Youth: How to Practice Your Skills During COVID-19 Lockdowns
Nov 25, 2020
*This article is part of an educational series for soccer parents and players new to soccer*
Winter is coming, and with it, the second wave of COVID-19. For many people, this means more restrictions and lockdown measures. This season is a double whammy of cold weather and social distancing measures putting team practice and games off the table for soccer players.
So how do you keep your skills during the cold winter months? Here we offer some tips and tricks to help keep your soccer skills in shape until spring.
Focus on the Basics
Just because you are stuck at home doesn’t mean you can’t get some practice in. There are lots of ways to work on your soccer skills at home. All you need is a tiny bit of space, some cones and a ball to get started.
Everyone from beginner players to the pros can benefit from a brush up on basic moves and techniques. Lockdown is an excellent opportunity to focus and spend some time perfecting your core skills and ball mastery. Here are some ideas:
- Practice dribbling with a smaller soccer ball to help work your ball control skills.
- Set up a small obstacle course with cones and other objects you have lying around the house. Dribble and pass the ball through - this works your control, balance and works both feet. You can also change the layout every day, so you’re always doing something new.
- Kick a ball against a wall - It’s an oldie, but a classic for a reason. Find an empty wall with a bit of space and kick a ball at it. This activity helps your passing, shooting and ball control, and you can do it all on your own.
- Keep a ball lying around the house - the idea with this exercise is that you take the ball with you wherever you go. It’s a simple idea, but it can have a significant impact on how you interact with the ball over time.
Take Advantage of Online Practice Videos
Many professional soccer players and training clubs created soccer training videos during the last lockdown and have continued to post new tips and ideas. These videos are a great chance to look at the technique of these pros and learn some helpful tips.
A quick search on YouTube will bring up videos for all levels of ability, from kids learning the basics of soccer to experienced players looking to improve their technique. Lockdown is a great time to kick back, scroll through the video options and learn something new.
Practice With Your Bubble
Sure, they may not be the next soccer superstars, but practicing with your family or the folks in your bubble can be a great way to work on your skills. It is also an excellent way for everyone to get some exercise during the lockdown.
If you have young kids in your life, they will be thrilled to be included in soccer practice and may even learn a thing or two from you. Keep it simple; keep it fun, and everyone can benefit from the exercise and time together.
Think About Overall Fitness
If you can’t practice drills with your team during the lockdown, you can still work on your overall physical condition. Keep your endurance up by going for a walk or a run every day. Running keeps you in shape, helps kill stress, and is an easy thing to do during the lockdown.
During the lockdown, the thing to remember is to keep active, practice various activities so you don’t get bored and take advantage of the time to hone in on the basics. Storelli has practice gear to help keep you moving, motivated and feeling comfortable. Check out our equipment pages for more ideas.
Follow these tips, and we’ll all be back on the field this Spring in better shape than ever.