Soccer games are a series of sprints and fast decisions.
Players need fast starts, stamina, and agility to perform well on the field.
The good news is every soccer player can use speed training drills to improve their skills.
Try acceleration, endurance, and flexibility drills to help you sprint, control the ball, and improve reaction time.
Sprint drills help you start and stop faster, and reach your top speed. They also strengthen your legs.
Before you start, check your posture. Keep it natural. Don’t lean too far forward or bend at the waist. Keep your head up and look forward. Relax your shoulders.
Your arms should be close to your sides. Lift your knees high. Run in smooth, even strides. Breathe.
Now, run your sprint drill. Move as fast as you can for a short distance, say 10-30 yards.
After running at top speed, turn around and walk back to the starting point. The return trip to the start line is your rest period between sprints.
Repeat the drill 2 to 4 times. Make sure you rest between sprints.
A variation on this drill is to run sprints up a hill. Sprint as fast as you can, then walk back down the hill for your rest.
NOTE: It’s important to warm up your muscles before doing the drills to prevent injury. Jog for 10 minutes. Use dynamic warmups like lunges to prep muscles for speed training drills.
Players can run, kick, pass, and maneuver around players for up to 90 minutes during a soccer match. That requires stamina.
Endurance workouts extend the time a player can run, sprint, change direction, and keep movement control.
Speed endurance is like sprint training except the repetitions are longer and recovery periods are shorter.
Try these soccer-specific endurance drills:
Dribbling and Running
Dribble the ball down the field, leave it, then run the back to your starting point as fast as possible. Next, run back to the ball and dribble it back to the start.
Rest for a minute or two, then repeat the drill. Dribble, run, run, dribble. This will help your endurance and dribbling skills.
Running Around the Pitch
This exercise focuses on changing actions fast. You’re training your body to adjust to the various physical demands that occur in a soccer match.
Run around the pitch at different speeds. Start with full speed, then slow to a jog for the next side. Increase to a medium speed, then use full speed for the final side. Repeat.
Most people thing flexibility means you can touch your toes. But it’s much more than that. Flexibility in sports refers to a range of motion.
Flexibility training releases tightness in muscle groups. This results in a better range of motion.
Increased range of motion improves speed and agility. It lengthens leg stride. A longer stride means quick, agile direction changes on the soccer field.
There are three types of stretches that improve flexibility.
- Static Stretching
Targets a specific muscle by holding a position for 15-60 seconds.
- Dynamic Stretching
Moves in and out of a position with a gentle bouncing motion.
- Active Isolated Stretching
Moves a joint through a complete range of motion, pauses, then repeats from the starting point.
It’s easier to get players to stretch if they understand flexibility affects their performance.
Speed Training Drills and More
Las Vegas Sports Performance has personal training, injury prevention, and student-athlete programs. You’ll find the comprehensive soccer training you need to be ready for the pitch!
Contact Las Vegas Sports Performance to get soccer training that will make you better in every aspect of the game.