Soccer practice ideas that are fun and teach more in less time from SoccerHelp. Many youth coaches still have inefficient and boring practices that use drills and where players spend more time standing around than playing soccer.
Soccer practice attendance will improve, your team will improve much more quickly and your practices will be more fun if you do the following:
- Be organized, have a practice plan and get there 10 minutes early to check the field and set up for your first SoccerHelp Practice Game. SoccerHelp Premium contains Practice Plans to help coaches get started or become better organized..
- Be sure each child has a ball (tell each child to bring one, but bring some extras in case they forget).
- The key to improvement is "touches" on the ball. Ideally, each player should be dribbling, passing, kicking or playing in a Practice Game for the entire practice. Try to plan your practice so each child will get at least 100 touches on the ball.
- The best way to teach your players is by using SoccerHelp Practice Games. SoccerHelp Practice Games are much better than drills or scrimmaging. A good Practice Game is one which is fun, which teaches skills, concepts, team play or field awareness, where everyone is active, where there are lots of touches on the ball, and which is quick and easy to set up and simple to explain and manage. The very best Practice Games, such as our "Dribble Across A Square" and "2 Team Keep Away" games, are also "self teaching", and players learn by playing the game. If you are spending too much time on set-up or instruction, simplify it. If it's not fun, it's not a good game. There are thousands of drills and practice games available on the Internet, but less than 5% meet the criteria established by SoccerHelp. Try our Practice Games. They really work and your team will improve more quickly. You will notice the difference after just a few practices. See the "Testimonials and Success Stories" for comments by coaches. We have spent hundreds of hours selecting, testing and refining the SoccerHelp Practice Games.
- Encourage parents to bring players to practice on time.
- Don't have players standing around watching or standing in lines while only a few practice with the ball (you won't be able to totally avoid this, but you can minimize it).
- Don't use drills if you can use a SoccerHelp Practice Game.
- Don't scrimmage too much. Only scrimmage for 10-15 minutes at the end of practice. SoccerHelp Practice Games are much more beneficial than scrimmaging. If you scrimmage, use the "Small Sided Scrimmage Without a Goalie" Practice Game in Soccerhelp Premium, it will teach all players to learn to defend and to work as a team to move the ball into scoring range. Large-sided scrimmages don't give each child enough touches on the ball (especially the less skilful or less aggressive players), don't allow you to practice specific skills or concepts, and can actually reinforce bad habits. In brief, they are not the best training method for recreational coaches. If you follow the SoccerHelp Program, your team will improve much more rapidly and play better as a team than a team that spends most of their practice time scrimmaging.
If you want to read more about this subject, try these related topics (these are links):
Testimonials and Success Stories (youth coaches talk about the SoccerHelp program and how it has helped their teams)