Tuesday May 17 2016
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Soccer Skills: Striking the Ball

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Strength, speed and desire are all characteristics that help make a young boy or girl a better soccer player. Another trait that is equally important is shooting and passing accuracy.

It is hard to score and pass if you cannot control where the ball is going. With that in mind, here are several helpful hints for improving accuracy with the ball.

Remember to keep your body relaxed and loose. Keeping your arms out to the side will help you to keep your balance. Better balance means better aim.

Stay on the balls of your feet. It will help you to react quicker to the ball.

Pick the point you are shooting at and then switch your focus to the ball. It is important that you never take your eyes off the ball when striking.

Lock the ankle of your kicking foot with your toe pointing down. This allows you to hit the ball with the instep (laces). This is the ideal position to strike a ball.

Make sure your foot contacts the center of the ball and follow through. Again, it is important that you do not take your eyes off the ball because it would be difficult to strike it correctly.

Lastly, when striking the ball, try to limit the spin on it. The less spin the ball has while sailing through the air, the more accurate your aim will be.

Remember, to improve your accuracy – or any other part of your game – you must get out and practice. These steps will help you score and pass better as well as put you on your way to becoming more of a complete player.

Special thanks to Paul Halford, Director of Coaching and Player Development, PA West