Rushed to Non-Ideal Position

  • In the jaws (review the laws) - options
  • Behind the hoop
  • Long way away

Basic Hoop Running

  • Laws - starting to run, completed; hoop-and-roquet
  • Stalk, relax, aim and hit!
  • Where to aim - between the extremes
  • Don't attempt the unlikely (if I run this angled hoop gently enough then I'll still get my rush)

Tricky Hoop

  • Laws
  • Options - decide and commit, don't panic!
  • Remember the basics
  • Jumps, slam - other 'trick shots' not recommended

Break Building - Get it Started

  • Styles: aggressive or precision
  • Use strokes such as thick take off, angled stop shot at boundary
  • Think about cannons
  • Plan picking up balls from corners
  • 3-ball break - shallow pioneers
  • Defensive options - next break
  • Invest a bisque
  • Shooting at doubles
  • When to shoot
  • Hit-in after opponent blobbed 1 (Irish peel opponent to 2)


  • It's all about getting the first break
  • Analysis technique - applies to all options
  • Level-play options - standard openings
  • Giving bisques options
  • Receiving bisques options


  • Objectives
  • When to start thinking about it
  • Ball exchange - make last hoop off opponent
  • Emergency
  • Peg-out
  • With bisques still standing
  • Some standard leaves and how to get them - including 3rd turn hit or ball round
  • Defensive leaves - survive the lift, next break
  • Setting up wirings - and what to avoid

Back to Basics!

Perfecting the Croquet Stroke - Know Your Ratios

  • Straight
  • Split
  • Pull and drag
  • Hoop approaches

Know Thyself

  • Know your critical roqueting distance - practice
  • Psychology - don't get despondent as the out player - the winning mindset
  • Choosing your shot - make a rational decision and then hang the consequences, clear your mind
  • Shooting - stalk, smooth swing, keep your head down


  • Laws - placing the balls (and moving them)
  • Standard
  • Wafer
  • Worm
  • Promotion
  • Open

3-Ball Ending

  • Options for 1-ball player
  • Options for 2-ball player
  • Use bisques to avoid big splits

Practice Routines

  • Roquet - practice success and then increase the distance
  • Croquet stroke ratios: drive, stop, roll, half-roll, full-roll, pass-roll
  • Getting behind yard-line balls from yard-line position
  • Rushing - use 3 balls, play a break keeping one ball near the peg, rushing to it after each hoop
  • Roll to 1 from w boundary
  • Roll to 1 from I
  • Take off to 1 from behind
  • Split from 1 to 2 & 3
  • Play a break, when it goes wrong stop and think "where did it first start to go wrong?", rewind and repeat until shot is done correctly twice in a row
  • Practice cannon from I(1), II(2) and IV(1)
  • 2-ball break - how far can you get?
  • Practice getting your chosen 'standard' leave
  • Hoop approach & run cycle
  • Approach 2 from II

Bisques and How to Deal with Them

  • Know your opponent's strengths and weaknesses
  • Don't underestimate your opponent (treat them with respect!)

Giving Lots of Bisques

  • Be defensive or really aggressive if you have the skill

Giving a Few Bisques

  • Play as if level
  • Don't take risks
  • Think about break construction

Receiving Lots of Bisques

  • Shouldn't happen for long - just set up a break and win!
  • Leave options

Receiving a Few Bisques

  • Often the most difficult situation
  • Use bisques to get an easy break

Being an A-Class Player

  • Aim: Error free play
  • Mindset
  • A ball in II is a pioneer - lower risk break attempt
  • Make it easy - get near to things
  • Estimate probabilities, make a decision, and go for it
  • Guarding a shot
  • When to shoot

Introduction to Advanced & Super-Advanced Play

  • Laws
  • Openings
  • Leaves

Advanced Class: Opening and Leaves


  • Standard
  • Duffer
  • Corner 2
  • Super shot
  • Hitting on 2nd turn
  • Hitting on 3rd turn - go round/dream leave


  • When to start thinking about it
  • Diagonal Spread
  • NSL
  • OSL

Advanced Class: Peeling

Peeling Basics

  • Peeling and problems
  • Plan escape (ball)
  • Straight peel issues
  • Straight Rover peel
  • Straight double peel
  • Penultimate before 4-back

"Perfecting" the Triple

  • Standard Triple
  • Delayed Triple from missed lift

Dave Kibble - February 2019