Instep Shoelace Kicks
A simple fun game to teach big long powerful instep drive monster kicks.
How to kick the ball properly with the instep, long and powerful.
Make sure that you have taught a proper shoelace kick before you use this game.
Tell your kids to back up about three steps, and when you blow your whistle they run up and kick their ball as far as they can. Have them all kick at once. Tell them to WAIT before they run, until all the balls have stopped.
I do not have them run immediately because often they could catch their own ball before it stopped. The object of the game is to see which ball went the farthest, so I like to hold them back until all the balls have stopped. This takes a little work, because they like to chase immediately and even kick it more than once.
On my second whistle, they run to their ball, and dribble back to where they shot from and stop it there, so we can do it again.
Variation 1: Place a target out in front. A parent of the coach works well for a target. When they do their monster kick, they try to hit the target in the legs, no dodging from the target! If they do, the player that hit the target gets to tell the parent or coach to make a funny animal noise. This variation adds an emphasis on accuracy as well as a long powerful kick. If you don’t have a parent or coach, then you can use a cone or another soccer ball, or anything you want, except that cones and soccer balls don’t imitate funny animals very well, which is why I prefer to be the target myself.
Variation 2: Use a portable goal. Place the goal out in front of the shooting line, and they all try to do a monster kick into the goal. Make sure you place it far enough away that they have to kick it hard to get the distance to go in. This also emphasizes accuracy and it is easier to hit a goal than a coach’s legs!
3 or 4 times doing this game is usually enough.
Comments: This game really teaches big long kicks, and it also teaches the idea of a “Monster Kick”. Once your kids are kicking well, you can then use “Monster Kicks” for corner kicks, goal kicks and kick-ins from the sidelines. Place a few of your other kids in front of the goal and have a monster kicker try to kick it to them.
When you start teaching opposite foot shooting, you can use this to practice the other foot too.
You must teach them a proper shoelace kick before you use this game.
The monster kick game is a great way to encourage good strong shoelace kicks, but it also a way to reinforce bad habits if they are using their toes!!
Do not allow “Toe-kicking!”
Correct toe kicks as early as possible. Toe kicking is a horrible bad habit that I see often in older kids from other teams. Just the other day, I was at a family BBQ, and kicking around with a 6 year old player, not from my team, and he used his toe all the time. I asked him how long he had been playing soccer and he told me for 2 years!
It is shocking to me that a kid could play soccer for two years straight and his coaches have never stopped him from using his toes??? They have never taught