Choose the health content that’s right for you, and get it delivered right in your inbox.
As the world’s most popular sport, soccer offers a great incentive for kids and adults alike to stay physically active and bond as a family. Family soccer is a great alternative to screen time, gets everyone outdoors and allows you to participate in a sport that’s loved and played on nearly every continent.
If you’re wondering how to start playing soccer at home, we’re here to help. From what equipment you’ll need to great ways to introduce the sport to your kids, we’ll have you kicking the ball around in no time.
What Soccer Equipment Do I Need?
One of the best things about soccer is how little equipment you need to get started. Essential soccer equipment to use includes:
- Cones: Whether you want to practice agility drills or mark a goal, a few cones can help define your boundaries. If you don’t have cones, you can use sandbags, water bottles, jackets or any other brightly colored object.
- Soccer ball: Choosing the right soccer ball is essential as the centerpiece of the game. If you’ve never played soccer, note that soccer balls come in different sizes for different ages and levels. For young children, a size three ball is best. Use size four for grade school kids and a size five for teens and adults.
- Good shoes: While you might consider special soccer cleats for you or your child if you’re in more competitive leagues, you’ll be just fine in sneakers or running shoes for casually kicking the ball around at home.
Once you have your soccer essentials, you’re all set for drills and games in your backyard or a local park. You don’t need a full soccer field to play with your family.
Ways to Incorporate Soccer into Your Play Routine
Kicking off a soccer game doesn’t have to be complicated. And playing a full game is easier when everyone has the fundamentals down. You can introduce your kids to soccer and encourage family play by:
- Keep a soccer ball with you: Keep a soccer ball in your car for impromptu park visits or other excursions to wide open spaces. You never know when you might need one.
- Join pickup games: Joining a pickup game (an informal game that’s not part of a league) at a park is a great way to let your kids see you having fun. It’ll give them more confidence to participate, leading to more organized games later.
- Practice passing and agility: Along with being good old-fashioned fun, drills are great to encourage less-experienced players to get involved. Plus, you don’t need much space. Drills also reinforce important team skills like sharing the ball and working together.
- Teach the proper technique: Start small with simple techniques like teaching your kids to kick the ball with the side of their foot. Issue challenges to practice skills without using their hands.
- Watch soccer on TV: If the weather isn’t cooperating for outdoor play, take a break with your kids to watch the professionals play as part of your family’s allotted screen time. Watching the pros can give children a better idea of how to play the game.
Soccer safety should always come first — especially for pickup games. There’s no reason for slides or tackling. Keep everyone on their feet and avoid plays that might lead to sports injuries or hurt other players. Watch for any holes, stumps, roots or debris in your playing area.
Get Active and Stay Safe With AdventHealth
Whatever sport you’re into, physical activity can keep you and your family healthy and strong in body, mind and spirit. If you’re looking for ways to get active, we can help you reach your goals with your whole health in mind.
Learn more about how our AdventHealth sports medicine and rehabilitation experts can help you stay at the top of your game.