INSPIRATION | CONFIDENCE | SUCCESS

Controlled headers and volleys

Teach players how to perform a controlled and accurate header or volley over a short distance – for example, when passing an aerial or bouncing ball to a team-mate – with this session.

What this session is about

  1. Heading
  2. Volleying

What to think about

  • Move into the ball’s line of flight.
  • Be ready on the balls of the feet.
  • Keep eyes on the ball and head steady.
  • Strike the bottom half of the ball but not underneath it.
  • Make good contact.
  • Decide between using the laces or the inside of the foot when volleying.

Set-up

Warm upSessionDevelopmentsGame SituationWarm Down
10 minutes10 minutes20 minutes15 minutes5 minutes

What you get your players to do

Four players in an eight-yard square. One player (the server) stands at one end with three players numbered one to three a line in the square. The server calls a number – the other two players run left or right to the other sides of the square while the player called runs forward to a ball served to him and he chooses to either volley or head it back to the server to catch.

Regularly rotate servers and the starting positions of the players.

The server calls a number and that player runs forward to either head or volley a ball back while the other two run to the sides.

The server calls a number and that player runs forward to either head or volley a ball back while the other two run to the sides.


Development

Play 2v2 in a 10×5-yard area with lines marked at 4, 6 and 8 yards and split down the middle. A server stands on the 4-yard line with the player on the 0-yard line. The server throws the ball to the player who heads it beyond the server to land in a target zone in his own half. Then repeat with controlled volleys.

Points are scored: 0-4 – 1pt, 4-6 – 2pts, 6-8 – 3pts, 8-10 – 4pts.

After two goes, switch roles and see who has the most points. Regularly rotate players and roles.

Server throws the ball from the 4-yard line and the player has to head, then volley the ball to land in a marked area to score points.

Server throws the ball from the 4-yard line and the player has to head, then volley the ball to land in a marked area to score points.


Game situation

Play 4v4 on a 20×10-yard area divided in half like a tennis court by either a net or tall cones. To start, one player serves the ball by bouncing it and volleying it into the other half. The other team can use any part of their body (except hands) to control or juggle the ball and get it back. They are allowed three bounces in their own half but can return in straight away if they can. If it bounces more or the ball is hit into the net/cones, the opposition gets a point. Keep score as you would in a tennis match.

  •  To progress, limit teams to a maximum of two bounces and three touches to receive the ball and return it.
  • To progress further, limit each player to a maximum of one touch each time the ball enters their half of the court.
Play 4v4 head/volley tennis where teams are allowed three bounces before they must get the ball back.

Play 4v4 head/volley tennis where teams are allowed three bounces before they must get the ball back.


What to call out

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