5 New Year’s Resolutions to Improve Your Soccer Skills

Welcome to 2013 - (Photo: Oaklandnorth.net)

With 2012 in the books and 2013 upon us, the time is ripe as any for a serious soccer player to change their training ways and make some good resolutions.  Becoming a solid player requires daily training on the ball and a great deal of dedication.  Creating some New Year’s resolutions can be an excellent way to push yourself towards your goals as a soccer player.  Here are 5 great resolutions for soccer players in 2013:

1.  Join the “100 club” – Juggling a soccer ball is an art.  Although some people claim that all the tricks and nifty kicks of juggling a ball are rather useless for actual game training, they are completely wrong.  Juggling (with your feet) is a great way to practice your touch on the ball, especially with aerial passes and gaining control of the ball.  If you can juggle the ball over 100 times you will forever be a member of the sacred “100 club” and will have improved your touch greatly.  If you are already in the club and wish to make juggling more difficult, try kicking the ball twenty feet in the air for each touch and see if you can still maintain the control.

2.  Go for jogs – Soccer involves a ton of running.  Professional players typically cover around five miles per game, and the distances still surpass one mile even at the youth level.  Therefore go for a weekly jog, or if you are more adventurous a jog every other day.  Keeping up your running habits will help you immensely in soccer and keep you in top condition.  This pays big dividends at the end of matches.  When your team desperately needs someone to make a driving run and set up the game-winning goal, the fittest player will rise to the challenge!

3.  Score a hat trick – Scoring goals is a wonderful experience that every person who has ever played the game will look back upon fondly.  The best moment for players is definitely when they score three goals in a single game.  Dubbed a hat trick, this achievement is well worth the effort and practice and will make you go home a champion, as well as give you the confidence to push your game to the next level.  However, don’t let your personal goals get in the way of the team’s goals.  Yes, personal glory is wonderful, but if a teammate is open show some unselfishness and make the right pass.

4.  Work on shooting – Have you ever seen Robin van Persie take a penalty kick?  If you can routinely place a shot in the top corner of the goal, you will be well on your way to increasing your goal-scoring efforts.  One tip to work on is to focus on placement over power.  Of course you want your shots to blast past the goalie, but a well-aimed effort can often glide past the keeper into the lower corner of the goal.  Another idea is to keep shots low because they are more difficult to save.  This forces goalies to fall to the ground and work hard to save the ball.

5.  Relax and have fun – Soccer is a game after all.  Players who take the game way to seriously are always frustrated and cannot relax and enjoy it.  Often that leads to mistakes.  You want to be the player enjoying yourself because it will lead to good things.  Simply loving the game ad appreciating it will probably go a long ways to helping you relax and can often make someone a better soccer player.


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