Individual physical training of a footballer: 9-12 years

Starting today’s article, we have to go back to the previous material for a moment, in which we focused on the individual physical preparation of players aged 6-8 years. To move on to the next years, let’s summarize what has been presented so far.

In the previous article

What to train in individual years:

  • 6 years : motor coordination (kinesthetic differentiation, synchronization of movements in time), basic movement patterns, player activation.
  • 7 years : motor coordination (kinesthetic differentiation, synchronization of movements in time), basic movement patterns, player activation and agility.
  • 8 years : motor coordination (kinesthetic differentiation, timing of movements, adequacy of movements, reaction to signals), basic movement patterns, player activation and agility.

If you have not read the previous article, and you want to know more details about training for 6 – 8 years old, click on this link: Individual physical training of a football player 6 – 8 years old .

How to train at the age of 9?

Today we are moving to the next age group, 9 – 12 years old. Some of the elements will be repeated, so they will only be listed, while those football training aspects that will be new will be described in more detail.

So what should we emphasize when training individually with a player at the age of 9:

  • Motor coordination: adequacy of movements, reaction to signals, rhythm
  • Basic movement patterns
  • Agility
  • Oxygen training

New elements of training in this age category that require a short comment are: rhythmic and aerobic training.

Rhythm is the ability to determine the appropriate range of motion for a given situation and to coordinate the rhythm of movements according to the situation the player sees or feels. Simply put, we want the movements of the player we are looking at to be smooth , not chaotic, disturbing to move. In the case of rhythmics, we have a wide range of exercises that we can use. These are, for example, all kinds of skips (A, C, crossover), running the ball in a slalom between cones or poles, running through hurdles while maintaining the rhythm of the run. 

Oxygen training, as the name suggests, is aimed at developing the aerobic capacity of the athlete. Thanks to the appropriate oxygen support, the footballer is able to withstand the pace of the match for the entire 90 minutes, and will also regenerate faster. This type of training is often associated with monotonous and slow running. Nothing could be more wrong, it doesn’t have to be that way. In the case of young footballers, aerobic training should take the form of small games on the pitch. The role of the coach here is the appropriate manipulation of the game time, the size of the pitch and the number of players. We can also carry out this type of training at home using, for example, ball mastery exercises and doing them for a sufficiently long time. For example, below are two Ball Mastery exercises to be performed with the right and left feet.

Training program for a ten-year-old

Another item on the agenda is the 10-year-old timetable. What should his physical training include:

  • Motor coordination: balance and balance, adequacy of movements, kinesthetic differentiation, reaction to signals, rhythmics
  • Basic movement patterns
  • Agility
  • Oxygen training

As we enter the so-called The “golden age” for the development of a footballer is that the range of exercises in motor coordination is increasing. There is another element, i.e. balance and balance . We can divide balance into two types: static and dynamic. Static balance (maintaining a vertical posture while the legs are on a narrow or limited ground, e.g. a beam), dynamic balance (maintaining balance while moving without using additional points of support). Good balance and balance are essential for us when running, and even more so when changing its direction, when the body is subjected to great forces. As an example of exercise, we can use all kinds of jumps both on one foot or on one leg. These jumps can be performed in various directions: right – left, front – back, with a rotation of 180 degrees.

Physical training at the age of 11

For players aged 11 years, their training should include the following:

  • Motor coordination: balance and balance, adequacy of movements, kinesthetic differentiation
  • Basic movement patterns
  • Agility
  • Oxygen training
  • Flexibility

When we talk about flexibility training, we obviously mean muscle flexibility . As most of you know, stiff and cramped muscles are the first step towards injury. During movement, the forces exerted on the body are very great. Therefore, muscles must have a certain degree of flexibility to absorb these forces and keep us healthy. By not caring about their flexibility, we gradually contribute to their worse work and expose ourselves to more and more injuries. So how do we work on the flexibility of our muscles? There are several methods. The first is the use of foam rollers in training for massage. The massage can be performed immediately before training, but then it is performed a little faster to stimulate circulation in the muscles. We can also use rollers after training. Then we perform the massage a bit slower in order to relax our muscles. Below is an example of a calf massage:

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