chapter  62
Beating the Hesitation or “Stutter” Step
Pages 7

In most team ball games the concept of faking, or “selling the dummy”, is an integral part of an offensive strategy. Defensive coaches attempt to teach players how to avoid “buying the dummy” but in the game situation, if the move is well constructed, then the dummy is almost always effective. This report is of an intervention designed to defend against one particular dummy, the hesitation, or as it is often described, the stutter step. It includes some detail of the motor control theory underlying both the hesitation and its defence, and the results of a trial of the intervention in a practice environment. The intervention was developed within the structure of the Rugby Union game and is described as such, but the process is equally relevant in any game in which the hesitation ploy is used.