Monday, 29 October 2012

Shooting a Soccer Ball While Running

It would be great if for every shot we had enough time to stop it, and set it up like a penalty kick, but soccer doesn't work that way. There are many times where you will shoot the ball while running, even at full speed. Most players don't think about it, but shooting while running is a lot harder and somewhat different to a taking a regular soccer shot. Technique varies so it is important for you to the proper technique for shooting while running.

Kicking the ball while running is an essential skill in the game of soccer. The ability to accurately pass and shoot while on the run is what separates good players from average ones. Unlike many sports, soccer requires nearly continuous running from its players. Learning how to powerfully and accurately kick the ball while running or dribbling is an essential tool for forwards, mid-fielders and defenders alike when the send the ball toward the opponent's goal. According to the web resource Expert Football, all soccer kicks come in two varieties: ground kicks that run along the field and air-born volleys. While it is possible to make either type of kick while running, the ground kick is the most common running kick because of its increased accuracy and versatility.

How to Shoot while Running
Following are some steps and methods which will surely help to improve shooting while running in the field.

Step 1

Approach the soccer ball with a running stride and mentally plan your kick in advance by deciding where on the ball you will need to kick to send it in the required direction. Run toward the ball until you are 3 to 5 feet away from the ball.

Step 2

Leap toward the ball as you approach so that your kicking foot bends up and back, nearly touching your gluteus muscles. Land your planting foot on the ground so that it is immediately behind and to the side of the soccer ball, and lean forward slightly. Begin the kick by bringing the knee of your kicking leg forward in "V" shape, and kicking the ball with you foot in a sudden snapping motion.

Step 3

Aim the big toe of your kicking foot so that it hits just below the ball's mid-section. Relax your legs and lower torso completely as you kick through the ball. Perform a mental visualization technique by imagining that your body is shattering a pane of glass as you kick the ball, allowing you to mentally propel yourself further down the field during your kick.

Step 4

English: Zarek Valentin kicking a soccer ball

Execute the long-range ground kick several times during the soccer game, or practice until you are comfortable with the accuracy and distance of your kick. For short-range kicks, gently tap the ball forward with your toe as you run in a process called dribbling.

Shooting While Running Technique

It is important that you follow the soccer shooting technique exactly except for these changes which you implement if you are running:

1. Place Foot Moved Up

When taking a shot normally, you should place your place foot even with the ball. When you are running it is vital that you place it in front of the ball. Making this change alone, will make shooting while running much easier.

2. Smaller Hop

When you are running, you don't want to lose any momentum that your speed brings. Take a smaller hop, and then explode into the ball.

Stride to the Ball

Always try to notice players attempt to shoot while running and  see the following things:
  • Short stutter steps that greatly slow the player.
  • Long strides that mess up the player.
  • Normal running, but then changed stride length when the ball is near.
One thing is common with all these mistakes; the player is greatly slowed down. What should take a few seconds can go on for 6 or 7 seconds? This gives defenders and goalies much needed time to block the shot. Learning to run naturally and strike a ball is hard, but very necessary to getting a good shot off.

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