FIVE TRAINING PHASES
To see results, you must commit to training. It is recommended that students attend training at least twice per week. Using the martial arts system of progression, students are evaluated prior to the beginning of training to place them on one of the five stages listed above. Each stage consists of 10 levels of progression in the skill work designed to build the basis for the next phase and is the building block for the next level. While some of the skills repeat in each stage, the pace, combination of skills, and use in gameplay progresses through the stages. There is an evaluation for each player approximately every 4 weeks, depending on how frequently they train, so they know where they are within the phase and what is required to move to the next phase.
After each session, students are given a homework assignment. Based on what is done during that session, homework is selected from those drills. Homework is both coach assigned and student selected. Assignments will focus on the drills just introduced and be a progression to the next training session. Students are also asked to pick two drills that they enjoyed and focus on those to master. This philosophy allows students to develop their own style of play and master those moves in preparation for execution during gameplay.
The program introduces skillsets including dribbling, turning, receiving, passing and shooting. Drills begin at a basic level and increase in complexity and speed until students are proficient in both offensive and defensive situations during gameplay.
Speed, Agility & Coordination
When players are fast, especially at a young age, their speed can be exploited. If not properly trained, they may never learn how and when to control their pace to their advantage. By incorporating skill work with speed, agility and coordination techniques, students learn to control their pace and use speed appropriately to get a defender to commit, while using proper body positioning to keep the ball under control.
The first aspect of game awareness is applying skill work into gameplay. This is introduced in the Intermediate Phase of the program. As players advance, they will learn how, when, why and where to use certain moves on the field based upon different game situations. In the Advanced and Elite Phases, students should be proactive and know how to get defenders to commit and create a situation or opportunity for themselves or their teammates instead of simply being reactive to a defenders move.
The NOW Soccer Academy Cadet program is designed to prepare kids ages 4-8 to be ready to play competitive soccer. Our coaching staff will provide proper technique instruction to include dribbling, passing, trapping, and shooting. This is accomplished through technical and tactical exercises, technical games, coordination games, and game situations. Successful completion of the Cadet program provides the basic skill sets for younger players to enter into more formal training in the Beginner Phase of the NOW Soccer Academy curriculum.
The Beginner Phase is comprised of an introduction to skill work that emphasizes proper technique, body language, and finesse with the ball. Students will master basic skill sets using different parts of the foot and touches on the ball to beat a defender in a 1 v 1 situation.
The Intermediate Phase will expand upon the skills mastered as a Beginner and introduce speed, agility and coordination concepts. During this phase, students will become proficient with at least 4-5 techniques that they master on their own. By combining skillwork with speed and agility, students will execute at pace and learn how to control their speed to get defenders to commit.
In the Advanced Phase of training, students are able to execute various combinations. Due to the faster pace of play at this level, more emphasis is placed on the importance of the first touch and body language and their effect on the defender. Sessions are now tailored around small sided games where they can execute their skillwork in 2v2 and 3v3 gameplay.
The Elite Phase focuses on fine tuning the development of the individual player. We now combine skillwork, speed, agility, coordination, and gameplay, while applying these at full pace in an increasingly competitive environment. The use of peripheral vision, awareness of surroundings and exploiting situations to create opportunities for themselves and their teammates are mastered in this phase.