When it comes to soccer, children will automatically kick the ball in a manner that feels most natural to them. However, what you need to know is that if the kick is not placed correctly, it might cause injury and if your kid is young, the chances of injury are higher. If your kid learns the techniques better at a young age, it would result in them excelling as a soccer player and due to the incorporation of correct technique; there are lesser chances of injury. It is the responsibility of a coach to ensure that the kid learns the striking technique correctly. There are multiple ways in which it can be done. However, out of the lot, the most effective way is working to enhance muscle memory.
- What does Muscle Memory mean?
A technique in which the body learns certain motor skills when it is done repetitively is known as muscle memory. When your muscles carry out repetitive activities, it leads to the development of muscle memory. When your muscle memory is strong, you can engage in that action without having to put in your concentration or effort continuously. You could do it just like how you would walk.
- Soccer and the relation to muscle memory
Muscle memory is highly essential when it comes to soccer. Although it will take some significant effort to get the striking technique right in the first place, once the muscle memory is developed, you will not have to think a lot before you kick the ball. Additionally, the time you would need to think about kicking the ball can be utilized in a better manner to assess the placement of players, direction to be kicked in and how you can tackle other players, thereby helping the soccer performance.
- How sports coaches can improve the striking techniques among youth?
Soccer drills will prove to highly effective if you are planning to improve the striking technique of the kid. To start with, the easiest way is to start with a simple soccer kick. In this drill, he child will have to stand at least four or five steps away from the ball either on the left or right side. They will then have to run and kick the ball aiming at the goal. Once the child kicks the ball, they should repeat it multiple times.
This way, the coach can watch the manner in which the child strikes the ball and then offer advice and training about how to do it right and improve the soccer kick technique. Merely having multiple repetitions will not do any good, unless the proper technique is followed. If the child continues to do it in an improper technique, they will get it wrong and will not be able to kick the ball properly later.
You will have to take care of the following aspects when a young sports athlete performs a soccer drill:
- Ensure that the top of the foot is used instead of the toe to place the kick and instep of the foot is made use of while passing the ball.
- When the top of the foot is used, ensure that the toes are kept down.
- Ensure that the kick lands at the middle of the soccer ball and not in the edges.
- Making sure that after the kick, the leg follows the course and does not stop immediately.
- Maintaining stability of the other leg to ensure that it is a full-powered kick.
- Tackling the ball with the correct approach speed.
Coaching children and helping them build muscle memory is not an easy task and you will have to do it in a way in which the kid enjoys as well, while building their muscle memory! Ultimately, it all depends on the effectiveness of the coach.
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