Many drills are orientated towards the full team practice style of work. There are many individual drills that often get overlooked and there value is not appreciated. Let’s look back at a player’s beginning when they first started. Most players remember getting that first soccer ball, it was that free one with the giant advertisement covering it, or it was the best color available at the sports store. Then they set up in the back yard making memories with individual drills as they scored against the fence time and time again.
Players who are looking to get extra work and refresh or build new skills can do so individually. Another words we don’t need a group or pair to get some good work in and develop those good skills. The best part about individual skills is that opportunity to work and learn at each ones individual pace. Group drills often get people overlooked or gear towards a skill level that not all the kids possess. Individual drills will stay in alignment with what each kid needs because they develop them to match their own level and needs as a player.
Let’s build players confidence on the field. How do we do that? We have to get on the field with the ball. Simple drills, especially for beginner level players, of dribbling the ball up and down the field will build confidence of being on the field for youth players. The youth player with limited soccer activities can benefit greatly from just being on the field. Shooting on the goal in youth ages is only known as sitting in line waiting for your turn….What do I do after I dribble and want to shoot on goal?!? This is where practice moving up and down a field, any field, will make shooting on goal on the move more comfortable and smoother. Working on shooting from different parts of the field that most drills don’t cover will make that situation more comfortable.
Let’s look at the player that only has a backyard or small area to practice, no field available. Players can practice hitting against the fence and then running with the ball to transfer into a dribble. Passing and receiving a pass simulation from the fence can be a great way to work on game practice situation and quick change of direction.
We look at individual drills and think, why would an athlete work on individual drills? We want to work on low-pressure drills and maybe develop signature/favorite moves, or even some work on some problem issues in soccer. Individual time is a great time to work on building leg equality, as most youth league players are one leg dominate and the pressure of teammates eyes often make players uneasy about working on their weaker leg. With cones or landmarks individual drills can help players work on turning and dribbling with both legs. These type of drills can be worked on at anytime and anywhere making individual soccer drills a must for serious players.
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