7 Amazing Benefits of 1-on-1 Football Coaching That Will Surprise You
When I was a kid, I always dreamt of becoming a footballer. My room was covered with Manchester United posters. I idolised players of the 90’s including Beckham, Berkamp, Del Piero, and Luis Figo. In fact, my father was even concerned with my freakish knowledge of the players on our TV screen. I was obsessed with ‘making it’ to top-flight football.
I played for various clubs at a grassroots and semi-professional level. But I struggled to break through. Eventually, my fate would change and instead I would find my life’s purpose and passion in football coaching. But looking back, I wonder if things would have been different had I invested in a 1 to 1 football coach.
1 on 1 football coaching has huge benefits. I knew I had good dribbling skills and technique. But I lacked physical strength and speed.
I also remember having a lot of fear before I played a competitive game. During the warm-up of a game, I would scope out my direct opposite. I played centre midfield and if the opposition’s central midfield was bigger than me, it would smash my confidence into pieces. I would get into my head and forget all the things I was good at. Unfortunately, I never found a way to solve this problem.
Having worked in the coaching industry for 12 years now, I have seen first-hand that driving out fear, building confidence, improving physical fitness and polishing up on skills can all be achieved quicker with 1 to 1 football coaching.
I see the same struggles I went through in some of the students my team and I work with. But we have seen some remarkable turnarounds in confidence and skills with our one to one training sessions. Let me share with you 7 amazing benefits of 1-on-1 Football Coaching.
7 Massive Benefits of 1-on-1 Football Coaching
1. Setting personal goals
One to one football coaching is very similar to having your own personal trainer. Your first few lessons is more for the coach than the student. They use that time to learn about your key strengths and weaknesses. Through their observation, they then prepare your personalised road map through goal setting and milestones.
Why is this important? Because it makes your performance measurable and that’s the only way progress can be achieved.
2. Bespoke session plans
Don’t get it wrong, group classes have huge benefits too. But it’s often very difficult to offer personalised training in a group setting. That is not the case with one to one football coaching.
With one to one training, you get the added benefit of your own personalised syllabus. This means that exercises are built with your specific goals in mind. If for example, one of your goals is to improve your speed, well you can bet that your lessons will involve a lot of speed work with and without the ball.
3. Repetition, repetition, repetition
One way to master something is to keep repeating it until you perfect it. One to One coaching gives you the time to do this. Under the guidance of your coach, you can repeat skills and core movements until you have mastered it.
Remember that fear I had as a kid? Well, repetition is one of the best ways to conquer it. Through practising over and over, your brain goes into autopilot mode. On game day, it does the thinking for you because the repetition has stored the information and learnt how to connect your mind and body.
It’s no different to driving a car. After doing it so many times, you don’t even think about applying the brake, increasing your speed, turning, checking your mirrors etc. The same is for football. Repetition makes your mind utilise its toolbox of football skills and it selects the appropriate movement to use in a split second. And here’s the best bit. Because you’ve perfected the technique in your one to one lessons, you’ll pull it off perfectly.
4. Adding skills to your toolbox
One to one football coaching opens your horizon to new skills that you can use. I don’t just mean dribbling skills, but all types of skills with and without the ball.
Your qualified and experienced one to one football coach will select these skills based on your ability so you’ll never feel overwhelmed but definitely challenged.
Again, this is hugely beneficial when it comes to game day. Since the game is played at a very high speed, the playing environment is constantly changing. If you have a wealth of skills in your football toolbox, you’ll stand out above the rest.
Think Ronaldo and Messi. These guys stick out on the pitch because they have so many skills in different areas. From dribbling skills, speed, free-kicks to leaping for headers, killer passes and incredible shooting ability.
5. Improving your physical fitness
To compete in the modern game, you just have to be physically prepared. At the heart of it is speed, strength and agility.
With one to one football coaching, you can develop these areas through various conditioning exercises. One thing that we do in our one to one football coaching lessons is HIIT (high-intensity interval training). This involves 30 seconds of intense training followed by a 30 second resting period. For more advanced players, we may push it to 40 seconds of training and a 20-second rest period,
Why is this important? Because it builds your fast-twitch fibres which helps you react quickly on the pitch.
Remember everything happens fast on a football pitch. If you react slowly, before you know it the playing environment has changed again and you’ll find yourself playing catchup the whole time.
Physical fitness is also achieved in one to one lesson through conditioned exercises. You create a game based scenario and work on a particular physical movement. Let’s say its strength you want to work on. Forget the ball for a moment.
You can have the student hold you off side by side moving from one end of the pitch to the other. With each practice, you can apply more pressure and resistance to build their strength. Once they have mastered the technique of using their shoulder to hold you off and not raising their arm, you can then repeat the movement with a ball. You get the drift.
6. Building your confidence
There’s something about having your own personal coach that motivates you. You may have a personal gym trainer, life coach or business coach. Whatever it is, their job is not only to improve your physical performance but also your mental performance. And the two are equally important.
What you say to yourself each day can determine your output. A personal one to one football coach can shape a child’s mental performance. Through positive reinforcement, encouragement and praise, their own self-talk will follow suit. The more a coach applies this method, players are more likely to build their confidence and be less critical of themselves.
I labelled a kid I worked with in the past as ‘Ronaldo’. The more I did it, the more he started playing like him. He would open his body up more and stand in tall confident positions. He would take free-kicks like him and use skills in the same ways. He’d eventually even copy his hairstyle! It was really fascinating to see but it somehow worked.
7. Improve your football brain
Andrea Pirlo said that ‘football is played with the head. Your feet are just tools’. Your football intelligence needs just as much work as your physical technique. One to One lessons are a great way to develop your tactical understanding of the game so you can make better decisions with and without the ball.
Application of skills is at the core of nurturing good decision making. When you learn a new skill, you have to learn how to apply that skill in a game based scenario so your mind becomes more accustomed to when it should and should not be used.
One to One classes harness this understanding through tactical exercises that start in a semi-opposed environment and slowly build up to fully opposed with a defender (i.e. the coach) free to apply maximum pressure.
So there you have it. One to one football coaching is highly recommended to help you take your child’s game to the next level. If I had known of these benefits in my younger playing years, who knows, maybe I could have improved my physical ability, conquered my fear and fulfilled my true football potential.
1 to 1 Football Coaching FAQ’S
What is 1 on 1 football coaching?
1 to 1 football coaching are lessons that involve a player and their own personal coach.
Just like you can get your own personal trainer in gyms, we provide your child with their own personal football coach to help them develop their football skills and confidence.
How does one to one football coaching work?
From your first lesson, your coach will set your personalised road map with goal setting. From there each session will be carefully designed with your specific goals in mind.
How much does 1 to 1 football coaching cost?
One to one football coaching can range in prices. At Samba Soccer Schools our prices start at £50 per lesson when you book 10 lessons.
Can I Get a trial before I take a package?
Yes of course. We don’t expect you to commit to a package until you know what to expect. Therefore we offer a paid trial lesson at £30 to allow you to meet the coach and get an idea of what the lesson involves.