Kids Soccer Drills

Falling Soccer Drills

Kid's Soccer Drills

Of all kids soccer drills, falling is usually the most well-received because it allows athletes to be silly and get dirty. To teach athletes how to fall appropriately, coaches should work in stages. Most kids enjoy diving for balls and will not mind taking a few falls, but it is important to teach them the proper way to fall so they do not injure themselves.

Athletes should start sitting on the ground for these kids soccer drills. At the coach’s command, athletes should fall to the side, landing first with their hips and then with their shoulders, keeping the head steady and protecting it from hitting the ground. Players should practice this several times until they are not scared of the motion of falling. Practicing this several times will also help athletes realize that falling does not have to hurt if done properly.

When players have mastered falling from a sitting position, move them to a kneeling position. This will make the fall take longer and will challenge athletes to maintain proper body position. The proper way to fall from a kneeling position is to let the entire body go at once, with the body immediately following the arms and shoulders.

Finally, athletes should fall from a standing position. The difficulty here is keeping athletes from breaking their position and using their hands to break the fall. Instead, athletes should use the ball to break the fall in this youth soccer drill. If they are diving for a ball, they can push the ball against the ground and roll off it, diffusing the impact and protecting the body.

For new athletes, coaches should consider using protective gear to reassure both athletes and parents. When athletes become comfortable with the movement and realize that all falls do not hurt, coaches can slowly remove the additional protective gear, leaving athletes only protected with the necessary, standard gear.

 

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Soccer Sliding Drills

Along with falling, sliding is a fun move for youth soccer players to learn that comes in handy in defensive situations. The slide tackle can help athletes steal a ball from an opponent and send it to a teammate. To slide, athletes should start from a square position, with their hips in line with the body and the feet directly underneath.

From here, athletes should allow their back knee to fold outward, not directly underneath. This will push the momentum forward instead of backward, allowing athletes to slide around a player and dislodge the ball. The player should tackle with the foot that is furthest from the ball to avoid a penalty or unnecessary roughness.

For sliding kids soccer drills, the hips should touch the ground, with the rest of the body following if necessary, but the point of the slide tackle is to get the ball out as quickly as possible without injuring the opponent or the player himself. To do this, athletes should work to regain their footing as quickly as possible, which is easiest when the body is not all the way on the ground.

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