No childhood is complete without a mini soccer ball bouncing around the house. What would life have been without a mini ball and an impromptu game of soccer in the hallways of your home.
Even though training with your team is done that doesn't mean you can't get some more touches in, keep a mini ball by your feet as you walk around your house and just mess about, every touch counts!
The typical mini soccer ball that you would buy or get as a souvenir at a game or tournament is classified as a size 1 soccer ball.
This is 18-20 inches to be exact and should fit easily in the palm of your hand. If you're not sure if you have a mini ball and you grew up in a house anything like mine then try putting it through your siblings legs.
If they noticed and aren't worried about hurting you by throwing it back at your head, you'll know you have a size 1.
Thought you'd never ask, below you will find five great links to sites that sell the best mini balls around. If you're going in person then your local soccer or even sports store will most likely have them.
Absolutely! It's a great around the house kind of skill development tool.
Whether you're juggling it around your room, up the stairs or trying to meg your favourite chair (if you know, you know) having a mini soccer ball (or two!) around the house is nice reminder of getting your daily touches in.
1. After having a mini ball at your feet for hours switching to size 5 will seem like a breeze.
2. Easy to carry around, toss it in your bag and pull it out anytime to get a touch or two in.
3. Gives you extra reps at home after training, those will add up!
4. The challenge of it. Trying to do all your skills with a small ball is a real challenge, after mastering a skill with a size 5, try the mini for a new challenge.
5. Did anybody say fun? It's fun messing about with a small ball megging your siblings (or chairs) around the house.
If you're still not convinced have a look at this incredible test done with a groups of kids who were training with big and small soccer balls and the effectiveness of each.
If you're fancy and want to know the science that backs up working on your skills with a variation of balls including mini balls then have a read of this scholarly article.
The article talks about skill acquisition using various sized balls and benefits of such training, have a read below for the full article.
Effect of Practicing Soccer Juggling With Different Sized Balls Upon Performance, Retention and Transfer to Ball Reception
If you're looking for some inspiration then have a look at the tricks with a min ball video below. Be creative and try and do some of these tricks and add your own variations.
Looking for some drills you can do at home and on your own, look no further. Touches, moves and dribbles to help you increase our ball mastery, enjoy.
How about as early as they can possibly stand? A mini ball is great because of its light weight and small size for any toddler to kick about.
It's a great way for a young kid to fall in love with the game and build confidence hitting a small ball and getting comfortable with the way it moves and how it feels at their feet.
That's right let's get to the good stuff, let the games begin.
This game is pretty straight forward as the name says. Two people play against each other in a house or apartment hall way. Each person will choose either a bedroom door or opening into the next room as their net to defend. Other than that its standard soccer rules, try and score on the other persons net while defending yours, most goals wins. Yes you can use the walls to dribble around your opponent or bank goals in, game ends when a person scores the goals you're playing up to, or when your Mom screams at you, either way.
Just simple keeping the ball up off the ground with your feet and other body parts. The reason this is so beneficial with a small ball is it challenges you to be really specific on what part of your foot, thigh, shoulder or anything else you are hitting the ball with. Push yourself, try and beat your record, when you get to practice and start to juggle with a size 5 ball you'll realize its benefits.
While watching TV or messing around on your phone on the couch have the ball by your feet getting some touches in. When you get really good start trying to keep the ball up while sitting, stalling it from one foot to the other and continually standing up and sitting down while juggling.
Okay so you're going to need a wall and a ball. What a creative name. Start with passing the ball against the wall while alternating the inside of each foot and see how many you can do (try 20 to start). Then keep doing that but try a different part of your foot (outside, sole, top etc). After that try hitting it a little higher against the wall while letting the ball bounce once off the wall and once off the ground before hitting it, again try to do 20 in a row. Finally without letting the ball hit the ground at all try using the wall as almost a juggling partner and keep the ball off the ground while rotating parts of your foot. Such a simple but effective exercise to get your touch to that of a highly skilled player, I literally built my touch from games like this growing up.
Soccer Golf (around the house)
Just like golf you can play alone or against someone. You will pick a target to hit which will act as the hole and least amount of kicks to hit it wins. For example you can choose a chair in the basement or in your parents bed room, then using creative shots and banks you try and hit the target. You can play best of 5 or 7 and alternate who chooses the hole for that round. This is brilliant because it makes you think about what type of foot surface you should use to execute the shot you want. It also works on the weight of your pass based on which object you may need to avoid or bank to get to the hole, one of my favourites.
Soccer Tennis (with furniture)
Famously played with a size 5 ball outdoors but this version of soccer tennis can be played indoors with a mini soccer ball over anything you make into a net. Serves, smashes and finesse shots all play roll in this just like regular tennis to help increase your foot skills with some competition.
1v1 Meg Game
A nutmeg or meg is when you put it through someones legs. In this game each person is trying to meg the other for a point. Get creative and bounce it off walls and other objects to try and trick the opponent. The megs will happen more often than you think considering how small the ball is.