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 Great Goalkeeping Articles by Don Williams

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Staying on your feet as long as possible
By Don Williams


Keepers that do too much diving or dive when it's not necessary often suffer from poor footwork. Other times it's pure laziness. 
Some of the dangers of diving when not necessary. Increased risk of injury. Greater risk of not being able to hold a ball. Not being able to make a second save if the ball is not held.  When I'm training my keepers I ask them to keep their feet moving to the ball after a shot is taken and to stay on their feet as long as possible.

 

One way to train this concept into the keepers head is to play fairly simple balls to the left and right of the keeper and ask them to stay on their feet and "run through the ball." In other words, don't dive for a ball to the side, but instead, stay up right and after the catch is made, continue on the run through the ball and slow down only when comfortable.

 

Too many times a younger keeper will try and stop immediately after catching a ball to the side and will loose balance causing them to fall to the ground. Other times they will not hardly move the feet at all which causes them to have to dive unnecessarily.  Next time you're working with your keeper ask them to focus on moving the feet and to stay on their feet as long as possible and you'll begin to see them having greater range in the goal and to make more saves without having to dive all the time.

 

Good luck in your goalkeeper training and you can receive more GK training ideas from our ‘FUNdamental Goalkeeper’ book or by sending us your questions in care of “Don’s Dandies!”

 

Here are more great Coaching Articles from Don:

 

A Dream Comes True - The way you train is the way you play.  Never give up, dream big, dream specific and work, work, work toward your dream. Read on...

 

The Power Shot -I suspect that if your daughter is going with a proper power step but is just not getting the distance on her dives that she should that she is dragging her back foot, a common technical mistake that many young keepers make. Here is a way for your daughter to safely practice diving, the power step and lifting her back leg. Read on...

 

Specializing-   It is crucial for keepers to develop great foot skills in both dribbling and passing with both feet early on in their soccer careers. One only has to watch the any soccer game on TV to see the importance of great foot skills under pressure to see the great results of those skills and conversely, the tragic results of not having those skills. Read on...

 

The Foundations of a Championship Team - How many parents and coaches have you heard in the past yell at under 6 and under 8 children  for “not going to the ball” or “not being aggressive” or “not paying attention, stop picking flowers!”  If you are wondering if undefeated and #1 ranked Stanford reached their current lofty goal through this method ...Read on...

 

Addressing the Issue - Striking a soccer ball has been compared to a golf swing and me trying to say what is causing a specific spin on the ball without seeing the strike is like me going to a golf instructor and saying that I slice the ball, now without ever seeing me hit the ball, can you tell me why.  Any skill in life, whether it is striking a golf ball, bowling, hitting a baseball or any aspect of soccer simply takes getting expert instruction and then repeating the tasks properly thousands and thousands of times. Read on...

 

What is Besf for our Players -I believe that the first thing we have to do when coaching youth players is to ask ourselves; “what is best for them as players and more importantly as individuals?”  If we as coaches cause an 11 year old to be so upset that we drive them to crying, then something is wrong with this picture.Read on...

 

Handling Crosses Part I - Teaching keepers to deal with crosses is a multi step process. The warm-up. Always use the 6 yard box for training crosses. The keepers need this for a reference point. Lay out 5 cones around the 6. Read on...

 

Handling Crosses Part II - It is very important to remember not to be in too big of a hurry to jump through the series, every keeper learns and progresses at a different rate. Sometimes it takes a number of sessions just to get to this point in the training.Read on...

 

Handling Crosses Part III - I have found that by doing it this way Ensure that we don't kill the creativity of our players, but instead allow them to make their own decisions about how they want to try and win the game. Read on...

 

Handling Crosses Part IV - Always use the 6 yard box for training crosses. The keepers need this for a reference point. When I have 2 or more keepers, one of my favorite games to play I call "perfection". The game is simple, but forces the keepers to focus very hard on all the coaching points for handling crosses. Read on...