Importance of Keeping Instructions to Rec Soccer Players Simple
Remember: K.I.S.S.
Give players simple "Rules" to guide their decisions
"Don't get thrown over" is an example
9 Simple "Rules" soccer coaches can teach their players that will help them play better

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A recent exchange in the Premium Forum caused me to remember how critical it is to keep your instructions to your players simple � the K.I.S.S. idea. This is especially important for kids. When they get under pressure and excited, it's hard to remember what to do. That's why simple "Rules" that can guide their decisions work best.

Stating important concepts as simple "rules" is a useful way to teach young players, since most have been taught to "follow the rules".

Below are 9 of my "Rules" from Premium "22 Coaching Rules". These are "Rules" I taught my players. I would ask "What's the Rule"? For example, I might ask "What the rule for when to shoot?" If they didn't remember, I would say "If you have a clear shot, take it.", which is Rule no. 22 below. I'm going to add "If you are a Fullback, when clearing the ball away from our goal, kick it Straight Ahead" to the list. Here are 9 of my 22 Coaching Rules:

  1. Don't get thrown over" (When the other team has a throw-in). (During the game, be specific when giving instructions. For example, "John, move back 10 steps so you don't get thrown over"). See No. 3 below for the next step. Remember the Rule: "Don't get thrown over."
  1. "If the other team has the ball and you are the closest, you must be the "First Defender" & slow down their attack and try to block any shots.
  1. "Don't pass or dribble across the front of our goal".
  1. "You should always be shifting with the ball". (When the ball moves, so should you).
  1. "Forwards, when you are pushed up & waiting for a pass, stay 2 steps behind the Last Defender so you won't accidentally be called offside".
  1. "Don't try to dribble through the Last Defenders, it won't work. Instead, kick a "through ball", do a "give & go" or "pass to yourself" into open space behind the defenders."
  1. "If you are playing on the left side (LF, LMF, or LFB) or on the right side (RF, RMF or RFB), don't cross the "Center of the Field". (LMF is Left Mid-Fielder, RFB is Right Fullback, etc.).
  1. "Shoot high if outside the Penalty Box (i.e., toward the top of the goal) and low if inside the Penalty Box (i.e., on the ground & toward the corner)."
  1. "If you have a clear shot, take it."