Skill Development: Instep Kick and Foot Trap
This skill development focuses on instruction and exploration of kicking a ball with the dominant foot from a stationary starting position and with a stationary ball. It includes exploration of stopping a ball from moving on the ground by using a foot trap. The EPEC Classic TLP for instep kick is used for instruction and form corrections, with focus on steps 1 & 2 (Step & kick, Backswing/kick action). The kindergarten GLO is to kick a ball from a stationary position.
Say to students:
- Now let’s focus on improving our skills using our legs and feet with the ball so that you can participate well in lots of different games.
- In many games you will need to know how to kick a ball and stop it from moving while it is on the ground.
- Knowing these skills will help you feel more confident about joining in to move and play.
- When we are practicing, please remember that we want to use safe equipment handling, responsibility with the balls and want to work well with partners to have the best practice possible.
- Remember, I might use various cue words as reminders for safety (e.g., freeze please, foot to ball, eyes on me).
- Ask half of the students to move safely to a space spot and stand on it.
- Then ask the other half to stand an arm’s length behind a student who is already on a space spot to be their practice partner.
- Use TLP below to teach and model the ready position (staggered feet, kicking foot in front, eyes focused).
- Model how to use their non-dominant foot to take a big step beside the ball (cone) and how to backswing with their dominant foot toward the bum/backside.
- Remind students that just as they used their favorite hand to complete ball control with their hands, they will try using their favorite foot for ball control with feet.
Practice: Pretend Ball-Kick the Cone
- Ask students to raise their favorite hand high in the air, then place the foot on that same side, out in front of their body.
- Ask them to practice the series:
- Big step beside cone
- Backswing their favorite foot towards bum
- Swing leg/foot toward cone
- Kick/tip the cone
- Ask the student practicing the skill to reset the cone then go stand behind their practice partner.
- Call cue words aloud to coach them to use their best body form (e.g., ready, eyes on, favorite foot in front, big step beside, swing back to bum, kick your cone, reset and switch places with your partner).
- Repeat the skill practice 3-5 times with each practice partner.
Explain/Demonstrate: Ball to Wall
- Share that they will now get the chance to try their kick with a ball.
- Demonstrate how they will try to kick their ball to the wall, run to retrieve it using the receive position they practiced last week, then bring it back to the spot and set it in position for their practice partner.
- Explain that to kick the ball they will use their instep on the ball. Show them the shoelace part of the foot and explain that this is called the instep.
- Show how pointing the kicking foot makes the instep of the foot contact the ball, which will help them to give a strong kick.
- Explain that they will continue taking turns and practicing, using your cue words to try to give the best kicks that they can.
- Position a foam ball in place of each cone in front of each student standing on a space spot.
Practice: Ball to Wall
- Direct first practice partners to show readiness.
- Call cue words aloud to coach them to use their best body form (e.g., ready, eyes on, favorite foot in front, big step beside ball, swing back to bum, point foot and follow through, run to retrieve, reset and switch places with your partner).
- Continue skill practice until each student has had 5-8 turns.
Explain/Demonstrate: Ball to Ball/Foot Trap
Say to students: Now that you have had some fun trying to kick your ball, we are going to try to stop the ball when it is rolling toward us. To do this you will need to know the proper way to stop the rolling ball.
- Explain that stopping the ball with the foot is called foot trapping.
- Tell students that the front underside of the foot is called the ball of the foot. Show students where the ball of the foot is located and ask them to point to it.
- Demonstrate how to place the ball of their favorite foot on top of the ball, while firmly pressing down to stop the ball and keep it from moving.
- Allow each student an opportunity to practice.
- Tell them that they will now try their kick and foot trap together.
Explain/Demonstrate: Ball to Wall & Ball to Ball
- Share with students that they will get the chance to continue practicing and trying to improve their instep kick.
- Demonstrate how they will kick the ball to the wall, trying to get enough force on their kick that the ball will bounce off the wall and roll back to them.
- Explain that after the kick, they will move toward the ball and try to control/stop their ball with a ball-to-ball foot trap, then pick it up and reset it for their practice partner.
- Tell them they should continue to take turns practicing while the music is on, but if they hear the music pause, they should freeze with a listen and learn position.
- Remind students that they should try to work well together by taking turns, using safe moving/ball handling skills and showing sportsmanship/manners.
Practice: Ball to Wall & Ball to Ball
- Check that each practice pair has their ball in the correct starting position.
- Start music to begin movement.
- Move through activity space and encourage students to use proper form.
- After 2-3 minutes of practice, pause music and ask students to freeze please.
Ask students to low-five or pinky shake with their practice partner, return their ball to the designated spot, and sit down in their team position.