Individual football training – drills to improve your technique
Individual football training
Soccer is not only a great sport to play, it is also one of the most common sports played in the world. The sport is played in almost every country and according to a survey conducted by FIFA, has about 265 million active players involved in it at any given time. And unlike most sports, soccer doesn’t rely on a season either. The international football sees league season, league cup, club championships, along with international games throughout the year. These games are also accompanied with many friendly matches and World Cup qualifications of the sport’s big event. The game has more viewers than any other in the world and is true, a global sport.
A soccer player, unlike those of many other outdoor games, doesn’t have been very tall or incredibly well-built to play it. However, the game requires a lot of stamina and strength to be able to run around a field for the entire 90 minutes of the game, along with scoring goals. One needs to determine what position they could play at, as each one of them is as important as the other. Football is one game where every player could have an equal chance of scoring depending upon their strategic placement on the field. Apart from that, a player’s footwork is another essential factor to a player’s success.
Is a game where one goal alone can make a difference, and thus, using your footwork effectively against the rival team becomes an important part of your training. Since it’s a team game, a soccer training also deals with communicating with your team members on and off the field, and how to perform better against one’s opponents.
Individual football training can be thus, taken up by any individual to work on their game and get more fit. These programs are highly suitable for players who’re looking to improve their own game and working on how they perform. These programs can be taken up separately when not training with the team or can be worked upon by themselves, when at home. A good soccer player always realizes the power of Individual football training and how having a ball all to themselves for rolling, juggling or dribbling can be helpful. One can practice the best of their footwork and improve upon it only when training individually.
Drills for individual soccer training
There are many drills one can do for individual Football training that’ll not only help improve their technique but will increase their stamina and make them faster on the field as well. The drills that can help your individual soccer training are:
Juggling, though easy, is an essential training element and is on that is often overlooked. It allows the players to use all parts of their body to handle the ball and often builds their confidence. This can help one in passing the ball in the actual game through the head, shoulder, etc. when using the foot becomes difficult. Juggling for a few minutes every day can make a player comfortable with the ball and is thus a very helpful technique.
When juggling, make sure to use all over body parts like legs, knees, chest, head, etc. to feel comfortable with the ball. It is indeed crucial that one does play with their good foot only. Try juggling the ball amongst your two feet and hands at least 50 times. Juggling can be done for at least 20 minutes a day. The key to proper juggling includes curled up toes, locked ankle, slightly bent knees, alternating limbs, and being quick.
Soccer Shielding is a technique of keeping one’s ball in their possession by locking it between the opponent and themselves in such a way that the opponent is unable to reach for it. While playing, the player shielding the ball must turn a little sideways to create a barrier between them and the defender. Keeping their knees slightly bent all the time, they must keep at least one of their arms closer to the defender in order to stop them from taking the wall. Here, if the player is able to feel the ball more than it is able to touch it, the position becomes very ideal and will consequently, help to put the defender away.
In order to make sure one doesn’t get caught, one must keep their body as a shield between the player and the ball. You should always keep your footwork locked in and don’t expose too much of it to the opponent.
One can learn upon their dribble techniques of both short and long area by some very simple techniques. One of them is to form a triangle on the of a 5 yards side length for each of them. At the farthest end of the triangle, thus, lies the coach who helps with your hard work and skills. It is also important to keep your arm out while dribble training to make it more complex to handle and better tactics. One must focus on good passes and speed while working on the dribble techniques. The skills involved in this dribble training are:
Inside foot passes as well as outside foot passes for a minute each.
One minute on top of the foot valley and then another couple of minutes for foot volley and thigh volley.
After that, the dribble could involve a minute worth of chest volley and headers along with 1-touch and 2-touch dribbles.
Under tight situations, it indeed becomes essential for players to handle the ball well. Thus, a coach must make their individual players where the number of people allowed could be minimal. Quick feet dribbling also teaches you how to get the ball away from any player in the shortest span of time. Therefore, this training increases the reflex of the people.
Chest Trap: Keeping the ball
Keeping the ball in your possession at any given point in the game is one of the best techniques. However, this position is difficult to reach and thus, needs to be tackled creatively. Thus, different forms of chest trap can help you possess the ball in a different manner and makes use of your chest, then your feet. The handling of the ball in both scenarios is different. For example, a flighted ball is often tender to receive but could be far ending up taking more time than we went there. The two most important techniques of chest trap are:
Keep your shoulders and hips square to the ball and bend your knees for a while. The body must also be positioned behind the flight of the wall. One needs to lean back slightly from the trunk of the body to absorb the pace of the ball. After that, one must withdraw their chest as soon it touches the ball and then
Bouncing Ball: In this case, one is to bend at the waist, and lean forward over the rising ball to throw it off. Here, as soon as you withdraw your chest off the ball, it falls off
Chest Volley: Though very rare, and something that takes great practice to master, a few players do make use of chest volley to keep the ball in their possession. Here, one is supposed to lean back slightly from the trunk of their body and as soon as the ball touches the chest, push the chest out towards the ball to pop the ball up.
Heading: Heading is an important technique to learn in soccer for both defenders and attackers. For defenders, it helps them clear balls from the back and bring the game to the middle of the field and for attackers, it helps them get the ball through the opposing goalkeepers and right into the goal. Thus, heading drilling should be an important part of your individual football training as it serves as a crucial part of the actual game. But, heading only works for older players in the game, so players under 8-10 years of age cannot benefit much from it.
Some important things to keep in mind while practicing heading are that the ball should make contact only at the forehead, between the eyebrows and the hairline. Apart from that, the ball shouldn’t be bounced from the head but rather struck off of it. One’s eyes must be open, with the head moving towards the ball, neck stiffened, and back slightly arched. The muscles used in while approaching the ball are the back and stomach muscles which also lean the body forward after the strike, thus, helping it recover.
The drills differ for attackers and defenders as the heading functions differently to each of these players. For defenders, the purpose is to throw the ball up and away from the field to clear the possibility of the goal for the opponent. However, for attackers, it is to throw the ball in the downward direction to score an immediate goal. The heading drills that one can do are:
Juggling the ball using just the head
Header sit-ups with another player where one does the sit-up while the other passes the ball with their head
Passing the ball through the heads. Here, the tossing would differ depending upon the characteristic of the player.
Steps for Individual Soccer Training
Now that you’ve learned the kind of drills you can follow for your individual soccer training and the techniques you can improve upon, here are the steps in which you can follow your individual soccer training ‘to the T’ and make the most out of it. The following steps could vary depending on your strengths and weaknesses, however, these are the basic individual training steps one can start off with.
Start off with a warm up where you can begin with your passing techniques. Here, you could hit the ball at the cross bar from mid-field and jog to get it from there. Post that, you can dribble the ball while alternating foot to work on the speed and concentration. You can also strike the ball using your weaker foot and see how strong it can become. The key here is not to damage the ball with a straight kick, but to get a feel of it while by getting a lift in that hit. This will help you pass and dribble the ball from anywhere in the field and will give you a better judgment of it.
Move on to working on your juggling after hitting the crossbar at least 5 times. Juggle with each of your foot, with repeated cycles of using your foot, both thighs, chest, and head, and repeat the same for at least 4 times. Post that, juggle with the ball while you jog for twenty years in the field. This will improve your stamina and overall game.
After you’ve practiced your dribbling and juggling, you could move onto practicing your striking techniques. Find a wall you can work against and strike on it with controlled force. Make sure you don’t hurt your muscle and stop right after kicking the ball. You both of your feet, as well as the inside and outside of it and work out various ways to strike goals.
Controlling your kicks
Work on controlling your kicks from the instep of your foot by striking the ball high up in the air and moving across the field, surpassing a defender. Controlling the ball and keeping it in your possession while moving in the game is the most important aspect of it.
You can work more on your dribbling post this by setting up a line of cones and looking ahead as your dribble. This will improve your focus, and give you more confidence about knowing your ball and the control of your feet as you go ahead in the game.
Later on, you can practice your favorite moves from various games or any other tricks that you might have learned for a while. But it’s always important to cover your basic techniques before you start practicing your moves.
After you’ve covered all your drills, move on to stretching for a while and do some workout including a set of push-ups and sit-ups to increase your strength. Combine this with slow jogs around half the football field as well as a few minutes of juggling to mark your one day of training.
Warning for individual soccer training
Individual football training can be done on your own or with the help of a personal guide or coach. However, there are still a lot of things one must pay attention to while training so as to not injure or hurt themselves.
Make sure all the equipment you’re using is in good shape
Do not wear shoes that are too old or worn out
Keep your sessions for as long as your body allows. Starting with about an hour worth of sessions with increasing levels of hardness later on
Work your way up. Started with exercises and drills that require lesser energy and go on increasing the difficulty
Always go in for exercises in addition to your sessions to keep yourself fit and healthy
Individual football training is highly beneficial for players to work on their own strengths and weaknesses. Not only do they get to learn new techniques that might help them, it also reflects on their team. This also keeps the individual player fit, and thus, improves the entire team’s game.