We braved the indifferent weather last Saturday to get out on to the playground once more, this time for a rare session of football. As many other sports clubs have football as their main sport we buck the trend which means that we rarely play it. Anyway, we put out new footballs to great use by practising a number of drills focusing on ball control.
The session started with some warm ups led by Ray, Ciara and Ollie. Then it was on to the football and in particular dribbling - keeping control of the ball while moving. As always, through a series of drills and games we built the skill level up during the session so to start with it was just moving around the playground keeping control of your ball. Then it was on to a traffic light game where you had to stop with your ball under control on a red light, stay still but move the ball between your feet on a yellow light and go around the playground on green with the ball under control. The lights in question being coloured cones being held up by one of the coaches.
Next up was dribbling the balls around cones over a slalom course, then the same again but with shooting at the end aiming to get the ball between two cones (goal posts).
After that we raised the competitive level by having a slalom course side by side so two members could compete against each other to get up the course first.
Alan then came up with some games that he struggled to explain to me so they are hard to relate! But basically the pitch was set up in a rectangle with each corner being a different colour. The members were then instructed to go to different corners, in control of their footballs, by the colour being called out. There then followed a game that incorporated turning with the ball and changing direction.
All these skills were then put to good practice when the members divided up in to two teams for a competitive match - reds vs yellows - just like Roy of the Rovers (one for the older readers there!)
After the main break we took things inside as the clouds were getting darker and the spots of rain were becoming more frequent! We therefore switched sports and instead of a football match, as we didnt want to be breaking windows in the school hall, we played a hockey match instead. The groups were split in to two teams, reds and yellows, and using upturned benches for goals we got going. Ball control now was through plastic hockey sticks and the ball was now a tennis ball but the concentration and skills required were the same and we saw some great action including passing, team work, shooting and fantastic goal keeping.
Epping Forest Sportability Club is a multi-sports club for young people with mild to moderate physical and learning difficulties.