How To Structure Practice Sessions

In general, the technical development of youth soccer players follows a distinct progression from the first practice session through to the live game. With this in mind, coaches should develop their practice sessions using the model below. Keep in mind there are many ways to reach the same objective - all players learning and having fun!

Beginning: Teaching & Fundamentals (Individual Work)
  • Introduce concepts. 
  • No pressure from the opponent. 
  • Progress to executing the technique at top speed. 
  • Players work individually. 
  • Players set individual targets for improvement. 
Middle: Game-Related Skills (1 v. 1, 2 v. 2)
  • Reinforce concepts. 
  • Introduction of pressure from an opponent. 
  • Incrementally added additional pressure. 
  • Players experience passive pressure from the opponent. 
End: Game Conditions (Larger Groups, Entire Team)
  • Content restrictions added to emphasize techniques in game conditions. 
  • Short-sided and odd-numbered games. 
  • Possible restrictions include the number of touches allowed, number of passes required for a point and ways players can score goals.