The sooner you will start the better you get, this is not only for football but for every dynamic of life. Football drills can’t get any better for you if you have decided at a very early age to have a career in football.
One thing you need to figure out as a beginner is the position of American football you wish to play in your professional career. There are distinctive football drills for each of the positions, so it’s more of a compulsion to select the position of playing before proceeding with the Youth Football Drills to Practice at Home.
As per research and the feedback from former players and coaches a child needs to practice a drill at least 75 times before he could learn it. This is only about learning it, mastering a skill requires a whole different level of practice and dedication.
For holistic development of the skill set of a child a coach and coaching sessions are of prime utility. But one needs to understand that attending a coaching session of 1 hour in a day isn’t going to take you anywhere in your career.
For this very reason, we have come up with the Youth Football Drills to Practice at Home.
The regular practice of the following drills will ensure the holistic development of your child.
Dynamic Warm-ups from Positional Stance
The idea is to loosen up the muscles of your body and prepare them for the real test. In your backyard start with doing 10 reps of each exercise. There’s no specific exercise for this routine you can do jogging, reverse up and downs, push-ups burpees, etc. The thing which is to be kept in mind and which is the crux behind doing this is to return to the same positional stance after each exercise.
Start slow initially, don’t put your body under a lot of stress all of a sudden. Increase the load on the body after 5 minutes, you can even change your positional stance after some time. This drill is to increase the general endurance level in the athletic before starting with the position-specific drills.
Offense: Bird Dog
It is a hardcore blocking drill. It will make you learn the basics of blocking. As a player of the offensive line block is a skill which is expected as a primary skill, every player of the offensive line irrespective of the position must know to block properly and effectively. This drill is named Bird Dog because the difference positional stances involved in this drill is similar to the position of a hunter while shooting a bird. Watch the video for a better understanding.
The three steps involved in this drill are Step, Guns, Flippers. Let us discuss each one of them.
- Step- This is a 45 degree step back while altering the feet at the same time. The shoulders are kept square to the hips, and at the same level to the ground. The player needs to keep his head up and alert, vigilant.
- Guns- It implies the positioning of your fist on your hips, just like the position when a gunman draws a pistol from his waist.
- Flippers- It is the action of driving your fist in the forward direction towards the chest of the opponent to present a solid block.
Defense: The Take Off drill
As soon as any play is started the defenders must move quickly from their stance towards the ball, or towards the opponent as per the situation. One common thing is the Takeoff, a defender must possess an explosive take-off ability to cover a longer distance in split seconds. You must develop fast reflexes and instinctive movement ability to gain an edge over the opponents.
This drill is aimed at bringing your core lower towards the ground to increase your stability. Moreover, it works on the development of the leg muscles to enable you to dominate your opponent with strength. While maintaining a 2, 3, or 4-point stance, explode forwards towards the opponent while keeping your core low. Your hands and head should be pointing in an upward direction. After this step runs for five yards or so to work on endurance level. Refer to the video below for better understanding.
A brief look at some other drills that can be of great help for your child’s skill development.
- Shuffle and Switch– aimed at bringing ball security while on the move. The player has to move hurriedly through an obstacle course made of sandbags while keeping the ball in hand. The player will have to make jump cuts, accelerate forward, move inward while maintaining the speed.
- Sack drill- this drill is focused on maintaining tackling efficiency and works on foot movement. The idea is to put a combination of several obstacles in the path of a defensive lineman and make him dodge each one of them.
- Backpedal Shuffle Break on Ball: it works on increasing the footwork and developing the ball-hawking instincts of a player. The agility is also covered in this drill.
- The Middle Drill- to improve the catching abilities of a player while he is on the move. It is very important to drill for a quarterback. The quarterback will learn to make inch-perfect passes.
- Cone drill- even before working on the position-specific drills a child needs to work on his conditioning and agility. This drill serves this very purpose.
Doing drills at home alone will be sufficient for the overall development as a player?
If you believe you can provide the appropriate training environment to your child at your place then why not! But as a thumb rule, most people prefer sending their child to some training facility under a trained professional. Because they know how to train a child based on his potential.
At what age to start training?
Again I would say there’s never too early and never too late. We have seen athletes starting very late in their careers and still being able to make it to the highest level. Ao whenever you have made your mind to play football, it’s good for you.
Doing how many reps of each exercise would be sufficient?
There is no hard and fast rule to perform a specified number of reps. You can set the reps as per your time availability, the number of drills you are planning to perform, and the experience you have in the game. Still doing 5-10 reps of each exercise is considered as a decent number.