Continuing Your Goalkeeper Training After Camp

Every year I get feedback and questions about goalkeeper training. “Where can I get training like this?” “I want to do more goalkeeper training like this, but my coach doesn’t know what to do.”

What should a typical goalkeeper session consist of?

·      The first component of the session should be basic footwork/agility drills. Footwork is an underestimated part of being a goalkeeper. IF you can move around the goal in speed often you will make saves other goalkeepers won’t
       o   Setting up 8 cones in a row and performing several footwork drills is a simple and effective way to quicken your footwork and work on your agility
·      This is also a good time to work on explosiveness. Single leg hurdle hops are a great way to work on the single leg explosiveness that is crucial for goalkeeping. Similar to the cone drill above set out several hurdles in a row and perform jumps forward/facing left/ facing right

·      Once you have completed footwork move onto passing. This is a vital part of being a modern goalkeeper. Coaches will want you to be comfortable with your feet and be able to start play from the back
·       A great exercise is setting out two small goals (2 yards across) roughly 8 yards from a partner. Receive the ball through the cones and then return the ball back to the other player through his mini goal

·      Next is handling. Appropriate catching technique is a fundamental skill for a goalkeeper. Also, handling is a good way to get your hand eye coordination going before moving to more technically difficult exercises
·      Basic volleys from 6-12 yards, straight at the goalkeeper is all that is needed for this section

·      After you have worked on handling move to diving. This is again a warm up for what is to come. Therefore, simple side to side collapsing dives is all that is needed for this section

Angle Work
·      Now we are getting into the fun stuff! Angle work should be incorporate next. This is focusing on where you should be getting set in the goal. Furthermore, this portion works on the technical aspect of your game, understanding how to close an angle or how you can make it hard for the opposition to score
·      You want to make a mini goal using the post and a cone with the server roughly 10 yards away at a 45o angle from center of the goal. The goalkeeper starts on the post and then moves into the line of the ball to receive a shot from the server
       o   Look on YouTube for some different ideas. There are plenty out there!!

Shot Stopping
·      This should be the main component of the training. You want to spend the most time on this exercise because it incorporates all the skills you have been warming up for. I would recommend putting a drill together with multiple saves in it. Again, you must make sure you are working on your technique in this section of training
·      An easy drill is to have multiple balls lined up on the edge of the box at different angles and distances. You have to touch a post then get set, make a save, then go back and touch the post before you take another shot

·      Similar to footwork this is another important part of goalkeeping that is overlooked. In college, being comfortable dealing with long balls is essential. You should always finish your session with at least 10 crosses from each side. Some from the corner and others from various angles and distances

·      Finally, practice a few goal kicks and punts at the end of training. Try and set a target as if you are looking to kick to your striker and then practice hitting that target. You can often do this on your own