How are you going to improve your soccer game this summer? Have you considered setting measurable and timely goals to get you to the next level? Read on for tips and ideas.
What is Goal Setting?
Goal setting is identifying what you want to accomplish and making a measurable and timely plan to achieve that goal. When creating goals you need to ensure that you can identify steps to achieve your main goal. Setting goals and plans to achieve them can increase and maintain motivation and break down large tasks into more manageable steps.
Why is it important?
Goal Setting is important to provide long-term vision and short-term motivation. Furthermore, goal setting allows you to focus your time and resources to help achieve your aspirations. All high level soccer players set goals. Goals can be how many goals you want to score to how many shutouts you want that season. Whatever your goal, it is important to make sure your goals are measurable. A goal that says I want to give 100% in each game is hard to measure and then hard to maintain over a season.
Realistic goals for a high school athlete this summer could include improving your game knowledge by both playing competitive matches at least once a week in the summer and watching professional games as well. It's World Cup so start watching and pay special attention to players who play in your field position. Consider how they move off the ball and position themselves on the field. Look to engage with local summer leagues and even ask around about pick-up game opportunities in addition to summer camps and tournaments.
Another realistic goal for the summer is to improve your fitness. Find a way to measure your current fitness with a test such as the beep test. Talk to your coach or fitness trainer to develop a summer training schedule and test yourself against your baseline throughout the summer. Celebrate your success. Remember, this will pay off this fall season!
Make sure your goals are challenging, and not really easy to achieve. You want your goals to push you to be a better player. Using the SMART goal framework is one of the simplest ways to set goals. Below is a link to the University of California San Diego SMART goal sheet that walks you through how to set goals. Good luck!