The World Cup may be over, but there are still a few more weeks left to live out your soccer fantasies. Soccer is a unique sport because it allows you the opportunity to flex your speed and agility skills, but the sport also requires a lot of mental acuity as well. There are a lot of rules in soccer that you must follow, which makes the game that much more challenging and fun to play. When it comes down to it, there are a number of ways to improve your speed and agility, so that you score more goals and win one for your team. Here are the top five soccer speed and agility training tips.
- Practice short distance running. Soccer is all about little spurts of running, which require jolts of energy. Most of us are probably used to long distance jogging, but those skills can actually hurt your speed in asoccer game. This is why you may want to head down to the track and practice short distance speed running. This type of running will be incredibly handy during a soccer game – and it will quicken your response time.
- Strengthen your core muscles. Muscle training is also important – soccer is all about utilizing your core muscles. Yes, you are using your feet, but you are always powering your feet by using your core – your back and stomach muscles. This is why you want to focus your physical fitness routine on strengthening your core. You can also strengthen your core by doing sit-ups, crunches and other exercises that make your abdominal muscles firmer. In a game where you can’t use your hands – unless you are the goalie – your core will almost become like a second set of legs.
- Create obstacle courses to boost your speed. If you want to boost your speed as a soccer player, you want to create an obstacle course where you can kick the ball around. Being able to maneuver the ball is incredibly important, because you will need to stick with the ball for large lengths of the field. One of the best kinds of obstacles that you can use is simply the cone – placing cones down and then racing through them can drastically improve your speed. Plus, they can be stored easily and repositioned infinitely.
- Practice the game in your own backyard or park. All you really need is some goal posts, a ball and some other equipment, and you can play your own impromptu game. When it comes to increasing your speed, actually playing soccer can really help. For instance, you can pick up someSKLZ portable soccer goals and soccer training equipment – it won’t be too expensive and the investment will make you a much better player.
- Stretch and eat a protein-rich diet before you play. Another important training tip is to keep a well-balanced and healthy diet. Soccer takes a lot of intense physical exertion and if your body doesn’t have the right nutrients, you will wind up getting burned out. In the end, you want to combine carbs and proteins to give you the fuel you need to train and also to play a great game of soccer.