Football is one of America’s passions for good reason. Many people enjoy playing the game just for the sheer fun of it, while other strive to be the best player they can be. Ultimately there are people who become professional players. But no matter your reason for playing, here are some tips to help you improve your game.
Remember, you don’t need to tackle to have a fun game of football. There are many variations on the game that are just as fun while being a lot safer. Try a game of touch football. Instead of tackling, if the person with the ball is touched by the opposition, then it’s a tackle.
Use both your feet to play football, so that you can get faster and better. The majority of people perform better using their dominant foot. If you learn to adapt to using your other foot, you can really pick up the pace and out maneuver opponents better.
A great football tip when you’re trying to tackle is to attempt your tackle from a low position. Staying low will give you a lot more power and it will make it harder for the opposing player to be able to shake off the tackle. Not staying low could actually get you run over instead.
Learn the proper technique for backpedaling in football. Keep your posture low and make sure your shoulders are aligned over your feet. This technique allows you to keep your balance when changing positions. Practice this technique often with a few of your teammates so that it becomes second nature.
Speed is an important attribute for a football player. Regardless of your size or the position you play on the field, you need to practice improving your speed. Working on increasing your speed before you worry about adding weight to your frame. The extra weight may slow you down and being big and slow is not going to help your team.
Learn about the best passing routes. It is not typical for a receiver to pursue a straight path up a field. They use various routes, including slants and crossing routes. If a receiver dashes forward and then runs across the field, it is known as a crossing route. With a slant, the run is diagonal. Either route can help you get the ball up the field quickly.
Football training takes a toll on your body if you do not have a consistent recovery plan. This does not mean taking time off from training during the off-season periods. It means allowing your body to recuperate every night and on days off. Get at least eight hours of sleep every night, drink plenty of water (not sodas) and soak in epsom salts three times a week.
There may be times when it is more effective to run the ball even though there are receivers open. Learning to know when to change a play is important for any quarterback. If you are running a passing play and spot an opening, power run up the opening to gain the maximum yardage.
Practice your vertical leap. This is a useful skill in basketball, but it also comes in handy in football. The ball might be thrown out of your reach and you will have to leap to catch it. Another situation might be if the opponent is in your way at the goal line. But no matter what, you game will be better for having this skill in your possession.
To prevent the ball from bouncing off your body, catch the ball away from your body. The rule of thumb is that if you can touch the football, you should be able to catch it. After making a successful catch, pull the ball close to your body and run to gain more yardage.
When tackling a player, make sure that you keep your head up. You do not want to smash into another player with the top of your helmet. Experts will refer to this as spearing. It is not within the rules, and it might cause a severe neck injury or concussion.
Stiff arming can really help you get more yards. You extend the free arm forward as the defender reaches you. Try to push yourself through the opposing tackle. Do not put your hands in or on the face mask of the defender.
To run down the game clock, make sure that the receivers and running backs on the other team stay within bounds. If you can keep them on the field, the clock won’t be stopped and will instead run out. If your lead is large enough, you don’t have to do this.
Always watch the hips of the receiver to figure out where he is going. If you can master anticipating the movements of the receiver, you can not only tackle him, but actually get the ball before he does. If you can get between him and the ball, go for it!
Watch NFL games to learn from the pros. There is nothing better than watching both the mistakes and the good plays made in the big leagues. You can see their form, pay attention to what they excel at and then mold yourself to match their performance and benefit from the results.
To improve your lateral speed, do lateral lunges during your workouts. Stand in an athletic stance and lunge to the side. Your thigh should remain parallel to the ground. Go back to the starting position and then lunge to the other side. Do six to twelve repetitions on each side.
To be the best football player that you can be, proper nutrition to fuel your body is essential. Empty calories from soda and fast food should be avoided. Instead, eat whole grains, proteins, fruits and vegetables to provide your body with the energy it needs to keep you going all game long.
As you can see, there is much to learn about football and how to be a better player. The key to being a great player has as much to do with physical skills as it does with your attitude on and off the field. Use the tips from above to become a better all around player on the field.