In Daily Soccer Skills Ep. 7, we highlight some strategies to become a faster player with SAQ for Soccer. Here I will give you a couple strategies to become a faster player in 30 days using this workout in your backyard. SAQ training stands for (Speed, Agility, and Quickness). The Workouts I have designed are meant to mimic soccer related movements and help with agility and footwork. I will show you the set-up, talk through the exercises, and then give some key points for becoming faster.
Set-Up and Key Coaching Points for SAQ Training for Soccer
1. Use 7 cones spread 24 inches (2 ft.) apart for this training. The 7th cone should be placed 5 yards from the 6th cone to allow for a little sprint acceleration at the end of the exercise.
2. During workout, keep feet moving quickly through cone set-up, concentrate on footwork and your next moves. Really work on your transition at the end and try to hit 75-90% speed within the 5 yard window to the 7th cone.
Key Coaching Points for SAQ
1. Shuffle Through, side to side. Shuffle with sharp, quick feet through cones. Do not let feet overlap or touch. Quick, tight cuts side to side.
2. 2 steps in between cones and 2 steps out. Be aware here that your exercise should look like a lot of little "V's" with regards to exercise movement. If it starts to look like a "U" or a straight line across, you aren't performing the exercise properly. Up and back, drawing little quick "V's" with your movement.
3. Shuffling through sideways. Get through the cones like you would imagine a snake performing the SAQ. Keep your hips square to the line of cones. Keep your eyes down the line to be aware of next movement. Concentrate on footwork so as not to disrupt the cones.
4. High knees going sideways. Get your leading leg to a 90 degree angle going through the exercise. Aim for 2-3 steps in between each set of cones. Keep your hips square to the line and eyes down the line for proper form and control over your body through the SAQ.
5. 2 Steps in between each cone. Facing forward, quick steps in between each cone, control upper body and focus on lower half to create good form and function going forward.
6. 1 Step in between each cone, each step a little faster. Use this part of the SAQ as a build-up to a 100% sprint. Start your first step slow, but try to get yourself to 100% as quick as possible.
You will want to perform 5-10 of each of these exercises. For example, if you are doing the shuffling through forward facing, perform 10 of them. If you are doing sideway shuffle, do 5 on each side. Either way, you want to do 10 of each exercise during the SAQ, but if you have trainings where your body is facing right and left, only do 5 of each...this will obviously still total you 10 for the exercise.
As a player, I've never heard a coach complain about a soccer player being too fast. As a coach, you want to work with the fastest, strongest, and most technically sound players you can. Performing this training 2-3 times a week will vastly improve your footwork and speed within 30 days.
I would stack this workout at the end of my training. If you take 2 Daily Soccer Skills trainings, then drop a 20 minute SAQ workout on the end of it you are going to see some noticeably quick movements to your game. You will get out exactly what you put into your training!!!
As always, share with a friend on social media below and make sure to follow us on YouTube @ Daily Soccer Skills. If you have any suggestions for a training that might help you or others, feel free to send me a note and I will work on a session to help you get better. Look forward to hearing from you @Ask The Coach!!!
Let's get out there and train.
Yours in Soccer,