Posts Tagged ‘soccer shoes’

Soccer Cleats for Beginners

Friday, April 15th, 2011

Although playing soccer in bare feet is a great way to develop your soccer touch and strengthen your feet, you will need to buy a pair of soccer cleats. It will likely be the most expensive item of soccer gear that you get, but they are essential to have if you want to play well and play competitively.

You may need more than one pair of soccer boots so that you can pay in different field conditions. Although you can buy soccer shoes that have screw-in cleats which means that you can change them at half-time to adjust to changes in conditions. Apparently, top players like David Beckham wear a new pair of studs for every game.

The number of studs or cleats on the sole varies as does the way in which they are positioned. What studs do you need for the field that is wet and muddy? Longer studs. What studs do you need if the field is dry and hard? Shorter ones. The studs allow for sharp turns and long passing and are vital for dribbling with the ball.

Did you know that the referee (or an assistant) needs to check the studs of every player entering the field of play and will not allow to play anyone wearing soccer boots with sharp edges or protruding nails?

How to buy soccer cleats?

The best boots are made with top quality leather uppers and light synthetic soles. They are comfortable (like carpet slippers), long-lasting and enable you to put spin on the ball if you know what you are doing. You can now buy very colorful soccer boots, but the classic design is black and white trim.

When buying a pair of boots, make sure that they are comfortable, fit well, especially in the width, and are flexible in all directions, including the sole (the bottom of the boot). There are four different types of football boots: moulded studs, screw-in studs, blades and astroturf trainers. You may want more than one pair for different environments.

For the beginner soccer player who is playing on grass, the best boot is probably a moulded cleat. It pays to get a pair or two of boots that you really like – although they may not turn you into an excellent player nor they may not have a mind of their own like in the classic Comic Strip called:

Billy’s Boots

This Tiger & Scorcher comic strip featured Billy Dane, a schoolboy who was not a good soccer player until he discovered a pair of old style, football boots that had belonged to a famous professional footballer called Jimmy “Dead Shot” Keen. These boots possessed special abilities which turn Billy into a fantastic football player when he wore them. He would score great goals, lead him to be in the right place at the time on the pitch like they had a mind of their own.

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Beginner Soccer Skills 4: Ball Control

Monday, May 10th, 2010

Controlling the soccer ball is a fundamental soccer skill for all players of the beautiful game. When a pass is delivered to us, we have to control the ball effectively at whatever angle, height or speed it arrives. This means that when we play soccer we must really pay attention to the path of the ball as it comes to us. Receiving the ball requires good eye-foot coordination in order to get hold of the ball and keep possession for our team.

  • It is all about our first touch. This is where we immediately soften, cushion or deaden the ball.

What we are aiming to do is to put the ball exactly where we want it with the same touch we use to bring it under control. This gives us the time and space to consider what to do next: pass, dribble or shoot. This takes lots of practice. Over time we will know what to do with the ball before it arrives.


Kick a ball against a wall and control the ball when it comes back at you. For now aim to ‘cushion’ it with your feet. Use the inside of your foot at first as this is the easiest way to control the ball. Later use the outside of your soccer shoes and the sole of your soccer boots.

Kick the ball at various heights and with various amounts of power. Each time control the rebound. Once you are comfortable with this drill, ask a friend to kick the ball against the wall and control the rebound.

As you do these drills, focus on the part of the ball where contact will occur.

Practice controlling a tennis ball (or mini-ball) as well as a full-sized ball. Notice how easy the bigger ball is to control after trying to control the smaller tennis ball. Remember to use both feet so that you don’t have a ‘weaker’ foot. Have a selection of soccer balls to practice with, including training balls and skill balls.



Now you can practice using your body – head, chest, thigh – to control the ball. Play a game of ‘head tennis’ with a friend. The aim is to keep the ball from touching the ground by using your head, chest, thigh or feet.


Practice controlling, trapping and cushioning the ball. Do these fun soccer drills every other day for 3 weeks. As for the other skills, take the time to imagine doing these soccer skills in your mind whenever you can.


  • Pay attention to the path of the soccer ball as it approaches.
  • Focus on the part of the ball where contact will occur.
  • Soften, cushion or deaden the ball as it arrives.

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