Make sure everyone enjoys training
Your players give up a lot of time to train and play football, so they deserve to have fun sessions – and making training fun will encourage them to put more effort in, so they’ll improve more, too.
We all know football is fun, but here are a few tips to make your sessions even more enjoyable.
Mix it up
Routine is great for your warm up, but training can get boring if you do the same drills every week. Try to work on different skills from week to week, so that your players don’t have to repeat exercises too often. This will also have the benefit of developing more well-rounded players! If there is an area of the game your team needs to work on, it’s okay to practice that for part of your session every week – we have lots of drills for each skill so you can still keep things fresh.
Make it challenging
If your exercises are too easy, your players can start to lose focus, and they won’t develop as much as they would if they faced a real challenge. Most exercises can be made more challenging quite easily – tell the players they can only take three touches, for example, or introduce an extra defender – and use age- and skill-level appropriate exercises so your players practice the right skills. If you are doing a team exercise and it is uneven, don’t be afraid to mix the teams up to make it balanced again.
Find ways to keep score
Most players love an element of healthy competition, and it can encourage them to work harder to get bragging rights over their team mates. It’s very easy to involve scores in your exercises – for example, split your shooting practice into two groups and have them count the number of goals they score! When you’re doing this, you should make sure the teams are fair or one side could feel disheartened.
Players can get bored if they are not constantly involved in a training session, so if you have a large group consider splitting it up into smaller ones: one shooting drill with 16 players would be better done as two drills of eight players each. This is also a good chance to follow Tip 1 and “mix it up” as your small groups can be doing different exercises and then swap over. When you split your group up, try to keep players of similar abilities together, so that everyone can do exercises which are appropriate for their skill level. This is a great way of ensuring that all players within a mixed ability group can enjoy the same training session.
Warm Up on Match Day
Use the Coerver Rondos for both the under and over 12’s. The focus is on repetition of passing and receiving. It’s important that during this warmup, you ask the players to call/ask for the ball loudly, this will get them ready to do this when the match starts. Players over 12 also need to do supervised stretching, 5 to 8 minutes maximum.
These tips should help you make sure your training sessions are as fun as possible, while still helping your players develop and get the most out of them.