Sept. 10, 2001
Basic Soccer Techniques
Make sure that you practice these basic techniques over, and over, again until they become second nature to you. The key to success is practice. If you think you’ve practice a technique long enough, you must practice even more. Remember, practice makes perfect.
Dribbling & Faking
Take your eyes off the ball and look at the ground about three yards ahead of it. Keep the ball close, touch it with the foot often, preferably with every step you take. Protect the ball by keeping your body between the ball and your opponent. Always touch the ball with the foot farther away from your opponent. Use fakes intelligently.
Passing & Shooting
Make sure your foot makes solid contact with the ball. Depending on the type of kick, either stretch your foot (point toes at the ground) or flex it (pull them up toward your shin). After your foot hits the ball, follow through with the entire leg. Focus your aim on shots. Pick out a corner of the goal and aim for it. Always move to meet a pass.
Move to meet the ball and let your foot “give” a little as it makes contact. For passes on the ground, raise your foot slightly so the ball can’t roll over it. Always control the ball into the open space away from opponents. On passes in the air, don’t let the ball bounce: It wastes time and increases your risk of losing the ball.
Pull your chin in to your chest and tense your neck muscles. Keep your eyes open as long as possible and watch the incoming ball (follow it with your eyes). Bend back from the waist, this provides the “wind-up” you need to hit the ball. Meet the ball at the top of your jump Take a running start.