Whether you agree or not, YOUR athlete is not fully reaching their potential. No matter how much time they spend on the soccer field, how many high-level opponents they play, OR even the trainers they work with (including us at QTSD©), many are not fully developing.
Wait what?! You may ask, "Even with professional trainers, high-level competition, and dedicated training time, my athlete may not reach their full development potential?"
Those aspects are ALL very important, but I'll explain the bigger problem AND how you can help YOUR athlete(s) reach their goals! To fully develop, we must look at the full picture, every aspect that can contribute OR hamper improvement. For example, let's take a soccer player's goal of playing at the highest level of personal performance. What goes into that development pathway?
Quite a bit. To succeed, players must consider the following focuses in their development pathway:
The problem starts when when a player starts focusing only on one aspect while ignoring the others. That will cause unbalanced development or missing techniques, resulting in less than satisfactory performance and growth. So what should parents & players consider to succeed?
PHYSICAL DEVELOPMENT - This means much more than just how strong and fast you are. It includes EVERY aspect of your physical being, including athletic nutrition, sleep, recovery, strength, flexibility, speed, and fitness/endurance. Every aspect much be taken seriously to improve your physical development fully, whether ensuring proper nutrition or allowing recovery to prevent overuse injuries.
TECHNICAL DEVELOPMENT - This is the skill set and ability to control the ball, whether with creative foot skills, a consistent first touch, accurate passes, or finishing a shot. It is about developing the technique and muscle memory to become second nature. We suggest athletes spend one hour every day working on specific technical training with BOTH feet. Repetition builds consistency.
TACTICAL DEVELOPMENT - Understanding the movements and philosophies of soccer is what sets our sport apart from many others. There are no timeouts, no strategic pauses (except halftime), and players must play as a unit with 11 individuals. To accomplish this, players must watch professional soccer with purpose regularly. We also suggest gaining coaching experience early (approx. 16-18 years old) to help boost their tactical understanding.
PSYCHOLOGICAL DEVELOPMENT - This is what sets the top players apart from everyone else. Your brain and psyche are muscles, just like anything else. Can you develop the confidence and composure to deal with success AND failure regularly? Can you develop the discipline to keep motivated or the determination to push past injuries/hurdles/other's opinions? Making sure to spend time on your mental health goes a long way towards success, both as a soccer player and a person!
While we don't currently offer nutrition or sleep services at QTSD© yet, we do offer we offer our upcoming QTSD© Complete Development Series each winter to help athletes get a substantial jump on essential aspects of their development pathway. Each month's class focuses on a different development pillar:
"Soccer Speed, Strength, & Agility" Program (December) - Physical development foundation; including speed, strength, and agility
"Absolute Foot Skills" Program (January) - Technical creativity and control of the ball in small spaces
"Control & Confidence" Program (February) - The application of passing & receiving with small groups; applying game realistic tactics on quick surfaces.
**Don't delay, though, as many groups are already 50% full! Each program builds towards the following month's curriculum.**
Even with our professionally developed and tested programs, success is still largely left to YOU and YOUR athlete to make sure the small things consistently are executed daily; including nutrition, technical training, proper recovery/sleep, and more. It takes work but the result is more than worth it!