"What's wrong with my soccer shooting technique? Why does the ball keep going over?" If you've ever had that happen to you then today is your lucky day. Learn how to work on your power shot from distance, your shot with accuracy from up close and any other kind of dip, curve or knuckle you can possible think of.
If you've ever watched a golfer hit a drive far and long they aren't hitting the ball as hard as they possibly can. Why? Well they know if they just hit it all out their technique will suffer and the shot's accuracy and effectiveness will go way down. A shot in soccer is the same, sacrifice just a touch of power to make sure the technique is spot on. From keeping yourself balanced, to your arm position and of course the contact with your foot being a great finisher is as much about your technique than how hard you hit it. Learn all the soccer shooting technique you'll ever need to know, then add the power as you start to get the hang of it.
1. Land on our shooting foot! - Try this at home for second, try sweeping the floor with the bottom of your foot then land on that same foot before the other foot touches the ground. This is what we are aiming for when shooting for power, put all of your momentum into the shot as if you're being knocked over sideways so you have to land on the same foot you just shot with.
2. Aim middle height - wait what? I thought I'm supposed to pick the corners? Pick a side to shoot then aim about half way up. Not top corner or bottom corner exactly, so if the ball gets away from you a little it will drift high perfectly to the top corner or perfectly to the bottom corner. Don't make me remind you about the importance of putting it on frame.
3. Point that foot and toe down - Technique is everything and while you approach hitting the ball with power and follow through make sure your toes and foot are flexed and pointing to the ground the entire time. Don't bring your foot up towards your leg as you follow through, keep it pointed until the absolute last second when you need to land on it.
4. Fall over the ball - You should be be putting all of your momentum forward as to fall over the ball as you strike it. This will give it power and keep it from gliding over the goal.
5. Hit the lower third of the ball - Aim under the ball but not so much that you are hitting your foot in the ground. Hit low and aim low to guarantee the shot is tough for the keeper to deal with and of course on target.
1. Middle of the foot - Ahead of the heel and behind the big toe bone aim for the middle of the inside of your foot. This soft spot allows you to push the ball accurately, make sure to come under the ball just a bit hitting the ball on the bottom third of it.
2. Both feet please - Get good at hitting it with the inside of both of your feet. You will limit so many goal scoring opportunities if you can't tap balls coming in from both wings with the correct foot. Stick to fundamentals when using your non-dominant foot before you add too much power behind it. Increase your soccer shooting technique with both feet to give yourself more chances to get on the score sheet.
3. Solid contact - No gentle touches here, hit the ball like you mean it! Keep the right technique and firmly hit the ball like you're trying to score and not like you're hoping not to miss.
4. Power from your momentum - If you're on a sprint or a jog approaching the ball remember the quicker you can have your body moving in a forward motion the less you will have to give the shot a big leg swing, use that to your advantage.
5. One time, one time! - If you're inside the box and have chance to hit that accuracy shot one time do it! Catching a keeper off guard is as important as hitting the ball where you want with the right technique.
1. Long strides - As you approach the ball you want to take three of four long strides of a couple yards each. This will help with the power and technique necessary to hit the ball. So don't shuffle your feet 30 times before you hit it, keep it wide and open, this will help your soccer shooting technique.
2. Inside of the foot - You're aiming for inside of foot right on the bone part just before where your big toe begins. Open up your foot at the last moment before shooting and wind up like it's a power shot and just use the different part of your foot just before you hit it.
3. Posture Up - Unlike other shots where you are leaning forward as you shoot with your weight over the ball the knuckle ball technique requires your back to be straight up. The run up can have your back leaning forward a little but as you shoot you should be moving your back in a straight up position.
4. Aim Secondary - Because of the ball swerving all over the place the last thing you want to do is bail the keeper out and miss the goal. Move where you normally aim fo ra shot a little more on frame and aim conservatively to guarantee the shot on goal.
5. Run Up - I've seen it effectively done both ways, both straight run up and one at about 30 degrees off to the side. So this is really a preference to the shooter, try both a few times and see which feels most comfortable for you. Keep your run up on your toes and avoid having your heels touch the ground. This will give you a spring when you hit the ball and also add to your power.
1. Lift the ball - Really get under the ball, can't stress this enough. Hit under the ball more than usual and try and give it some top spin.
2. Land on shooting foot - To get the right amount of power you'll need to land on the foot you shot with.
3. Lean over the ball - For that up and down dipping motion we want make sure to get your momentum over the ball.
4. Long strides - Long approaching strides of 2-3 yards each will help you get that pop under the ball
5. Plant foot - Make sure that plant foot is pointing towards where you want to shoot.
1. Hit the outside of the ball - That's right you are aiming at the outside edge of the ball with either the inside or outside of your foot. To get the right spin you want to start hitting just under the ball and swing your foot from front to back along the side.
2. Approach it from an angle - Avoid approaching the ball straight on, if you're hitting the ball on it's right side you want to approach it at a 45 degree angle from the left side at least. This will allow you to get some good whip on the ball.
3. Curl your foot around it - If you're ever spun a basketball on your finger you know you need to hit it from front to back while curing your hand along the side to get that spin going. The same thing is true when hitting a soccer ball with your foot, always follow through completely because the curve comes from how you wrap it around at the end not the beginning of your leg swing.
4. Bottom part of the big toe - The part of the foot you want to aim for when first making contact with the ball is located just below the big toe and just above the balls of your feet. As you go lower down your foot it will become more difficult to get the power and whip on the ball necessary to curve it. Practice standing still and just getting the right spot on your foot and watch the difference of the ball spinning and find the sweet spot.
5. Right amount of power please! - Like every effective shot you need to combine the right amount of technique with the right amount of power. Technique alone will only get you so far and all power will have you searching in the bushes for your ball for hours. Start off with medium power and full technique to get some confidence and watch the ball start to curve. Eventually as you become more comfortable increase the power based on how close you are to goal while still maintaining the right soccer shooting technique.
Actually it should be even MORE technically sound (at least when you're starting out) then your dominant foot! Why? Well sometimes with our dominant and usually more powerful foot we can get away with just smacking the ball as hard as we can sometimes and it working out. When your foot isn't as strong like your non-dominant one sacrificing that technique for power just won't work out. You don't have the power to just hit it so your technique has to exactly by the book to get something out of it.
Here are some friendly tips to consider when working on your soccer shooting technique for your non-dominant foot:
1. Stand, then run - We need to walk before we crawl so start doing the technique standing still, then approach it with a step then jog and then full sprint.
2. Fundamentals - Stick to the fundamentals no matter the type of shot. There are some fundamentals that are true for all types of shots then you're going to need to lean on. Plan foot pointed towards where you want to shoot, keep your ankle locked and solid, head down, swing through the middle/bottom third of the ball, land on your shooting foot (especially for power), keep your eye focused on the ball the entire way through and put in the work.
3. Don't get frustrated - Whenever we are learning something new there is going to be some frustrating moments early on. When you've played a game like soccer for so long and feel are pretty good at it then it can be humbling to learn a new skill and be so bad at it in the beginning. Stick to the basics and get 50-100 reps in a day and the results will come.
If you're looking for more information or trying to get an edge on your shot over everyone else, have a look at this new article about a proven Shooting Method for Soccer Kicking Evaluation.
1. Eye on the prize - With all the other distractions on the field (opponent, goalkeeper, net, weather etc) for one time strikes put all of your focus and energy on the incoming ball and don't worry about everything else.
2. Quality contact - While you're trying to get the accuracy just right and place it in the perfect spot or beat the keeper all that should matter is making strong quality contact with the ball. Hit the center of the ball, lock your foot and put it low and hard on frame, everything else comes secondary.
3. Use the weight of the ball - If you see the ball is being passed or crossed to you with a lot of speed on it don't worry about having such a big and hard wind up. There is enough momentum and power on the ball already, all you have to do is make good contact and push it where it needs to go.
4. Aim down - If the ball is coming in from the air, or bouncing towards you on a half volley remember to always aim low towards the bottom third of the goal. Even if the ball hits the ground before it crosses the line a couple times it will give the keeper issues and you will increase your chances of the ball hitting the frame.
5. Trust it, deception over power - I know we want to rip the mesh apart when we strike the ball but reduce your wind up and just guide the ball towards goal. The one time shot has the most important ingredient already to beat a goalkeeper and that is the deception and quick release of the shot. Ask any keeper they would rather deal with a powerful shot while they are set and ready then one at half speed when they don't know its coming and aren't yet full set. Soccer shooting technique is part of it but deceiving the goalie can't be matched.