3 years to 5 years
Kickers is the second stage of development where children are introduced to the basics of the game and begin to develop skills which are built upon as their ability increases.
The ball is tailored to their size and children are encouraged to participate in structured games and imaginative free-play, adding yet another dimension to their already flourishing footwork. By this stage most of our Tots move up and will have a basic coordination which enables the coaches to expand on the skills learnt before.
Kickers’ talent is harnessed via dribbling drills and striking of the ball. In addition child interaction and cooperation is actively encouraged as our coaches seek to stimulate greater social skills. Communication is encouraged as Kickers are taught to ask their peers to “pass the ball” and form an overall collective team spirit, achieved through cheering on their peers as they take turns to compete in small sided exercises. It is at this stage that kids are exposed to sharing and overall team play – giving pre-school football pupils the confidence build and skill progression for taking on new challenges and trusting in their coaches.
Dribbling skills are extended and challenges increase to work on combined skills with dribbling, trapping, passing and shooting often in one exercise. The concepts of defending, attacking and goal keeping are introduced as the kids’ vocabulary and knowledge of the game expands. Children start to understand that there are team names, clubs and countries and that some teams are in blue and some are in red, emphasised through the introduction of different colour bibs.
Our Kickers toddler football classes really start to have an impact on improving a child’s physical dexterity, particularly in the lower limbs and feet through a variety of ball-balancing games.
At this stage we also introduce the Futsal Ball for the first time for certain exercises making it easier for kids to pass and control and thereby build their teamwork and understanding of the beautiful game. As children advance S4K introduces them to the skills and techniques made famous by the great Dutch masters, the Brazilian samba, the Spanish passing and the athleticism and fluidity of the French systems – all with the spirit and determination of the English.
Irrespective of what part sport plays in your child’s future, we honestly believe the capacity to participate in controlled play to concentrate on instructions and visually assess a game will hold them in good stead for the future.
One on one games with simple tasks are also introduced where competing for the ball, running in competition, guarding and shielding the ball all become part of their development. Agility and memory games and imaginative exploration of jungles, crocodiles and other hazards that have to be overcome are all part of the mix where we still keep fun top of the agenda.
The capacity to participate in team play, to think both as individuals and bond as a team or group and to understand instructions from the coaches will stand all our little ones in great stead for school and their sporting lives.