After a very hectic fall season it was great to have break over the Thanksgiving week. As with everything in 2020, the holiday week was very different from the way it usually is. My extended family usually spends a lot of time together over this period but that wasn’t possible this year so I had a lot of time to work on a number of projects.
High on the list of ‘Things to Do” was completing player evaluations for three of my teams. I do individual meetings with my oldest team so I don’t write anything up for them. I’ve talked about our evaluation process in a couple of previous episodes (#168 & #255) so check those out if you’d like to hear more about what we do with those.
Sporting KC Academy Affiliate Clubs are getting ready to start a D License for some of our coaches and I’ll be one of the instructors on that course so I spent some time working on presentations for that. It will be a Blended Course with all of the classroom sessions taking place online. Only the field sessions will be in person and those won’t take place until mid March.
This week we were able to get back on the practice field but all of our sessions have to be outside since the schools have closed their facilities to outside groups. We’ve been fortunate with the weather so it’s worked out well so far. We’ll see how long that lasts but with any luck we’ll continue to have nice weather at least through the holidays.
“I’m working with a girls U13 team, that is adjusting to 11v11. At what age, if ever, do you consider giving a “classroom” session to a team. Perhaps show some short video clips and diagram player positioning and movement. Or, if not a classroom session, do you ever provide handouts to players with formations, position numbers and basic soccer definitions they can review? I find this group eager to learn, and think it could benefit them.”
Thanks for your question Ed!
I do videos for my teams that they can watch in their own time and then I can reference them during training. I’ve found this more useful than dedicated classroom sessions. The one time I will do something like a classroom session is if we have a practice canceled by weather. Otherwise, I prefer to use the time I have with the players out on the field.
The teams all have access to their games through Veo as well. There have been times that I’ve asked them to watch the game and focus on some aspect of it.
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In this Episode
As I’ve discussed before, the teams in our club play Futsal during the winter months. If you’re not familiar with Futsal, it’s a 5-a-side game with four field players and a goalkeeper. Very effective Futsal teams are able to stay very compact defensively. The session I’ll share today gives you the opportunity to coach all of the keys to playing a tight, compact defense that will be very difficult to score against.
One of the criticisms of the Play – Practice – Play methodology is that it can’t be used to train technique. I think this is a misconception and next week I’ll not only share ideas on how you can improve technique using PPP but why it’s more effective than the traditional progressive training session.