Soccer could be a bit intimidating to learn at the beginning, especially if you are playing with or against better players …
… In this Post, I’ll help you understand how hard/easy is it to learn and master soccer and how to be able to improve your skills and become a better player!
How long does it take to become good at soccer?
As with everything else in life when it comes to learning a new skill, sport, or just about anything there are so many factors to consider.
You also have to define “good” at soccer. Ask yourself do you want to be good enough for a pick up game on the weekends, or good enough to compete in a league.
For a straightforward answer, give yourself nine months of dedicated practice and you’ll be crossing over the average Joe in a pick up game. And this is if you teach yourself. Lessons with a coach will speed up the time in almost half.
Consider your physical abilities as is today. If you can’t run or have never kicked a soccer ball before, then maybe add another few months to those nine.
However, if you have some background with sports, or are somewhat physically fit, then you’ll have an easier time picking up this demanding sport.
At most, expect a year of dedicated training to be “good.”
How can you teach yourself to play soccer?
Books, training DVDs, online videos, the possibilities for quality content is endless. A simple Google search for “how to teach yourself to play soccer” will return millions of hits.
YouTube alone is a gold mine for high quality content.
The only major issue with all this content is it can be overwhelming. It’s tempting to want to try everything you come across, as you should eventually. First, focus on videos for beginners. When you get the basics down, then move onto more advanced techniques.
Unfortunately, you don’t know what you don’t know. What that means is how would you know what you should be doing first. Do yourself a favor and watch or read as much as you can before getting outside and practicing.
The more you learn about the sport the less confusing it will all be. You’ll get a better understanding for where you should start.
Training DVDs will be your best option. Although they are not a total coach replacement, they are designed by coaches who know how to teach soccer. It takes the guesswork out of how to create an effective training program.
Online videos, YouTube in particular, offer more content and variety with varying opinions all for free. The downside is there is no specific order. The training is all over the place. Look for websites that offer online training.
Books are great if you prefer to read, but considering it is better to watch videos for the visual cues you might want to stick with online videos. Blogs on the other hand are still effective training tools.
How can you learn soccer fast?
The fastest way to learn anything is through discipline. You’ll need it so you won’t skip practice sessions.
Learning soccer will be difficult. It’s not impossible to learn, but it will take hard work and dedication to getting better.
An easy way to go about all this is to assign a day for different skills. Shooting, passing, dribbling, etc.
Or, if you have time try to put multiple skills on one day.
Rather than just kick the ball around aimlessly, try to get each practice session a goal. Practice dribbling around cones or shoot the ball at a wall so it comes back after each shot. Give some thought into each time you get out on the field.
The fastest way to learn soccer is to play a game. An actual match will test your skills and abilities since you will have real-time feedback on your performance. You’ll learn right away where you need to improve.
However, if you are unable to play a match for whatever reason, then you should focus on being intentional with your training.
Not that there’s anything wrong with playing just for fun, but you’ll continue to play with bad habits unless you try to get the basics down first.
Playing a game will push you to perform better, and in return make you a better player faster.
If you are lucky enough to have a partner to train with then you should practice drills that will involve them. Having another player will force you to improve your technique. It’s the closest you’ll get to playing a match.
How complicated are soccer rules?
Rule wise, soccer is not a difficult sport understand . Here’s a quick rundown:
- Matches are played in two halves of 45 minutes each. 15 minute halftime.
- Each team can have a minimum of 11 players on the field – including the goalkeeper. (Typical rules for sanctioned matches, pickup games can be played with less.)
- The goalkeeper is the only player allowed to touch the ball with their hands.
- The whole ball must pass the goal line for it to count as a goal.
- Players that commit fouls receive yellow cards or red cards depending on severity. Red cards are automatic ejections from the game, while two yellows equal a red card.
- If a ball goes out of play off an opponent in either of the side lines then it is given as a throw in. If it goes out of play off an attacking player on the base line then it is a goal kick. If it comes off a defending player it is a corner kick.
Offside rules are always tricky in sports. A player will be considered offsided when in front of the last defender when the pass is played to them. Each side will have a line across to determine when they are in play.
If you catch a pass before all defenders are past the play line, then you will be considered offside.
The rules of soccer are not complicated. Simply get the ball past the goalkeeper. Just be sure all defenders are across the line first.
When should you start playing soccer?
There’s no better time to start then now. However, soccer is a demanding sport. A high amount of walking, running, sprinting, and jumping is involved.
You don’t need to be a professionally trained athlete to start. It helps to be somewhat physically fit to not only perform well but to not injure yourself.
In case you’ve got a kid, I’ve knew some people who got their kids started at the age of 3 and they did just fine!
However, if it is for you, a good option is to join a beginners league. Fortunately, leagues run all year long.
You have the option of outdoor and indoor leagues. No need to worry about bad weather if you can find an indoor league.
How long should you practice soccer a day?
If you want to get good fast, aim for 1.5-2 hours a day, a few times a week. You’ll definitely need to get some rest in between training days since at first your legs will be killing you.
As previously mentioned, soccer is a demanding sport. Not only should you focus on different drills and skills, you should also build your endurance.
Try to train for endurance, not just speed. You’ll spend a lot of time running the field back and forth more so than sprinting.
Increase the amount of miles you run every week.
Skills you should focus on the most …
Passing is the number one skill you should focus on. This skill is vital to an efficient team. All players on the field will have to pass, so it makes sense to practice doing it as much as possible.
Getting the ball across the field fast and to the right spot at the right time takes serious skill. Players without this ability run the risk of having constant turnovers.
The next most important skill to focus on is dribbling. If you can master ball control, then you can instantly become a threat on the field.
Just like passing, dribbling is vital for getting the ball down the field efficiently.
Shooters will want to spend a lot of time dribbling so they can get past defenders to set up for the perfect shot.
Goalkeepers have their own set of specific skills and drills they must focus on, but for the most part all players should focus on these skills in that order.
What’s the easiest soccer position to start with as a beginner?
The easiest soccer position for a beginner is forward. Their only goal is to get the ball downfield and shoot.
Any defensive position should typically be left to strong, or experienced players. Weak inexperienced players will be passed through by any skill level of offensive players.
Does juggling help you become a better soccer player?
Juggling will improve your foot-eye coordination, focus, concentration, and discipline which will all transfer over to soccer.
Players who practice juggling are able to translate this ability with the first touch of the ball. Some coaches argue that first touch in soccer is the most important skill to master. They believe if players fail at first touches then the rest of the game falls apart.
Although you won’t see players juggling the ball during playing, most of the athleticism and technical ability involved with juggling will transfer over to a real match.
Final Thoughts …
Hope this post has given you enough helpful information to start your soccer journey! At the end of the day, the most important thing is to start as soon as possible …
… Practicing on a regular, preferably daily, basis is what will make you learn faster and become a better player over time!
Finally, I highly invite you to learn about these 25 reasons why I think soccer is the best sport ever!