Leadership and soccer are not distant concepts, they are, without a doubt, both sides of the same coin. In sports, especially those that are played in groups, the team mentality prevails, but this requires someone guiding them through the complications of each challenge, and that is when the leadership skills come into play. Today you will learn how to achieve excellence through it, both in and out of the field. Ready? Let’s go!
Leadership and soccer are a magic couple
It cannot be denied that there is a natural component of leadership. For many, leaders are born, but they can also be created. There is no better way to do so than through a sport. All of us, especially children, can learn how to be leaders, productively and functionally.
One of the best things that sports do in favor of that is allowing the exploration of the unique capabilities of children and orienting them to goals. Children know that an action has a reaction and when the result they want is a victory, they are motivated to take steps towards that. However, without a leader, a person that takes on a prominent role and says “We must do this and that,” rarely is a game won.
I know what you are thinking, “They have the coach to guide them,” and while it is true that a coach orients the children in general, once their game begins, they need to tune in with their teammates. In soccer, this happens in both offensive and defensive situations, a leader guides them through them and keeps them focused on the goal of scoring or avoiding a score in their goal.
These in-field leaders know what to do because they know their team and each individual’s skill. Whether it is a conscious or innate choice, it does not matter: these children have developed the attention to detail and motivation skills that make them take charge when needed. But not all leaders are the same.
What kind of leaders exists in and out of the field?
- The motivator: the one that keeps morale up in the group; this is a happy-go-lucky, charming type of person.
- The responsible: the one that comes forward when the chance presents itself. He or she is the most mature of them all, often reminding others of their responsibility in any given situation.
- The achiever: this one is motivated to succeed and boost everyone to do the same. He or she tends to be loud and is often one of the best players on the team.
- The caregiver: the one that is paying attention to the needs of each team member. These leaders tend to their players and often give them advice.
- The emotional: this leader focuses on the feelings of others. They assess them and find ways to create a positive impact in situations through empathy.
How can you raise leadership skills in your child, in and out of the field?
What steps can you take to help your child boost their leadership skills to their full potential? Simple: you need to see them as any other skill you can train for. Much like with physical activity, the more you prepare, the better you are at it.
These are some exercises to help them unlock their leadership in soccer and their everyday lives:
- Give them goals: goal-oriented children tend to create paths to achieve them, which is even more important when these are designed to be achieved by a group, like the goals in soccer.
- Add some responsibility: leaders are held accountable for their responsibilities. Adding additional or more complex tasks helps them realize what the weight of their actions in the materialization of their plans is.
- Request their follow up: this is a fundamental skill in a leader. They need to know how to assess their progress as well as their setbacks.
- Query them about their teammates: ask them relevant questions about their teammates, like what is their main skill? What do they need to improve? Leaders know their team better than themselves.
- Take them off balance: a good leader knows how to solve problems fast. Taking them off balance by throwing something unexpected (one less player, a new challenge, etc.) at them.
At Evolution Soccer Academy, we believe in leadership as a fundamental skill; this makes us the ideal choice to make your child experience soccer in an organized and positive way. Enroll them with us, and you will see what elite training by a professional team with over 30 years of combined experience in professional soccer does.
Contact us and take the first step to score a goal for your child’s future!
Facebook: Evolution Soccer Academy USA