Detlev Brueggemann is an expert in the area of soccer and soccer training. His experience and knowledge has been featured in numerous soccer training guides. He has worked as club coach for well-known German clubs such as Borussia Dortmund and VfL Bochum, and he is a FIFA Instructor since 2005. For more than 20 years he worked as Association Head Coach of the Westphalia Soccer Association in Germany. Moreover, he has been training youth soccer teams for more than 40 years.
3 PROPER EXERCISES TO IGNITE THE MOTIVATION TO PRACTICE 3.1 General Aspects
In general, there are three basic types of activities. All of them are needed in training, however, each for a different purpose.
- Small-sided games - Complex exercises - Simple drills
Each type of activity provides various learning opportunities based on specific characteristics. In order to determine which type is most appropriate for a particular training goal, we have to first analyze the main differences between each kind of exercise.
- Two predetermined and distinguished teams (i.e. 2 vs. 2 on two goals) - Specific rules regarding goal-scoring and restarts after a break in play - Preestablished game duration
- More than one player is involved in each movement - Sequencing for a longer activity duration - Connected actions as they occur in the game - Improves decision making (players recognizing alternatives) - Consideration of movements as required in a game - Motivational for players - Predetermined start and end
Simple exercises, drills
- Short actions - Predetermined movements - Predetermined start and finish of each repetition - Selected technical, tactical or physical components - Single or partner tasks
Each of these different activities has to be accepted as a suitable learning opportunity. However, when deciding which of them to implement in practice, there are two crucial aspects to be considered:
(1) The duration players can continuously exercise and (2) the number of skills which are being improved in addition to the specific learning goal of the activity.
For example, if two players play 1 vs. 1 between two goals for a specific amount of time in order to learn how to beat the opponent by a particular feint, then both players are given an environment to improve feinting. Additionally, however, both players will also train shooting, dribbling, recognition of the defending opponents' intentions, the direction and timing of when to beat the opponent and transition. Although this player would also improve their ability to perform a feint simply by dribbling towards and around a cone and shooting, passing the cone by executing the movement of the feint and scoring after having "beaten" the cone does not present opportunities to improve tactical and physical abilities simultaneously, as the aforementioned exercise does.
Thus, it is the learning process achieved by each exercise that should be considered