What Exercise for Kids works best during Sports Training Sessions?


What exercises for kids are the best? 

Fitness activities  Skill based practice  Modified games

Game play

Before you ponder this, the sports coach must understand how to successfully organise training sessions.

Exercise for kids is one of the main aims of kids sports.  I believe the planning and implementing of the weekly training sessions is what the majority of junior kids sports coaches stress about the most.  Have you ever hurriedly looked up YOUTUBE to find a few drills and activities just before your sports training session?

A kids sports coach quick 8 point plan to running the training session

1.  You will provide a safe environment. 

2.  You will mazimise athlete participation and make effective use of the time available.

3.  You will have all the required resources and sports equipment ready and available at the start of the training session.

4.  You will provide challenging vigorous exercise that helps  facilitate progressive skill development in all participants.

5.  You will include all athletes, regardless of their level of ability and motivation.

6.  Be prepared for disruptive child behaviour.  Have a plan. 

7.  Keep the training session FUN.  Maximise player enjoyment whenever possible during the training.

8.  Finish the training session at the scheduled time.  Keep the Mum's and Dad's happy!

Training Session Planning and Reviewing

  1. Setting Goals for each session.  These include fitness, strength, skill and game strategy goals.
  2. Plan the session BEFORE arriving at training.  When starting out this will mean making notes, having diagrams.  Carry the notes in your pocket.
  3. Ensure the skills and game strategies are presented to the kids in a logical order.  Basic repetition for skills before asking the kids to demonstrate the skill in a game situation.
  4. Be flexible.  If the session doesn't go according to plan  don't be afraid to make changes.  The kids didn't know what you where going to do anyway!
  5. Be prepared to constantly offer positive encouragement which motivates the kids.
  6. Review the training session by asking for constructive feedback from individuals and the squad during and after the training session. 
  7. Be proactive and act on your own thoughts and feedback regarding the training session. Never ever think you know everything.  There will always be room for adjustments and improvements. 

In summary exercise for kids is cyclic in nature.  The above 7 points for conducting worthwhile training sessions for kids will be repeated over and over for the entire period of your coaching kids sports career. By refining the goals and athlete experiences for each training session it won't belong until you join the Pro coach ranks!

Essential Exercise for Kids Training Session elements

  • session introduction
  • warm up
  • fitness and strength activities
  • specific game skills practice
  • sport specific game play
  • cool down
  • review

Need more information?  CLICK HERE for EXTRA tips for junior sports coaches when planning a kids training session.

Coaches and teachers have been inventing training programs for exercise for kids since junior sport began. Don't try and reinvent the wheel.

The sports coach needs to use the internet, club coaching directors and any local sports specific development officers to plan and implement quality training sessions.  

Don't get caught following the exercise for kids programs of years gone bye, or copying what you did when you were a kid.   Running laps of the field or court, followed by a big game doesn't constitute a great training session.

With a little bit of planning the inexperienced sports coach can develop and deliver a highly active, fun and enjoyable set of fitness drills, specific game skills and finally game strategies for each training session.

Its now time to worry about fitness and skill based activities, modified games and game play.

If you are having trouble planning training sessions ask for help!

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If you come to my coaching kids sports website as a budding football / soccer coach I will let you know of a great program that I purchased and have shared with my fellow teachers.  It called Epic Soccer.  It was developed by Matt Smith a guy who coached himself to a pro level.  You should check it out.  It certainly helped many in my part of the world.