Highschool players...want to set records, want to get a great touch on the ball and become so skilled college coaches will be looking for you?
try this offseason ballwork program: It's a secret that only I used, i wouldn't tell friends or anyone because I was jealous that they would become as good as me. Here's my secret.
The bottom line for improving soccer ability is thousands
of quality "touches" on the ball. Dribbling touches, feints, shooting
touches, and control touches. IT ALL BOILS DOWN TO TOUCHES, we can't
learn the game from vids, books or standing in line for the next boring
drill. Add in some speed and stamina work and you get to the next level
In my youth, when I was about 15 years old, I spent hours/days down at
the church soccer field - alone. The church had a big stone wall that I
could serve the ball into and then play the return. I didn't know it at
the time, but it was great training. I learned chest controls, head
touches, thigh traps, volleys, instep shoots and half volleys and
pulled a little bit ahead of the other local players. I ended up
captain of my highschool team, set a scoring record, and lettered a
year in college. I didn't have the coaches to help me with really
advanced skills, fakes, feints and tactics, but even without them, I
got pretty good (I did spend a lot of time up there...)
I would break it down into 2 main areas.
a. Rebound Wall skills
b. Feints and Fakes
2. Speed Work
So my advice would be to find a rebound wall to work with or buy a
rebound net. (A wall is best if you can swing it, and 2 walls with a
corner is phenomonal...or a racquetball court) Be creative with different shots and always play
the rebound with a touch and shot. Try inside, instep and outside foot
shots etc.......... Practice all sorts of traps, controls and
semi-controls. Make feints and then shoot. Hammer the ball for
weeks/months, until you are comfortable shooting, trapping, and
volleying the ball from all sorts of angles and positions, WITH BOTH
FEET. If you love soccer, it is actually fun to smash the ball into the
wall, redirect it, and then whack it again. It's great when your weak
foot is pounding it in just like your strong one.....
Then adopt some fakes and feints that you want to master. Put together
a routine like Mueller's or mine (or some Coerver moves or
Vogelsinger's SoccerAerobics), don't do every skill. At first,
concentrate on ones that you like. Write down the ones you are going to
work on, take the paper outside with you, and do them almost every day
for a few minutes, maybe just before you work out on the wall. It
really should only take about 10 minutes to do some great fast footwork
skills, once you get organized. If it's cold or rainy, you can even do
this in the basement etc. Always try to visualize where you would use
this move on the field and where the defense would be......
Definitely work a few minutes on juggling skills especially foot
touches. Play soccer tennis with a friend, it's also a great teacher.
Finally we need to improve speed. I'd rather have an explosive
speedster with average skills, than a highly skilled "turtle"
But, if you can be skilled AND fast, then we got something!
See if anyone nearby is teaching plyometrics and join in. Otherwise go
the track and work on short sprint repetitions. (The longest dash in
soccer is usually less than 30 yds.) Try a ladder workout.
Dash 10 yds. then walk back.
Dash 25 yds. then walk back.
Dash 50 yds. then walk back.
Dash 100 yds. then walk back.
Now start with the 100 yd. dash and work your way back down the ladder
thru the 50 - 25 and 10. Do more reps as you improve. (I guess you
don't actually need a track for this, just some flat road and good
shoes...don't start any speedwork or plyometrics until you have good
Mix this in with other speed work drills and an occasional long jog.
(Check out the AJAX video on soccer conditioning, they do lots of hops
and bounding and sprinting, it's awesome...........)
) There are also plenty of other plyomentric drills on this website under fitness that I have posted. They include my favorite agility drills.
Yup, in my humble opinion that would be my approach to quickly
improving anyones soccer game. Lots of touches and speed work, and it
all can be done alone. Now when you scrimmage you can experiment with
your new skills and speed to find a little more space and time to