(Longer & Safer Throw-Ins)

A.   SIMPLE THROW-IN (for beginning or unathletic players)
1st    Stand facing the field with feet apart

2nd    Place one hand on each side of the ball

3rd    Take the ball behind the head and throw forward onto the field

  1. Both feet must stay on the ground
  2. Can stand on or behind the side line
  3. Ball must go behind the head
  4. Must use both hands equally (can't use only one hand & if there is a lot of side spin the referee may say one hand was used too much)
  5. Beginners should throw toward the other team's goal (the goal the opposing Goalie is in)
B.   ADVANCED THROW-IN (advanced or athletic players, U-8 & up)
Basic Teaching Points:
  1. Teach throw-ins without a ball (i.e., use an imaginary ball).
  2. Be sure the player drags the toes of rear foot so hard he can hear it (this requires knees to be bent).
  3. When the ball goes behind the head, elbows should be pointing out to the side (for power).
  4. Remain upright, follow through, snap wrists.
  5. Teach players to throw over opponent's heads (they're less likely to raise a foot when they throw over their opponents than if they throw toward the ground).
C.   WHY THROW-INS ARE IMPORTANT: Throw-ins are important because your team may get as many as 25 of them during a game. Longer throw-ins can result in scoring opportunities, but incorrect form will result in the assistant referee giving the ball to the other team, which then gets to take a throw-in. If you teach the following technique, your players can increase the distance of their throw-ins by up to 25%, and they will never be called by the assistant referee for incorrect form.
D.   COACHES: THROW-INS WITHOUT A BALL. A good way to practice throw-ins is to line your team up in a row shoulder-to-shoulder and have them practice their form without a ball (i.e., pretend they have a ball). On "go" have them all pretend to make a throw-in while you watch. Comment and have them do it again. Be sure they drag the toe of their rear foot so hard they hear it, that their hands go behind their head & that they are upright & follow through with both arms. Do this 5 consecutive times. If you do this, your team will have few bad throw-ins.
(This is written as if talking to the player)
  1. Start by holding the ball out in front of your face with your arms fully extended. Put your hands on each side of the ball with your fingers apart and pointing straight ahead. (Your thumbs should be pointing toward the top of the ball and several inches apart.) Now, take the ball behind your head so the ball touches the back of your neck. When the ball is touching the back of your neck, your elbows should be pointing out to the sides, not straight ahead, and your fingers should be pointing backward. (Having your elbows point out to the side allows you to use your chest muscles when you throw the ball, as well as your arms and shoulders. You can throw the ball farther because you are using more muscles.) You can bend your back a little for more power.
  2. Be sure the player drags the toes of rear foot so hard he can hear it (this requires knees to be bent).
  3. Now take a step forward and throw the ball. Keep your eyes on your target and stay upright (don't bend forward). Be sure to snap your wrists and follow through toward the target. (A full wrist snap adds more power.) Also, be sure to drag the toe of your rear foot so hard you can hear it and you'll never be called for having a foot off the ground.
F.   TYPICAL MISTAKES that will cause the referee to give the ball to the other team are:
  1. Lifting a foot off the ground before the ball has left your hands (this is why it is important to drag the toe of the rear foot)
  2. Using one hand too much (the linesman can call this if it is obvious or if there is a lot of sidespin on the ball it means you are using one arm too much & he can call it)
  3. Not taking the ball behind the head.
G.   WHERE TO THROW THE BALL: In some cases it may be best to throw the ball down the line, in some cases toward the goal, sometimes to an open teammate, or sometimes to "open space" near or in front of a teammate. (If you throw it to a teammate, you should usually throw it at his feet so he can control it). Usually you will throw in the direction you are attacking and must be careful if you throw it across the field or backward. You can throw it back to the goalkeeper and he can play it with his feet but he can't pick it up with his hands. It can be an advantage to do a quick throw-in if your team is in position and your opponents aren't ready. Usually, it works well for teams U-10 & under to throw down the line except when on the other team's half & then to throw toward goal. (After throwing down the line several times the defenders will usually be down the line & it may be open toward goal).

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