Welcome to Pro Soccer Speed dot com - your No.1 soccer training resource for strategies and training tips for coaching and developing soccer speed.
You’re about to learn the quickest way to use the correct soccer speed training methods and increase your soccer speed. Guaranteed! To some soccer coaches and players, who perhaps don’t know any better, soccer speed training is simply about running fast in a straight line – like what an Olympic 100 metre runner would do. They pass it off as just another skill that would be nice to have. For many years, this mindset hasn’t been corrected, thus pushing soccer speed behind other skills coaches think are more important. To be blunt – they have been ignorant of the fact that true soccer speed is an essential skill to be coached and developed.
Why is soccer speed even important?
For forward thinking coaches, gone are the days when soccer speed was limited to having a ‘fast sprinting speed’. They now understand the various components of soccer speed – all of which need to be developed by following a comprehensive and holistic speed development programme.
Soccer speed is composed of many elements (including):
• Maximum speed capacity
• Quick response to passes
• Ability to change directions swiftly
• Ability to look at the opponents’ flaws and quickly take advantage
• Ability to sustain speed
• Ability to manipulate the ball at speed.
• Ability to assess a given situation before the ball arrives.
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Therefore an effective training programme should aim to address these.
Having discovered these elements that make up speed in soccer, the question then becomes: how to keep the elements in mind and programme drills to enhance a player’s speed of thought and movement? In top clubs such as Manchester United and FC Barcelona, speed is at the top of the agenda and thousands of pounds are routinely spent in it’s attainment. However, most coaches don’t have that kind of resources and even if they did, spending thousands of dollars will not necessarily lead to quicker players.
Buyer beware! Some programmes are based on theories that haven’t even been tested. As coaches, it’s your duty to find and/or develop programmes that suit the type of players and teams you are coaching AND use one that have been tried and tested.
What’s the importance of genetic potential in soccer speed?
A soccer player’s genetics definitely help in soccer speed training. It identifies the player’s maximum speed limit. However, it’s not the only determinant of one’s speed. At best a player’s genetics simply prescribe just how fast he or she can run. Let that be a warning to those so-called naturally quick and a word of hope for the rest of us!
Remember – there are a lot of instances when humans have been able to go beyond their genetic limits. The same holds true for soccer; some have unbelievable potential for soccer speed but, for one reason or another it never gets developed, while others manage to exceed their limits. Generally you’ll find that the best soccer players are not the ones who are genetically predisposed to be quick, but those that train hard enough to be so.
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A good schedule must at least cover the following:
• Begin with a warm up – not doing so can be dangerous
• Ball (skills) work – do as much with the ball as possible
• Simulate game situations – bringing meaning to what players are asked to do and perform
• Drills that encourage tempo and speed techniques
• Drills that encourage direction changes
• Drills that encourage short bursts of sprinting
• Drills that encourage decision making under pressure
• Drills that encourage quick feet
• Finish with an appropriate warm down
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Above all, keep your soccer speed development fun and engaging!