The weekends of my youth were spent on the soccer field. I played on a team that traveled a lot and I loved it. I married a man who loved soccer just as much as I did, so how could our daughter not love soccer? When LG was little, we spent a lot of time kicking the ball around instilling a love of soccer. We started her in a soccer class when she was two and she has participated ever since. She does love it, in theory, but in practice…not so much.
During the fall season, I sat on the sideline frustrated at LG’s lack of aggressiveness. It drove me nuts to watch her being intimidated by other players or doing cartwheels in the backfield. Truth be told, she had moved up an age group and was now one of the youngest players but it was so hard to watch her become the shrinking violet on the field.
Winter came and we really wanted to keep her soccer skills up but weren’t sure how. We looked around at some indoor options and finally settled on a local futsal class. I will be honest; I didn’t even know what futsal was. I thought she was going to play indoor soccer but that wasn’t the case! I am so happy that we signed LG up because the skills that she learned have helped her grow leaps and bounds. She really enjoyed the class and I could see that she really does love soccer.
Futsal is played on a smaller “field” indoor with no walls. Players work much harder to control the ball from going out of bounds, thus touch the ball 200% more. LG played lots of games to work on her hand/eye coordination…one of the games were even played with hands which is often a no-no in soccer, but these games have really helped.
LG was excited to sign up for the spring season and we even got three of her friends on a team together. Soccer season starts tomorrow and suddenly, LG doesn’t want to play. I have spent the past few weeks trying to get her excited to play.
LG and I have spent the last few weeks watching soccer on YouTube. We kick the ball around. I let her beat me in short games. We practice skills that we found on the app Skillz and Drillz, which I highly recommend if you have a kid who loves soccer because it is fun and better, free!
I figure at this point, I have tried my best to help my daughter fall in love with soccer. If by the end of this season she isn’t in love, we will have to step back and let her decide if she wants to play or not. Her father and I will be heartbroken if she chooses to not play anymore but I will get over it. There’s always gymnastics, right?