Or go directly to each coaching book to try a free practice plan:
Kids Practices (Ages 4-8)
Youth Practices (Ages 9-12)
Competitive Practices (Ages 13+)
Soccer Goalkeeper Practices
Systems of Play & Tactics
300 Soccer Drills Collection
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WHY WE CREATED THIS SITE
Soccer drills are the basic building blocks for the sport. Whether it's kids playing street soccer or a very qualified coach running a soccer practice, soccer drills are happening!
In street soccer, kids make up fun games and just play. That's a soccer scrimmage drill. They vary the rules. They play 1v1, 3v3, with a goalie or without. They vary the size of the goals.
They invent other games. Penalty kick competitions - a basic shooting soccer drill. They'll juggle the ball, a basic ball control soccer drill.
They'll try to cross balls for headers, a fundamental tactical soccer drill. So the very origin and nature of how we learn the sport is based on drills.
Coaches are a different story. Knowledgable coaches build their soccer practices based on the fundamentals of street soccer. They run soccer drills that involve the players, have a purpose,
are fun and teach soccer skills. New coaches or coaches that are overly concerned with being teachers, run soccer drills in a way that may have players standing around.
They design soccer practices that are too short for the scheduled time and then are stuck with little to do. Or, they design practices that are too long for the scheduled time and then rush the drills. Or they are not prepared at all and make it up as they go.
Some coaches do not balance their practices. Their drills may be all about basic skill, no tactics included. Or they are all about fitness, few touches of the ball, etc.
To help out, we have developed the definition, design principles and tips for effective soccer drills and soccer practices.
HOW WE DESIGNED THIS PROGRAM
Our sponsor, www.soccerpracticebooks.com has developed a series of soccer drills appropriate for different age and skill levels.
That was the key. These soccer drills are designed to flow easily, maximize touches on the ball and provide the skills and knowledge for
players to learn how to play good quality soccer.
But there is more. The soccer drills are combined into a soccer practice format that flows well and covers all aspects of the game.
These soccer drills and practices sessions include warm-ups with essential soccer stretches while executing fundamental soccer drills
and learning skills. Technical competence is generated in game situation technical drills. Fitness drills usually involve use of
a soccer ball. Tactical soccer drills keep everyone moving in small units and occupied with a ball. The final scrimmage ties
it all together. Mental training is designed into the soccer drills to teach anticipation, reaction, perseverance, communication,
vision and problem solving. It is effective and fun. We are providing basic coaching advice for soccer drills, specific tips and resources to
enhance the practice books provided by our sponsor.
WHO DESIGNED THIS SITE
This site was designed by Tom Sauder and his associates.
Tom has many years of coaching experience at all levels, from 3yr olds to University and adult amateur.
Tom continues to research new concepts in soccer coaching. He observes teams play games and practice to pick up new
ideas, or observe errors and mistakes. These observations generate new soccer drills or tips, provided on this site.
WHEN WAS THIS SITE CREATED
This site was created in early 2004. However, the soccer drills, soccer practices, and tips were created
over 20 years through research and collaboration with many soccer coaches. This is the culmination of soccer drills
and soccer practice plans from these years, from all cultures and continents.
Number Of Ball Touches To Develop Skill
The key to developing soccer skills as a young kid is the number of touches you get on the ball. I heard it said long time ago that 4000 ball touches per week are a good number. So let's do the soccer math:
As a kid, we used to play 3 hours a day, 6 days a week. Half of it was 1v1 , 2v2 or 3v3 games with lots of individual action. The other half was full field scrimmages. At an average of 5 touches a minute, this translates into 5400 touches a week or more.
Contrast this with what you see on soccer fields today. First of all, kids tend to only play in organizations, i.e. clubs. If they are fortunate, they practice twice a week for 1.5 hours and play one game. Let's observe practices. The absolute killer to soccer skill development are line drills with many kids sharing one ball. You can tell by kids standing around waiting. Next are long set up times the coach uses between drills. Then you see warm-up runs without a ball and fitness work without a ball followed by full field scrimmage. If the kids are lucky they get 200 touches a practice and maybe 20 in a game. Total is 420 per week and you wonder why kids aren't as skillful as they used to be? As they grow older, it becomes more and more difficult to make up for that lost time.
That is why our practices at www.soccerpracticebooks.com are based on maximizing the number of touches on the ball. The key principles is to work in small groups of 2-4 players for most drills. Warm-ups quite often involve individual ball work. Fitness drills involve a ball as well. Players never wait for their next touch of the ball. We also have designed the entire practice sessions such that a coach can set up cones for all the drills before the practice starts, so that there is no time wasted between drills. We focus on continuous action with the ball. In our typical 90 minute practice session, we estimate a player gets between 700-1000 touches. At two sessions per week and a game this gets you to 1420 to 2020 touches a week or five times what you see around the parks.
We believe we are close as possible to delivering the skill development of earlier generations. Try our practices - you won't regret it.
Copyright Sauder Consulting Inc. 2001-2010.