Soccer Shooting Like A Pro, Siiiiiiiiii!!!

Need that extra little something to get your soccer shooting where it needs to be? You did all the hard work, now just finish the ball, have you ever heard that before?  

Every shot and explanation you will ever need from power, placement, outside of the foot, knuckle ball, volley's and other trick shots to hit it like a pro.

You'll find tips and other soccer shooting techniques to help your shot make the players of the opposing team hold their breaths every time you put your head down and line one up.


Power Shot (with laces)

There are two basic shot types and several variations when considering all our soccer shooting options. The two basic shot selections are power or placement. This all depends on where you are on the field and where the keeper is. Generally if you are going for power (most likely from longer ranges) you will be hitting it with your laces. To really master soccer shooting in all of its forms it will take you thousands of reps until you find your groove so work at it but be patient.

Key things to remember when taking a power shot with your laces:

- Select your target and commit to it. Even if you feel the shot will be blocked because deflections result in lots of goals.

- Keep your head down looking at the ball.

- Plant foot needs to be about half a yard beside the ball and your plant foot should be pointing in the direction of your desired target.

- LOCK your ankle of the shooting foot (very important) you don't want your leg hitting it all relaxed resulting in wild shots or worse yet injury.

- Strike the ball in the center/bottom half of the ball.

- Follow through with your shooting foot and it should be the first foot to hit the ground after your swing.

Remember! Don't be tempted to watch and admire your shot, keep your head down, follow through and execute the fundamentals. If you strike it just right don't look up, the crowd will tell you if it went in. If you want to know more about increasing your soccer shooting power then read this in depth article that talks about The Ball Kicking Speed: A New Efficient, Performance Indicator In Youth Soccer.


Placement Shot (with inside of the foot)

Roughly used within 18 yards of the goal (more or less) look to tuck it away with the biggest surface on your foot (the inside). Now that you're close to the target your shooting technique is very much the same as hitting it with your laces but the obvious main difference is hitting it with the inside of your foot.  Plant foot half a yard beside the ball, head down, locked ankle and really swing through the middle of the ball. This is the basis for all quality soccer shooting techniques so use this with any type of shot you're considering.

Things to remember:

-LOW and to the CORNERS! This is essential, put the ball far from the keeper.

-If you're in the box try to look at the net before the ball comes your way, if you forget to then use the lines on the field to gage where you are and put it on frame.

-Don't lean back, get over the ball and make solid contact with the middle of your foot, almost like a really firm pass.

-A quick release is just as important as the placement as it can fool the keeper and get them wrong footed.


Outside of the Foot Shot

Outside of the Foot

Hitting the ball with the outside of your foot can be extremely effective for close range finishes and wingers cutting in looking to bend a ball in the far post (don't worry if you're one foot dominant this is your way of justifying hitting everything with your dominant). This takes a very high level of skill and is one of the most underrated soccer shooting techniques. To execute this shot on the run while beating the keeper takes some serious awareness and skill.

Things to remember:

-Get a good running start so your leg power doesn't need to do all the work.

-Hit underneath and on the outside edge of the ball to give it some lift and curve.

-Either aiming high or low look to execute it with a quick sharp wind up to try and fool the goalie as it can look deceptive coming off your foot to the keeper.


Knuckle Ball Shot

Knuckle Ball

Maybe a new soccer shooting technique you want to add to your game is the knuckle ball. It is an extremely high level skill when it comes to shooting and takes lots of practice. It's mainly seen off of free kicks but also appears in the run of the game off of volleys and regular long range shots on goal as well. 

The description is in its name and much like a knuckle ball in baseball the ball comes at a medium to slow speed but its effectiveness comes from the dips and swerves it makes in the air on the way to goal. Oh and if it happens by fluke just smile and nod, smile and nod.

Things to remember:

-Technique is everything here, sacrifice power for hitting the ball in the right place on the inside of your foot.

-Keep you foot flexed outward and not loose, hit the middle to bottom of the ball.

-Use the momentum of your run to help generate the power then slow down a couple strides before you hit it.

-Aim safely on goal and let the knuckling beat the goalie, don't try and hit it an inch from the post and risk it not hitting the net at all. Its effectiveness is not in where it goes on net but it's knuckling.


Volleys

Full Volley

Full Volley

Catching a ball on a full volley can be as exciting as anything in the game (sorry halftime trapeze artists). Timing, accuracy, balance and awareness all come into play in that split second that you decide to hit a ball on the volley. Volleys come up in at all sorts of angles and opportunities so you have to be creative with your timing, choice of surface and awareness of this elite soccer shooting skill.

Things to remember:

-Keep your eyes on the ball the entire time, the crowd will tell you if it went in.

-Lock your ankle by pointing your toe down all the way even after your follow through.

-Solid contact is more important than anything here.

-Don't let your teammates hurt you in the pile on after the goal!

Half Volley

Half Volley

Take a second from celebrating your volley goal and be ready to hit a half volley. The only difference here is the ball will be coming with a bit of a bounce to it anywhere from an inch or two to a foot or two.

Things to remember:

-Try to hit the middle to top part of the ball. Balls on a hop like this shouldn't be hit under the ball, it will force them to sky over the net.

-Keep your eye on the ball the entire time.

-Get your timing just right and try and get your body to lean over the ball.

Side Volley

Side Volley

Okay Zidane this may be the most difficult of all volleys to hit. The balls coming across your body, you're balancing on one leg and you have to hit it just right. 

Hit with the top of your foot usually the side volley is being hit from the side (news flash) with your legs making a ninety degree angle when striking the ball. There are all kind of types of soccer shooting techniques and this is one you may need to practice the most.

Things to remember:

-Hit the middle of the ball

-Big follow through after you make contact

-No big leg swing necessary, the momentum of the ball coming to your should give you enough power.

-Bend that plant leg to get low for a sturdy base and better angle.


Other Trick Shots:

(Rabona, Toe Smash, From a Corner Kick (Olimpico), Backheel, Half-Field Shot, Bicycle Kick, Penalty Shot & Diving Header)

Rabona

Rabona

You have this in your game? Please tell me you've mastered the other soccer shooting techniques first, good just checking, good luck with this one then.

Think of wrapping one foot around the other (in this case the standing foot) then replacing the standing foot with the one whipping around it.

Things to remember:

-Just because your dominant foot is right or left this doesn't mean you have to hit the rabona with that foot, try both and do what's more comfortable.

-Use this only out of necessity don't make it a habit.

-Try and get a run up before you hit, it's much harder generating power standing still.

Toe Smash

Toe Smash

Now you can pretend like you meant to hit off your toe! Throw all the other soccer shooting basics out the door for this one.

The most deceptive shots are the quickest released ones and it doesn't get quicker than the toe smash. This isn't going to help all the black toe nails you've been getting but if you want to have more options to score in the box you need to add this skill to your game.

Things to remember:

-No big wind up necessary. Don't give away your intention just snap your foot.

-Try and disguise it like you're going to dribble with a body faint or two then give it a swing.

-You're going to need to find the sweet spot of the ball through some repetition but generally try to the middle or just below the middle of the ball.

Corner Kick Shot on Goal (Olimpico)

Corner Kick Shot on Goal (Olimpico)

Olimpicoooooooooooooo.

If you have the guts go directly for goal from a corner kick. Because of the angle you are really going to need to put some curve and height on it. The one benefit you may have is that the keeper has a whole box full of distractions and players to worry about. Not all soccer shooting skills are created equal and this one is no exception.

Things to remember:

-Hit the outside part of the ball with the inside of your foot, get some real whip on it.

-Big follow through and land across your plant foot after you've hit it.

-Aim high back post into the keepers blind spot, anything they can see in front of them will make it much easier for them to collect.

Back-heel Shot

Back-heel Shot

Ever heard your coach say "play the way you face"!? For this shot forget it.

The back-heel can be used for both a pass and a shot on goal. Usually used when you find yourself close to the opponents goal but not facing it for whatever reason. Even though you won't be using it on a frequent basis it's a nice weapon to have to mislead defenders and goalies.

Things to remember:

-After your initial swing lean forward to get a better range of motion when your leg winds up for the back-heel.

-Hit the bottom central part of the ball and follow through.

-Try and hit the ball with the middle of your heel, any variation will make the ball go elsewhere.

Half-Field Shot

Half-Field Shot

Don't feel like running so much? Try your chances shooting from half.

If you can pull this off it's truly special. Recognizing where the keeper is standing is the most important piece. Not just in the moment before you shoot but all game long you need to see if he has been cheating and is a keeper who plays high off of their line. As important as soccer shooting is in the game don't get used to hitting this one too often.

Things to remember:

-It has to be hit with your laces or chip under the ball, inside of the foot won't due.

-Really put some pace on the ball and over hit it.

-Don't waste your chance and try and do it when the keeper is set on his line.

Bicycle Kick 

Bicycle Kick

Different type of bicycle Lance Armstrong. These are once in a lifetime goals if you can get it just right. Practicing on a trampoline believe it or not may be your best way to get some reps in. Timing, accuracy and a bit of luck all factor into hitting a bike worth remembering.

Things to remember:

-Whether it's over your head or from the side get ready to brace your landing with your off arm or leg.

-Worry about making solid contact over placing it perfectly in a part of the goal. Eyes on the ball.

-Keep your foot locked by pointing your toes down to give it its best chance of working.

Penalty Shot

Penalty Shot

He shoots he.... scores?

Here is one shot that you can use any of the mentioned soccer shooting techniques with. Low, high, inside foot or outside foot this shot really comes down to your own preference.

Things to remember:

-Pick your spot and go with it, don't change in the middle of your run up.

-Put all your focus on the ball, ignore the goalie, fans and other distractions.

-Think only positive thoughts in your head during the walk-up and before shooting.

Diving Header Shot

Diving Header

Now that's using your head.

Put away using your boots for this unique soccer shooting technique. This shot will need some help from a teammate to serve it to you but once contact is made it's one of the prettiest goals you'll ever see. Diving through the air like a swan, all that's left is your celebration choice.

Things to remember:

-If the ball is below your waist you may want to consider a different part of your body to hit it with. If it's above your waist look to make contact with the middle or top of the ball and if possible head the ball in a downward direction. 

-Keep your eyes open all the way until after contact

-If nobody is around you feel free to keep your hands close to your body, if there are people around look to keep them out to protect yourself.






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