Mental focus enhances your soccer performance.
The basis for all mental focus is positive talk. It is the realization that we can achieve, if we
Start by letting the player know that when they say,
"I can't do it", they are reinforcing the negative.
Use this phrase for mental focus.
"If you say you can't, then you won't ...
If you say you can, then you just might."
The player usually chooses to try and when they succeed they realize they have the power to choose
the positive outcomes. The player is now starting to learn the basics of mental focus.
The soccer performance then moves to a new level.
These choices are towards the sport, but can and will flow over into life's experiences in general.
This will help the player help themselves by opening up creative ideas to approaching the sport and life.
As a coach you also have to have FUN.
This will show that although the players are learning and you
are helping them grow, it is a pleasure.
4-5 years olds
To help develop eye/foot/hand co-ordination, try using a
variety of different ball substitutes.
A balloon will help get the young player in the correct
positions and increase the accuracy of gaining space, in
other words to be there when the ball gets there, but also
to be in the "proper" position to head, kick, or even chest it.
Although I don't recommend that children even up to 10 years
of age head a ball. It is important that they know and learn
and develop the correct techniques.
These techniques should all be learnt from a very early age.
Also consider using the following equipment; soft rubber "gym" balls, foam rubber balls, partially
inflated size 3 soccer balls.
This will help develop different skills and skill sets.
Try and incorporate your mental performance plans at the beginning of the season. This will help
with the overall coaching experience, and you can get more help from the Basic Coaching Program
It is important to get to know your players, their
personalities, their ways of thinking, their self awareness, and their self talk.
There are a few tools at your disposal and you don't have to
be a psychologist to understand that sometimes a player will
just be too negative about themselves as a result of their relationships with others.
On the other hand, you might have an individual who has an over-inflated ego. These are the rare
Just try to involve these individuals in roles so that they can become leaders under pressure.
It is important to find out about "ALL" the players, their motivations and how they relate to the
game. While doing
this, please remember that most just want to play and have
fun with their friends while they look cool in a uniform and
get to have great exercise.
Most players want the team feeling and it doesn't matter
whether they always win as long as they have performed
well. This is especially true with female athletes.
* For a brief limited time I
will make a mental focus document available for FREE for your copy email me
ask for the "Mental Prep Questionaire *
You are dealing with athletes and players who are committed to the sport. They have and fun and realize that they
have more fun under competitive circumstances. They are in tune with a variety of aspects of the mind game.
However you have come across a few who are taken out of their game by playing into the hands,
hearts, and minds of others. These could be the opposing players, their own team mates and the people on the
Most importantly it is what the coach said or didn't say before the game or at half time. This is
where your job becomes most important. The ground work has to be laid at the beginning of the season.
Gaining mental strategies needs to be a part of your seasonal plan in order to have significant
affects thoughout the competitions during the season.
Focus on building a core of values with the ideas below at
In the Zone.
Have FUN getting to know and understanding your players.
The best of all is appreciating how much you will also grow, in stature and scope.
For more information go to Mental Focus Links.