One of the things many parents ask, is how they can help develop their kids’ football skills. If kids want to improve their football skills, they need to be going to practice and also putting in work outside of the team practices. Individual training allows them to improve their game and work on the skills they struggle with the most.
It’s important to remember that you can’t do the hard work for them. You can encourage them to practice, help them out with drills in the backyard, and drive them to team trainings. But kids have to want to get better and work hard themselves in order to improve.
Here are some ways you can help develop your kids’ football skills:
Make it fun
If your kids are already going to practices and games, they may not love the idea of practicing during the weekends or after school. But if you make it about having fun, they’ll want to improve their skills.
Get the whole family outside and split into teams. If you have a large backyard, this is a great place to play, otherwise head down to your local park. Encourage some gentle competition, and have something fun to look forward to after the game- maybe you can go out for ice cream or head to the beach.
Work on drills
There are a few basic drills that can help your kids improve their football skills:
Trapping is when a football player grabs the ball out of the air. Kick the ball high into the air, and get your kids to practice using the top of their foot to grab the ball and settle it to the ground. The trick is to avoid bouncing it high off their foot so they can control the ball and keep it close- ready to pass to a teammate.
Dribbling is a simple skill, but it’s also a great one for kids to work on in their backyard. Practicing this will allow kids to improve their coordination and agility, and they’ll learn to think a couple of steps ahead. Encourage your kids to keep their eyes up and in front of them so they can see what’s going on around them, instead of staring down at the ball.
To make it more fun, try to steal the ball from your kids so they can practice keeping the ball. If you have a dog, they can get involved too, and kids can try out moves to get past their dog.
Passing is another important skill that kids need to work on in their free time. Grab a ball, and spend some time passing back and forth. Encourage kids to pass directly to you. They need to be able to get the ball as close to their teammates as possible and make it easy for them to trap the ball.
Practice running together and passing the ball back and forth so they can learn to anticipate where you’ll be and where the ball will need to go.
Give them time for free play
Our kids’ time is often so heavily scheduled that they don’t have much time to simply grab a ball and their friends and have a quick game. Parents are usually driving them to various activities throughout the week and weekends, and kids also spend a lot of their time staring at various screens.
Instead of scheduling every minute after school and in the weekends, give them time to hang out. Limit their screen time, and if they complain about being bored, hand them a soccer ball and suggest they grab their siblings or some friends for a game.
This allows kids to improve naturally while having fun with their friends.
One fun way to help kids learn about football is to watch a premier league match with them. Talk about little details. What makes some players better than others? By becoming a “football mad” family, and incorporating the game into many other parts of your lives, you help your kids develop a passion for the sport. This makes it more likely that they’ll want to practice during their free time and get as good as the top football players they look up to.
Find a great club
If you want to help your kids develop their football skills, they need a high-level club with excellent facilities, and experienced, supportive coaches.
If your kids would like to try football, get in touch for a free trial, so they can begin working on their football skills with new friends and some of the best coaches in New South Wales.