Technique on Demand
Way, way back in the mid 90s when working for Roby Stahl at Post-to-Post soccer he introduced me to something he called Technique on Demand (TOD). A nice tight, easy to organize set up to get kids hundreds of touches on the ball with various body parts in a short amount of time and in limited space.
As my coaching career progressed TOD became a core part curricula for camps and warming-up for teams for both sessions and games. Also, as I more and more dealt with elite athletes (and older ones) it became a method to influence work rate and raise fitness levels.
It was a very efficient way to address one of the fundamental challenges our players face – they simply do not get enough touches on the ball. Basically what TOD is two players, one server and one player combining with the server to return the ball.
- Inside of foot on ground.
- Laces of the foot on the ground.
- Outside of foot on the ground.
- The same three above in the air.
- Control with thigh return on ground or in air with three above controlling surfaces.
- Chest control and return.
- Simple header.
As with any “drill” the secret to success is control the intensity, distances and time involved. In almost all set-ups TOD is hard work so you cannot expect a player of nine to execute with same pace or success rate as a university player. Work to rest ratios vary with setup from 1:1 to 1:2 and even higher as more players get involved but even with larger groups the ratio can be kept balanced.
I’ve successfully used these setups with groups from eight to eighty players in size and suggest you keep the total time to between 10 and 15 minutes to ensure maximum enjoyment for all.
Below are diagrams (click on image for larger versions) with some possible setups for TOD work – there are many more experiment a bit and add your own.
The possibilities, challenges and flexibility of this setup is almost endless. Have fun with it and the players will too.
Questions, comment and concerns use the form below or contact me directly – bill(at)canadakicks.com you can also follow my ramblings on Twitter: @bill_ault