Junior Football Tips – Important Football Skills Kids Need to Know
Football divides opinions, however it is a general consensus that there are several skills that players need to know. It is important that they master these skills as early as their junior football years. By starting them young, they will be able to develop the skills and become better players in the future.
The vital football skills are ball manipulation, ball stealing, and basic 1 v 1. There are young players who display the natural ability to do ball stealing or defensive skills even without formal training. However, the other two skill categories require some instruction in order to be able to do them with minimal proficiency. And the best time to learn them is through a junior soccer program.
Ball manipulation/ball mastery Skills
Kids should first learn the ball manipulation skills before anything else. It is important to know how to receive and shield the ball because the opponents will want to take the ball back. If a player knows how to hang onto the ball even with lots of pressure, then one will be able to make smarter decisions, such as finding a teammate to pass the ball to.
When a player is confident that he/she can master the ball, one will be less likely to just kick the ball away and let a teammate worry about it. A grassroots football coach will teach young players how to bring the ball under control, which is the first ball handling skill.
Shielding is to get between the ball and the opponent to protect it. Shielding is as easy as stepping over the ball when an opponent is coming in, or rolling or pulling the ball to one side. The latter requires more skill and dexterity because it involves the use of both feet.
1 v1 Skills
1 v1 skills are attacking skills that will help the player bring the ball to the opposing team’s side. A junior football coach will teach players basic dribbling skills that will allow them to bring the ball closer to the goal.
It is important for players to be able to control the ball without looking where it is. And when the defender tries to stab at the ball, the player must be able to go around the defender. It will take a lot of practice to perfect dribbling skills, and the right junior soccer program will allow your kid to practice the moves.
Ball Stealing Skills
Ball stealing or defence skills are important so that the other team can’t score a goal. The first thing that a coach will teach players is to use good footwork to delay the progress of the attacking player. It is important to delay the progress so that teammates can come and help on defending. Other defensive skills that can be learned in a grassroots football program are standing tackles and shoulder charge.
These are the skills that young players will learn in junior football. Once they have mastered the basic skills, then they can work on their kicking and passing techniques. It is best to start them young and develop their skills as they enjoy playing junior soccer. And in no time, they will be among the best players on the field.