Being at a variety of fields while other teams are practicing and preparing for a match is both a blessing and a curse. A blessing because I get a chance to see lots of goalkeepers showing their skills – a curse because cringe when I see keepers without any warmup jumping between the posts while their team “shoots”.
A mistake I constantly see in youth soccer is when a team has very detailed warmup and practice activities and the keepers have no lead-up activities and just stand by watching the team practice. Or they end up tossing the ball between each other and then when the coach is ready, he tells them to get in the net. And coaches get mad at their keepers when they are not ready and make mistakes. Many coaches think shooting drills help a keeper….and most times they are correct, but only after the proper ground work has been laid for the keeper prior to the shooting activity. Why is it that preventable errors are made during these shooting activities? Namely, because they haven’t been prepared and warmed up properly. This warmup helps the keeper prepare for success and provide repetitions and game-like examples – building confidence and muscle memory for match success.
If a pre-match warmup consists of giving up goal after goal, it doesn’t boost the confidence of the keeper nor the teams confidence in the keeper. Warmup should be challenging, but as the match gets closer, less and less effort should be made to score. Rule #1 is never, EVER, end on a goal. Always end on a clean save. Goalkeeper training in VA with J4K will show keepers proper activities to put themselves in the proper frame of mind for top performance and build confidence along the way. Give us a call for your free session today!