This is a good soccer training drill to use if your young soccer players find it difficult to switch between kicking with their left and right feet. The exercise is a simple but very effective way of getting them to practise these skills.
You need a bit of preparation to run this soccer (football) drill, though. Remember to tell your players at the previous coaching session to turn up next time wearing one home and one away sock. In my team's case it’s easy – home is blue and yellow is away. But if you haven’t got home and away socks, get your players to roll one sock down.
How to run the soccer (football) drill
- All the players must wear the same colour sock on their dominant foot. For example, right-footers put the blue sock on their right foot, and left-footers put the blue sock on their left foot.
- Leave 25 minutes at the end of your coaching session to play a game focusing on the home and away socks. Play a normal game of soccer. It could be 4v4, 7v7 or any combination you can make up from your squad.
- During the game, keep changing the playing conditions. At first, the players can use either foot. Then you shout YELLOW, and they can only use the foot with a yellow sock on it. After five minutes you shout BLUE, and they can only use that foot.
- Playing this game will get your players used to playing with either foot. It gives a whole different perspective on their positions on the pitch and what they do with the ball.
- When the players are all using their 'wrong' foot, you will see very short passes and poor first touches. Eventually, they will become better with that foot – but, of course, this skill takes time. So run the soccer drill on a regular basis.
How to advance the soccer drill
Advance this practice by making one team’s goalkeeper sit out for five minutes during normal play. The weakened team then has to defend deeper so they are not giving away goals. You can also make the team with the goalkeeper play with their 'wrong' foot so long shots become more difficult.
Then try a five-minute period where both teams play with their weaker foot and both goalkeepers sit out. This helps players become aware of where the defenders have to move to, and also how an accurate shot can beat the defense and go into the net.
After this soccer drill give your players a few minutes of normal soccer, telling them you want to see either foot being used. You will be pleasantly surprised by how quickly they learn.
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Click here for a soccer (football) warm up drill to get players passing using their left and right foot.