Monday, April 28, 2014

U8 Practice Plan - Week 1- May 1

Stake out your section of field and set up shop.
Introduce yourself & get to know players names.
Talk about expectations & code of conduct (equipment, jewelry, fair play, being on time etc...)
Hand out uniforms.

Theme/Focus:  Dribbling

Dribbling cues
(with defender):
-ball close, lots of touches, use all parts of foot
-keep body/hip between you and defender ensure you can see ball and defender
-head up
(fast, break away style dribbling)
-ball still in control but pushed further ahead
-ball pushed forward with laces, toe pointed down
-head up 
for technique tips on dribbling in a fast break situation

Warm up:  
Freeze tag no balls to start, if you get tagged, freeze until someone comes and unfreezes you (show them how to freeze, legs apart, arms up and out)....then move to playing with balls, if you get tagged person unfreezes them by passing the ball between your legs (demo this).  You are dribbling around until you get tagged.
Link Tag (5 min)
Coach picks one pair to split where one is "it".  It chases other player, to be safe must link up with another pair, person on the other end of the pair must then be chased.

GAME:  Intersquad scrimmage (two teams) with 4 goals and to score you must dribble the ball through the goal (10min max)

Activities to focus on skill of dribbling: (20-25min)

Dribble Grid (about 5-10min)
Focus – Physical Literacy
Mark a 15 x 15 m square. The size may vary according to numbers. Players form pairs and find some space inside the square with one ball between two. (Or every player has a ball and set up 4/5 arches or small goals with cones in grid) One player in each pair starts with the ball, while the other rests. Players trade places on the coach’s command. The activity begins with the first player in each pair moving the soccer ball around the playing area using his/her feet and reacting to the coach’s commands:
1. Guide the ball with your feet as you weave in and out of the resting players/arches.
2. As above but on the coach’s signal run to the nearest cone on outside (ensure you have enough cones on outside as players) and take the ball in a circle around it using the inside/outside (your command) of your foot. Keep alternating from right foot to left foot.
3. “change”, players stop the ball, leave it and quickly go and get another’s ball and continue dribbling around the area.
4. “legs”, players try to pass the ball through the legs of as many resting partners/arches as they can before the coach says stop (Coach ask all resting players to stand with their feet apart).
5.  try commands like stop, turn (180 degree turn), toe taps on the ball etc...

Dribbling to shoot (cones are defenders)
Focus – Ball Familiarity
Divide players into two teams. Create two different patterns of cones to dribble around/through.  Players dribble through the cones, when they get to the last cone, players take a touch with the outside of the foot and strike at the empty goal. Players retrieve their ball and the next player goes. Players are encouraged to use left and right foot to strike at goal. Player encouraged to use different types of finishing i.e., laces, side of foot. Coach can keep score on success of each team.  Switch lines so that they get to dribble around different pattern of cones.  Could have three cone patterns to have 3 lines and move them quickly through.

Fast break on goal -with live defender
Two lines, staggered so attacker has about a 3 foot/1 metre advantage (or whatever is appropriate).  Coach has balls between the two lines.  Coach yells go and attacker dribbles (ensure you coach the different style of dribbling here) towards goal attempting to shoot and score before defender catches them.  If defender gets ball, play is dead.

Numbers Game - One Goal
Two teams, each player gets a number, so that there is a number 1, 2, 3 etc on each team
Each team lines up on one side of the goal.
Cone in line with goal post about 15 yards out that players must run around before attempting to play the ball.
Coach calls out number 2 (for example) and then 2's run out around cone and play the ball that the coach has served onto field, players attempting to score on goal.  Coach can serve from whatever location seems best for yourself (side of field, between two cones, one side of net etc...)

GAME:  Intersquad Scrimmage, two teams, two goals, normal rules of soccer.  Use the scrimmage to coach dribbling and any rules you may need to review eg. Throw ins (all the way behind the head, throw the way you're facing, use two hands, feet must stay on the ground), goal kicks etc... (10-15min)

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