When coaching soccer drills includes heading as an important skill to be taught to young players, it sets the game apart from all other sports. Heading can be delicate, controlled, as well as self-motivated and amazing all at once. If each player in your team is trained on the skill of heading, you will almost be certainly one up on the opposition.
When it comes to teaching soccer, the value of heading can be seen form the fact that it improves the effectiveness of a player by 30% once he learn to head the ball correctly.
Coach the young players in team to do the basic header by way of impelling the upper half of the body frontward to bang the ball using the forehead. They should be taught to thump the ball just below the hairline, on the smooth part of the forehead.
They should keep their eyes open until the contact with the ball is made. The reason is that if their eyes are closed, the probability of making an accurate contact with the ball is very less. Guide the young players to strike the ball with the use of their neck muscles. Using these muscles scatters and transmits the bang of the ball equally all over the body.
If the neck muscles are relaxed, the total impact of the bang will be absorbed by the head only. Also, they must keep their mouth shut while heading the ball to avoid biting their tongues.
Of all the tasks in coaching soccer drills, getting young players to attack is the hardest notion. Herein the players must go after the ball with full energy to grab the ball. It has a special bearing in heading. In the course of soccer practice, make sure that the kids are taught to head the ball and not the ball heading them.
There is one thing that you must know. The biggest problem that you are going to face in teaching heading is purely psychological. It is the fear of using the head to contact the ball. But it’s easy to handle this situation.
In coaching drills, let go of this pressure by telling the players to sit around their coach forming pairs amongst themselves. Give a ball each to every set of players. Show them the contact area by holding the ball in your hands and tapping it gently onto the forehead. Now tell the players to do the same.
After that, before the practice starts, take some pressure out of the balls. This way the players will be able to perform repeated headers without experiencing headaches and sore noses. After some time, when the players learn to do it and get proficient, bring in balls with slightly higher pressure.
The use of the trick has a dual benefit of eliminating the fear of players to head the ball and becoming skilled at it in no time. It’s critical for a skill like heading in coaching soccer drills that it is performed only when the coach is sure that players know exactly how to do it.
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Andre Botelho is the author of "The Expert Youth Soccer Coaching Guide" and he's an expert in the subject of Coaching soccer drills. Tp explode your players' skills and make coaching fun in less than 29 days, download your free Soccer Coaching guide at: Coaching soccer drills.