When it comes to having great soccer technique, you have to work on the right things. Once you know what to work on, continue to do it. There is only so much time to spend with the ball so make it count. Building a culture at home is where you will continue to grow as a player. I’ll show you different ways to players need to love the ball & work with it as much as possible. Many of my trainees are skillin it by only spending 5-10 minutes a day with the ball. These minutes add up and I promise you’ll improve week after week. It’s a culture and a mindset.
Culture bring great soccer technique
Just think about the difference of a player who practices 30 minutes a week at home. Compared to kids who never touch the ball. Even if it’s spending 1 minute with the ball from when you go from your bedroom to the kitchen. I used to leave a ball in the living room and just work on turning or a certain move. Funny thing is I still do this:)
Imagine spending 1 minute with the ball each time you go to the living room… That could be an easy 5 minutes per day. Every day this would total your 30 minutes per week.
10 minutes / x 3 days / week = 1,440 minutes per year
10 Minutes per day only 3 days per week = 2 hours per month [1440 minutes per year]. I believe that when working on the right things time on the ball outweighs touches. Imagine the impact of just doing the right drills for 10 minutes 3 days per week. If you do the most important skills over and over, you’ll set yourself up for more success.
With hard work, you’ll be able to reach your potential. I guarantee you’ll have better skills than your peers.
Great soccer technique under pressure
What do I mean by technique? Being able to pass different ways with both feet. Below is a list of 21 Different Ways to Pass the soccer ball. NOT the corny, over-the-top passes! These are passes you will see in every pro game, but not a youth game. Most youth players only know 3 or 4 different ways. That’s because coaches have too much to teach!
Kids must practice on their own, but if you can hire a private trainer, it will speed up the development process.
21 ways to pass the ball
- Inside of the foot short pass (push pass)
- Bending inside
- Bending outside
- Chipping for backspin
- Chipping for inside spin
- Chip no spin
- Chip with outside spin
- Inside of laces to pass or shoot a ball square from where you are facing, or even a ball that goes further back than a square ball.
- Volley pass inside of foot
- Challenging volley pass outside of laces
- Volley pass laces
- Volley pass outside of foot bend
- Overhead volley pass, while facing your mate or own goalie and passing the ball over your head to a mate behind you. (Like a bicycle but you stay on your feet instead of a half backflip)
- Heel pass
- Chop pass
- Flick pass
- Header pass (has several ways alone)
- Chest pass
- Thigh pass – used by forwards to 1 touch a very short pass to a teammate making a run at them. So the player could leave the ball and turn or spin out for the teammate to take the ball over.
- Bottom of the foot passes, which can be in any direction. Often is a takeover where the player with the ball steps on it and rolls it back to a mate.
Great soccer technique kids need to practice
[besides the 21 Different Ways Above]
- Inside of the foot short passing
- Kicking with laces left and right – so many high-level high school players are not sound with either leg. They can kick the ball hard but not with backspin, trust me.
- Full Volley with laces; both feet
- Half Volley with laces
- Volley with inside; both feet
- Chest Volley
- Thigh Volley
- Being comfortable and sound at trapping bouncing balls coming into your knees, hips, chest or face. What are you going to do with each one? You have to practice and get used to all of them.
- Turning while dribbling
- Turning while receiving – 1st Touch with your chest, foot, thigh
Teaching muscle memory to strike with laces
One of the best ways to improve striking with the laces is actually not even kicking the ball. Instead teaching your muscle memory the right way. There are many different things to take into account. Where you plant your non-kicking foot, knee bent, not turing your knee in, kicking foot connecting the right way, correct arm out & more.
Watch this quick video I made in my living room to show some of these things to work on.
Age Chart Skills Focus
4-5 Fun Games and Scrimmages for self-teach. They will slowly watch and learn. Introduce 2 passing/scoring options which should be inside push pass & laces. They will have one style that is better so be patient, no need for correction yet. If you want to do reps in the yard or park by letting them practice each 10 times or more, but just don’t correct them in games or scrimmage.
6-7 Introduce how to pass with the inside of the foot as well as the laces, but only expect 95% to be good at 1. Also practicing lots of dribbling skills/ball control.
8-9 Dribbling skills/ball control as well as focusing on trapping with both feet & short passing both feet, Striking with laces strong foot. Focus on getting really sharp at these skills before moving on.
10-13 Is the age they start to become better with controlling balls out of the air. Volley drills, trapping balls out of the air with different parts of the foot, chest traps and other drills. Striking with the laces should be a top focus at this age. Staying sharp on the Dribbling Skills/ball control.
14-17 Precision Passing both feet, Turning while receiving, chipping, striking with laces, bending balls, crossing, finishing and pressure situations so they can solve problems in tight spaces.
18-22 Crossing, finishing balls out of the air or bouncing, precision passing change of direction high rep situations as well as all of this with fitness tied into it so that they can perform these skills when tired [Game like].
The soccer mindset you need
It’s important that the players try and want to become perfect at these skills at the right times. There is so much to work on and learn. Before jumping to the next “skill level”, make sure you get sharp with the fundamentals. Passing short 5 yard and 15 yard balls. These are the passes you will play the most! Also receiving balls on the ground is fundamentals. Spend time on the more challenging skills like dealing with [controlling] ball out of the air. When it’s easy, then make it harder, faster, higher. You have to get out of your comfort zone to keep improving.
Working hard only helps when you work on the right things. There are too many young players who want to work hard and improve, but working on the wrong things. Spending an hour on your own practicing free kick or corny YouTube tricks is not going to help you. Spend quality time working on the right things.
You have what it takes to have great soccer technique and it doesn’t take thousands of touches. Make sure you believe in yourself and please know your can reach out to me for help.