Coaching little kids, especially in their early childhood years, can test your creativity and patience. Though there’s no pressure on you to create star players nor to win games and competitions, your worst enemy will be in keeping these kids interested. With low attention spans, temper tantrums, and fragile bones and muscles, there are many factors that you have to consider when creating the appropriate U5 soccer drills.
Kids also bring a lot of energy and enthusiasm in your practices, which forces you to bring the same level of energy to the practices, as well. Kids will respond to your U5 soccer drills if you make them seem like they’re just fun, little games.
Here are Two U5 soccer drills that will help you bring fun and learning to your soccer practices:
The first drill is called “Coach Says.” It’s a very simple drill. Borrowed from the game of Simon Says, the kids just have to do the things that you tell them, if you say “Coach First,” to your instructions. Give them one ball each and whoever makes a mistake will have to sit on the sides until the game is finished. This “time out” will be torture for little kids who want nothing else but to play with the rest of his friends, teaching him not to make the mistake next time.
An example of a command would be, “Coach says dribble the ball towards the coach,” or “Coach says run to the goal and make a shot.” You can use any command that will make them practice their basic skills, such as passing, dribbling, and shooting. You can also incorporate the warm up and stretching exercises in this drill.
Crabs and Surfers
The second drill is called Crabs and Surfers. Have the kids line up shoulder to shoulder. Place a cone or a flag about 15 yards away from the line. Give them one ball each. They have to dribble their ball to the flag and back to the line as fast as possible. Stand about 7-8 yards from the line and tell them that they are Surfers and you are the Crab.
You then have to act like a crab and go down on all fours. Tell the kids that if you get to tag anyone who’s dribbling towards and from the flag, then they will become crabs, too. This drill will make them feel like they’re only playing a game but it actually practices their dribbling, speed, and change of direction.