A half volley is something you want to know and practice. There will be situations where it’s your only option. Bouncing balls are not easy to deal with, therefore knowing how to pass and shoot these different ways will help you have more success on the pitch. Below you’ll learn the difference from a full and half volley and how to improve the right way.
“Practice striking the ball as it’s coming up from the bounce.”
The half volley explained
There are several different types of volleys… [Full, half, side, bending]
The half volley is where you kick the ball while it’s in the air, BUT just after it hits the ground.
Therefore, you hit the volley while it’s coming up, instead of down.
So, the ball is about 6 inches off the ground when you kick it.
3 parts of the foot to use:
- Top of the laces
- Outside laces
- Inside of the foot
Timing and patience are the two things you need in terms of letting the ball barely bounce before contacting the ball.
Best ways to improve
If you don’t have a trainer or partner to toss balls, find a wall or rebounder to get high repetition…
2 good rebound nets to practice volleys:
- rebounder like this [high reps more for the volley pass due to the angle, but can also use for passing on the ground] I really like this one!
- 6×12 flat face – less expensive one [probably can shoot harder due to the flat angle]
The reason a wall/rebound net is better than a goal is because you can get more reps since the ball will come back to you.
Using a goal is usually more fun for players because you’re scoring a goal:)
If you’re going to practice using a goal then have 10+ soccer balls so you get plenty of reps.
Try to find a goal with a high fence or net behind it to save you time from retrieving balls shot over the goal…
The importance of repetition
Whether it’s soccer, basketball or playing a musical instrument – you need reps to improve faster.
It’s important to know it takes time to become consistent.
Example with shooting:
Out of 10 shots, if you have 2-3 really good ones you should be happy… At least while you’re first learning.
Most youth players can’t hit 1 good one…
Your goal should be to get 10/10, but you have to know that’s almost impossible.
Once you can hit 90% clean, continue, but add more challenging elements… Further out, on the run, while fatigued, weak foot etc.
“The more you practice the better you get.”
Different ways to practice and use the half volley
- Striking on goal using your laces
- Bending with the outside of the foot
- Inside of the foot passing back where the ball came from
- Side half volley to redirect
“Try to be perfect at the simple things.”
When you’ll use this technique
Whether you’re a defender or an attacking player you’ll need to hit a half volley at times.
2 main times you’ll use it:
- Shooting on goal
- Clearing the ball or passing long
“Players who can adapt and deal with different types of balls coming at them will be technically better.”
Truth is most players never learn this
I would bet that 95% of club soccer players don’t know how to do a half volley…
Living here in Dallas, TX [arguably the best youth soccer city in America] I get to work with players from some of the biggest clubs.
Almost every player I first work with looks unsure when I say “let’s do half volley’s.
I’m shocked when they even know what it is…
Hopefully with this blog article we can help change that and get more coaches, parents and players practicing these.
Learn, practice and then continue doing these drills – no matter how great you become.
You want to stay sharp.
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