Heads you win…

Heading is about more than just finding the net, so here’s a session that rehearses players on how to best execute a header into the path of a team mate, be that in the opposition’s box or in your own!

Play each drill for five minutes, looking to see how your players develop their technique.

How to play it

Heading warm-up

  • To start with, set your players up as shown in the picture above, with a five-yard gap between yourself and the first player.
  • Simply throw the ball to the player and tell him to head it straight back. Once done, the player returns to the back of the line and the next one steps forward. Create additional lines to ensure you have no more than five players per line.

Speed and accuracy

  • Now your players are warmed up, let’s work on pace and direction. Set up as shown above. The heading player is 10 yards from you and five yards from each of players A, B, and C.
  • The player heading the ball must head to the player you shout out, e.g. “B”.
  • At first, throw the ball so that when the player heads the ball, his feet are flat on the ground.
  • Then progress so that he has to jump to direct the ball.

Heading teamwork

  • Now organise five players in a zigzag formation – five yards between each. Player A throws the ball up and heads to B, who heads to C and so on, until it reaches E.
  • If the ball falls to the ground, the next player in the sequence tees himself up and continues the ball’s route – don’t go back to the start or some players may not get many touches! If E can keep the headers going he should try to head it back to D and so on.
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