Here at Junior Soccer Tips we aim to share with you sound soccer coaching hints and tips so that you can develop your mini (Under6 to Under 9), junior (Under10 to Under 12) and youth (Under 13+) soccer players to be the best that they can be.
In this soccer tip we’ll share with you a drill that we regularly do with our junior and youth players to increase their speed of thought and footwork.
It’s called Round The Clock Soccer Speed Drill. Actually watch this soccer video for an extensive explanation…
This soccer drill needs a few minutes to organise but once you understand how it works it can be a great exercise to use with your players. Speed of thought, quickness of feet, getting their head up, as well as having to listen and react quickly are all part and parcel of this drill.
You can use this drill with or without a ball.
Watch the drill animation below for a fuller explanation.
Set up your cones so that you what represents a clock face, i.e. 12 cones laid out at 5 minute intervals.
At the 12, 3, 6 and 9 times, I would place a seperate coloured cone. This is where you will place your teams.
Split your squad up, ideally you should have at least 12 players per clock face, so put 3+ players on each 12, 3, 6 & 9 o clock coloured cones.
Now for the slightly tricky part… depending on how quickly your players pick this bit up you may some fun getting started. Each of the four groups stood on their coloured cone is standing on their clock face at 12 o’clock.
You aim is to pick a time, say 4 o’ clock and then the players must run, clockwise to their respective 4 o’ clock cone. If you are finding this narrative a little confusing don’t worry the video drill below will make sense.
If your players have understood your instruction and have all run in a clockwise fashion to their respective 4 o’ clock then they should all have run to a seperate place, although they may have crossed paths in the centre of the clockface.
As soon as they get back to their respective 12 o’clock shout out the next time for the second player in line to run to. The second player can’t go until their first team mate is back. So iff their team mate is lagging behind a bit they have to work harder for the next team mate otherwise they will start to fall behind and the rest periods in between will be very short. (Please note… don’t overwork the players!)
The distances that you want to have your players covering should be appropriate to their age and ability for mini soccer (7 – 9) no more than 8 yards in diameter, junior and youth 10 – 15 yards.
12 cones per clockface, 12 players+
- Listenting skills
- Alertness to where they should be running
- Anticipation of the start, or for the hand over in a relay race
- Quick short strikes on the ground to build intial momentum
- Feet approximately shoulder width apart with body leaning forward over the first couple of yards
- Toes turned out slightly to get maximum push of soles of feet (watch how sprinters get that acceleration in the first few yards)
- Stride lengthening to cruise
- Deceleration and change of direction
- Head up looking at what they may bump into
In order to progress this drill you could…
- Give the players a ball to dribble with not just running