Overlapping Full Backs Creating Crossing Opportunities

Overlapping Full Backs Creating Crossing Opportunities

The following activities teach the basics and importance of the "Overlap" Overlapping runs can help unbalance a defense to create opportunities to attack in advanced areas of the pitch. The Timing of the run is essential to avoid offside and to create a goal scoring opportunity from the cross.

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Goalkeeper Warm-Up Drills

Goalkeeper Warm-Up Drills

Goalkeepers need to be in great shape and prepared to defend every inch of the net behind them during the course of a long game. That means practices have to be productive to prepare you for game day. Here are four warm-up drills with video that you can do to get prepared for your session.

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Aerobic Endurance Training Session

Aerobic Endurance Training Session

As part of your preseason cardio training plan, you need to build a good aerobic base to help with the demands of a long season while preparing your body for high-intensity, short anaerobic activity. This is great soccer specific session to start some aerobic base building. 

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Re-evaluating the Role of Youth Coaches

Re-evaluating the Role of Youth Coaches

Again, we wonder why our players’ development over the past 30+ years has been extremely sluggish. We think that just because we have the resources and number of players we are fated to rule the soccer world. And yet our players are unable to perform even the simplest of soccer development tasks which is to lay-out their own playing environment. If you are skeptical then try this experiment at your next practice…

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How to Use Differentiation in Youth Soccer

How to Use Differentiation in Youth Soccer

Knowing how to differentiate in your sessions is an important skill for a youth soccer coach to learn and when mastered will take their coaching to a new level. Differentiation is when you tailor your coaching to meet the needs of your players who will either find the practice too hard or too easy.

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4 Stages of Technical Development

4 Stages of Technical Development

Accidents occur, frequently, at the airport and, often, involve a stick shift rental car driven by a person from a country where people drive on the right side – like the USA for example! It takes a while to adjust to driving in the UK. You really have to think about it!

I have learned that soccer players go through a similar process when learning a technique. Whether driving in the UK or learning the techniques of soccer there are four developmental phases which will need to be tackled. Let’s stick with soccer and forget the driving thing for the moment.

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Soccer is a Sideways on Sport

Soccer is a Sideways on Sport

Baseball, cricket, boxing and golf are all sideways on sports. Baseball players, cricketers and boxers are sideways on because they are one sided, right or left handed. This is not the only reason they are sideways on, however. Players have much less capacity to shift weight if they are flat footed and standing square. Shifting weight from back foot to front foot is one of the secrets to impact power. This is true of soccer players also but the reason we call this section “Sideways On” is because soccer is a 360 degree sport with high levels of activity going on all around the players and they need as wide a scope of vision as possible. Being sideways on gives soccer players the ability to see a comprehensive field of view and gives them many more choices than if they were facing the wrong way receiving a straight pass.

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Soccer – A Thinking Game

Soccer – A Thinking Game

There rarely seems to be a happy medium. Soccer players over-think. Soccer players under-think. When they do think, they can tend to think about the wrong things. Yet thinking is a skill that’s important. It determines how you feel – and how you feel influences how you perform. Of course what different players think and how different players think varies, but the common denominator seems to be thinking…every single time!

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Maintaining Fitness Levels for the Entire Season

Maintaining Fitness Levels for the Entire Season

This is the time of year where for most, preseason training is continuing or ending, and regular seasons are about to start. If you have prepared well, you should be in very good shape. Most players won’t be in their ‘top’ shape at the start of the season, but will be very close. Depending on your situation, you may need some extra work to be in top shape.

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Sudden Increases or Decreases in Loading Can Increase Injury Risk

Sudden Increases or Decreases in Loading Can Increase Injury Risk

Coaches often use preseason as a period for high loading to prepare players for the upcoming season. Research shows that sudden changes in typical loading can increase injury risk. Coaches should consider planning training intensity in a progressive manner.

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5 Things to Consider When Planning Preseason

5 Things to Consider When Planning Preseason

Preseasons are just around the corner for most teams. Here are 5 things to consider from John De Witt, Head Sports Performance Coach, Houston Dynamo Academy & Houston Dash, when developing your plan. 

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The Importance of Self–Motivation in Becoming a Top Player

The Importance of Self–Motivation in Becoming a Top Player

A recent interview with Arsène Wenger, manager of the topflight English club Arsenal, outlined the importance of young players learning to be “consistently motivated” in order to play at the highest levels of the game.

In his typically thoughtful style, Wenger defined a motivated person as “someone who has the capacity to recruit the resources to complete a goal.” He then gave an example of how he got lost jogging in Japan. He explained how he was motivated to come back to the hotel but could not find his way back. He could have hailed a taxi but as a sportsman he was determined to find a solution himself and find his own way back. In summary, Wenger believes that when you look at people who are successful they are the ones who are consistently motivated and always willing to made sacrifices to achieve their goals.

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The American Future Coach: The DaVinci Coach

The American Future Coach: The DaVinci Coach

UEFA’s brilliant Technical Director, Andy Roxburgh, penned the phrase DaVinci Coach shortly after the book ‘The DaVinci Code’ hit the bestselling charts. His 2007 presentation in Basle, Switzerland focusing on the skills of the European future coach captivated an audience of European Technical Directors who came away inspired and anxious to get to work. Over the years I have found that Andy has that effect on people. It set me on the road to thinking about the skills our American “Future Coaches” must have in our unique and challenging position.

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Team Games for Training Your Goalkeeper

Team Games for Training Your Goalkeeper

The key is to integrate your goalkeeper with the team. This can be done right from the warm-up phase of training. Watch a preview and get the full outline of this team games for training goalkeepers session from Tony DiCicco & Deb Raber that was presented at the 2016 Soccer Champions Coaches' Clinic.

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A Different Kind of High Intensity Workout

A Different Kind of High Intensity Workout

Since soccer is a sport that requires explosive actions separated by periods of recovery, the best way to improve your fitness is to do just that – perform activities of high intensity followed by some rest. High intensity workouts can involve more than just running!

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The Real Way To Train Like A Soccer Pro

The Real Way To Train Like A Soccer Pro

The real focus should be on what professional athletes did when no one was watching- before anyone knew they were going to be stars.  How did they build their athleticism?  How did they improve their skill and technique?  These are the questions that should be getting asked.

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Yoga for Soccer

Yoga for Soccer

Today, yoga is a mainstay for professional athletes and teams. More and more people are discovering the countless ways that yoga can be used to improve athletic performance—from increasing mental concentration and improving flexibility and balance to preventing common injuries and honing skills. If you can’t get outside this winter to work on your technical skills and even if you can but have some time to work in some yoga to enjoy the numerous benefits of this discipline, here are a few poses that can help you.

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Over Use and Under Development

Over Use and Under Development

Skills have to be at the top of the pyramid when it comes to the growth of an athlete, but in a lot of ways its been reversed.  Young athletes are specializing in one sport, developing the skills to compete at a high level, but still incomplete as a player.  They haven't developed the overall strength and agility that comes from a wide foundation of pure athleticism. For those of you who just love the game, whatever that game may be, here are 3 of my favorite corrective moves.

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