Exercising for Soccer Shape

Whether you’ve played soccer or not you know how much running is involved in the sport.  Constant running up and down the pitch is inevitable, especially if you’re a midfielder. It is widely known that during professional matches players run marathon length distances.  It is very simple.  If you want to play the sport you better learn to love running.
Conditioning for the sport is crucial to stay in competitive shape.  Fitness is a major part of the sport.  Watch any soccer match and I promise you, you will never see a fat man or woman playing the game, it just does not happen. Just by playing soccer, weight is inevitably lost and people stay in shape, and their bodies look great.
As a young boy I personally hated running because I had real bad asthma.  If you have ever had an asthma attack you know exactly what I’m talking about.  Your breathing intensifies, and it becomes increasingly harder to find air.  I had the terrible experience of having to be rushed to the hospital to treat the attack.  The event was a nightmare.  Everything felt embarrassing from waiting on the sideline, to waiting for the doctor to call my name in the ER.
Once the doctor called me in and examined my lungs I knew it was bad.  After the examination I was given some medication and an inhaling device for when I had future attacks.  It’s very difficult to play sports and use an inhaler, especially soccer.  Eighty percent of the time you’re running in soccer.  If you’re a midfielder in the sport you’re running basically 100% of the time.  If you look at soccer players weight, you’ll notice that many of the players aren’t heavier than 175 pounds.  Unlike football more running is required more frequently.
To be able to run for long amount of time takes a lot out of the body.  An intense fitness regime that incorporates long distance running with short, explosive sprints will put any soccer player in the best position to be competitive.  The best training exercise for this is running hills.  Running hills is without a doubt the best training exercise that will give you the edge on your competitors.  The hill incline gives you an advantage compared to running without elevation.  Hill incline is much harder to run on, and also burns twice as much calories than traditional running.

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The New Era of Futbol

Football is the most popular sport in the world.  Whether it’s American football or football in Europe and South America, everyone loves it.  There’s a huge difference between American football and European/ South American football.  In the U.S., football is played with a cylinder shape ball where players are lined up and thrown a ball or tossed to run with it.  In European/South American football a circular ball is put in play, and two teams are forced to fight for it with there feet.  If an opponent scores in the goal and point is awarded.  Soccer is the common term to describe European/South American football.
Without a doubt or argument, soccer is the most played sport in the world.  All that’s needed to play the game is land and a circular ball.  The elegance of watching a soccer game is widely underestimated.  The imperfection of the game pose a finesse like ability required for players.  The amount of athleticism to play the game is immense.  No other sport runs more than soccer.  In professional soccer games often times marathon mile distances are ran between the teams.  Likewise; no other sport in the world is as imperfect as soccer.  So many different combinations and possibilities can unwind during a game, it’s truly something special to watch.
As of now, England, Spain, France, Germany, and Italy all have the best soccer leagues in the world.  It’s no mystery why Europe has such world class soccer.  If you’ve ever been to Europe you’ll see tons of kids on the streets playing soccer or kicking the ball around.  Unlike the US, kids are obsessed with the sport, it’s like a religion for everyone.  You can literally play the game anywhere in the world.  In the US, basketball is played all over the place in parks, schools, and community complexes.  Until the US has tons of kids in parks and streets kicking the soccer ball around they will not be top competitors in the world.  As an American it’s embarrassing seeing my country flounder in world play because the lack of skill is displayed.  The US has to compete against kids that have played in streets and beaches since they were three years old.  Soccer obsession needs to take over the country for any type of huge victory to take fold.
I remember traveling overseas to Spain when I was in high school.  Everywhere I looked on the sunny beach in Barcelona was filled with kids and adults juggling or playing soccer.  It simply clicked in my mind why watching these Spaniards on tv was so spectacular, they play so much they naturally get better all the time.  Also playing soccer on the beach is extremely difficult.  Not only is it harder to maintain ball possession, but the sand resists your body from running.   Countries or areas on the beach are perfect for beach soccer.  Countries like Brazil, Argentina, Portugal, Spain, France, and Italy all have beautiful beaches to play beach soccer on.  If you have the chance or burning desire to get better, you just definitely make a trip to one of these countries.

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Juggling the Soccer Ball

Whether you play soccer or not juggling the soccer ball is extremely fun.  Not only can you juggle the soccer ball anywhere, but if you’re a player it greatly improves touch, control, and dribbling skills.  That right there is a direct link between juggling the soccer ball and game time skills.  Not only do the professionals recommend juggling all the time, all day, but they themselves juggle all the time.  In countries like Brazil, juggling is simply another sport.
On Brazilian beaches people play games like soccer tennis or soccer volleyball against each other.  The amount of skill and touch necessary to play those games competitively is insane.  Soccer tennis, and soccer volleyball are exactly what they sound like.  In soccer tennis, a tennis net is set up, separating players from each other.  When the ball is kicked in the air, only one or two bounces is allowed in the game.  It’s essentially tennis but with a soccer ball using your feet instead of a racket.  In soccer volleyball, it’s essentially volleyball with a soccer ball using your feet only, and often played on a beach.
juggling soccer ball

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Soccer in Europe

As a young boy obsessed with everything soccer, Europe is the ultimate Mecca to travel to for soccer.  Nowhere else in the world is soccer played and spent more money on then Europe.  It doesn’t matter if it’s England, Portugal, Spain, France, Belgium, Holland, Germany, or Italy they all have tons of soccer.  Not only do those countries have the best soccer leagues but they also have kids and people playing the sport all the time.  The continent has become dependent on the sport.  Soccer is a religion for all the countries in Europe.  Without the sport many people wouldn’t know how to survive.
cold soccer
At a very young age boys are scouted by top football clubs.  If invited to football academies, the young boys will be given the opportunity to take advantage of world class soccer training.  Many of the super stars in today’s day and age have been through systems that mold and create world class players.  I have a friend from France that was in the PSG academy as a young boy.  I remember him telling me the coaches use to make the players juggle for two hours a day.  Along with that many hours would be spent on drills and scrimmaging.  Upon older  age the boys from football academies are given a chance to sign with a top team.  Some academies are known for simply building players and selling them.  It’s no surprise that some academies also groom their own players in there system.