<![CDATA[Casual To Pro Football Coaching - Blog]]>Wed, 12 Dec 2018 05:09:46 +1100Weebly<![CDATA[Attacking Basics - Definitions & Principles]]>Sat, 11 Nov 2017 22:13:37 GMThttp://casualtopro.com.au/blog/attacking-basics-definitions-principlesPenetration - in possession of the ball, the team attempts to play through gaps between the defenders or play the ball into the space behind. This gives attackers the opportunities to exploit space from passes that go forwards or sidewards and move defenders out of position.

Support - It is important to have lots of movement off the ball in order to support players on the ball. Key points are to manage the distance, angles and timing to receive passes or get into positions

Width - providing options (laterally) across the pitch. This creates larger gaps between defenders which in turn creates opportunities to exploit the space and play forwards. The idea is to make the pitch big and look for gaps to either play through or around the opposition.

Mobility - movement on and off the ball. This will provide support in the attack and may include rotation, exploiting space and penetrating the defence at speed.

Creativity/Improvisation - If a team becomes predictable they become easy to defend against. Coaches can encourage creativity from players in order to combat this. We like to have players want to attempt skills in different positions like stepovers, drag backs and Maradonas so that it helps develop their football creativity and see things from a unique perspective.

We hope this was a helpful article for all you parents and players who want brush up on the fundamentals of attacking. We may use this as homework one week for our grassroots and elite development classes so be ready!

All the best,
The Coaches from Casual to Pro
<![CDATA[The Importance of Playing with Two Feet]]>Thu, 09 Nov 2017 00:00:40 GMThttp://casualtopro.com.au/blog/the-importance-of-playing-with-two-feetStrong & Weak Foot

Before we get into the meat of the article we need to address something, strong and weak foot. As coaches we acknowledge players can have a ‘favoured’ foot but it's important for us in sessions for us not to use the terms strong and weak foot but right and left foot or possible other foot. This is because then it gets in the minds of (especially young) players that they can even have a strong and weak foot rather than just their right and left which should be of equal ability.

Why having two feet is vital to being the best player you can be


Being able to use both feet is crucial to beating defenders and being a defender. If a player obviously favours one foot it makes it clear to a defender which way a player is more likely to go when dribbling. They can then pressure him to go on his ‘weaker’ side making it easy for a defender to either shuffle him away from a dangerous player or make a challenge on him.


Having both feet is vital to shielding and protecting the ball. When your back is to an opposition player you need both feet to be able to control the ball so you can maintain a safe distance between the ball and the opposition player. You can switch control of the ball between feet so when a player tries to slide/sneak a leg around the side of you when shielding you can control on the further foot or make a pass with it.


If a player favours one side more they will often try to stretch their leg into awkward positions to reach/control the ball. For example the player favours their right and the ball is on their left, they will have to run/wrap around the other side of the ball to dribble/control it rather just simply shifting it with their left.


This should be self explanatory but for the sake of it. Using both helps with quickness of thought and actions. It means the ball can be played from more angles and positions by a player and helps execute a play faster because they don't need to consider how they're play a ball awkwardly with their strong foot or consider risking a bad touch with their weaker foot.

​All the best,
​The Coaches from Casual to Pro
<![CDATA[Fluids For Training & Match Days]]>Tue, 07 Nov 2017 23:02:01 GMThttp://casualtopro.com.au/blog/fluids-for-training-match-daysUtterly imperative for any participant in any sport in particular soccer! Most of the time you will find yourself already under the hot sun and then on top of that you will running about working up a sweat. Here we are addressing the basics of hydration and fluids in training.

Being hydrated starts the night before. Surprisingly you need to elevate your water levels the night before so you can wake up feeling fresh and ready for the work ahead! As just mentioned this best done with water and nothing too special in terms of fluid.

On training and match days we recommend the following types of fluids:
  • Before
    • Water
  • During
    • Water
    • Sports Drinks - Not soft drinks e.g. Coca Cola
  • After
    • Water
    • Sports Drinks
    • Milk - Unflavoured ideally but sometimes chocolate is nice :)

Water beforehand is great as you should still be hydrated from the night before and you don’t need the benefits of our other recommendations yet.

Sports drinks during training are great because they have added micronutrients and carbohydrates which need to be replenished to keep you energised and focused on training. A lot of vital micronutrients like magnesium get sweated out during training. Additionally they are often lighter on the stomach and more easily absorbed than the following post-training/match option.

Milk should only be drank as a replacement fluid post training/match as it quite heavy on the stomach and can cause stitches. A major perk of it though is that it has vital proteins to help muscles recover from the hard work that was just put in.

All the best,
The Coaches at Casual to Pro

<![CDATA[Pre & Post Training/Match Nutrition]]>Tue, 07 Nov 2017 10:03:15 GMThttp://casualtopro.com.au/blog/pre-post-trainingmatch-nutritionWe've had a few enquiries from very keen parents recently about nutrition and diet and it got us thinking that it would be a great idea to put together an article on how to best feed your kids or yourself to get the best physical results from playing football.


Optimal timing for food is to have a meal about 2 - 3 hours before playing/training and a small snack about 1 hour before.

These foods should fit the following characteristics:
  • Rich in carbohydrates - for energy
  • Moderate in Protein - for muscles
  • Low in fat - to stay lean

Meal suggestions

  • Chicken Stir Fry
  • Turkey Bolognese
  • Grilled Chicken Wraps
  • Pasta w/ tomato sauce & tuna
  • Porridge or Oatmeal w/ Honey
  • Unsweetened milk and muesli
  • Baked beans on toast
  • Poached/Boiled eggs on toast
  • Oat based smoothie
  • Baked potato w/ beans/tuna/salad

Snack suggestions

  • Fruit salad/platter
  • Muesli
  • Peanut butter sandwich
  • Weet-bix
  • Porridge
  • Toast w/ Jam

Post Match - Recovery Time

Ideal timing for this is within 30 minutes of finishing a session but definitely no later than 2 hours after. The best way to hit this timing is to 'pack a snack’ and plan ahead so you eat right away and speed up recovery.

The Big Three R’s of Recovery

  • Rehydrate - Drinking water/fluids will help transport energy and nutrients throughout the body
  • Replenish - Eating will replace the nutrients lost during the exercise
  • Regenerate - Resting helps to repair the damaged and broken down muscles from exercise

Food Options

  • Grilled chicken wrap/pita filled w/ salad
  • Sandwiches filled w/ chicken, tuna, cheese, honey, banana or peanut butter
  • Bagel - filled w/ Greek yoghurt or Jam
  • Bananas - possible in a smoothie w/ milk
  • Yoghurt + Cereal Bar - Ideally 0% fat Greek yoghurt with high protein (Chobani Yoghurt is ideal)

Drink Options

  • Recovery Smoothie w/ mostly carbohydrates and protein - low fat
  • Milk or a high protein/low fat milkshake not a sugary and fatty you get from cafés
  • WATER - The most important of all

This article is a great start for people new to nutrition but if you would like some more sophisticated suggestions for those more advanced come and get in contact with us.

All the best,
The Coaches at Casual to Pro
<![CDATA[Communication Basics in Football for Students]]>Tue, 07 Nov 2017 09:42:28 GMThttp://casualtopro.com.au/blog/communication-basics-in-football-for-studentsSimilar to the article which has sparked this one recently we as coaches at Casual to Pro had a sit down conversation about how we can improve our communication channels with the students when we are coaching them. As highlighted by the coaching manual - a fantastic resource for parents and aspiring coaches - sometimes we as coaches spend so much time around people who've been involved in football for so long we forget there are people who don't speak our 'language’.

Some of the students would have picked up on this just by attending classes but we often use terms with them that have specific meanings on the football pitch. This is how we can quickly provide direct instructions to players so they perform an action as soon as possible. Some examples of this would include 'time’ which means we want the player with the ball to know to slow down and look around as they currently have some time another would be 'man on’ which means there is an opposition player on them about to tackle them prompting them to either shield or pass the ball.

Attached to this article there is an image (The Coaching Manual, 2017) which has most of the important calls/instructions we would like the players to familiarise themselves with. We may even have it as a homework quiz one week to see how much they remember and then test how well they use them to let their teammates know what is happening on the pitch.

<![CDATA[long time no speak... big plans underway]]>Tue, 05 Sep 2017 05:06:25 GMThttp://casualtopro.com.au/blog/long-time-no-speak-big-plans-underwayHey everybody,

It's been while since there has been a post in the blog section but for those of you whom are bothered enough to read it you will receive some early insight regarding our future plans!

Casual to pro football coaching is planning on expanding to new areas. Yes!! It is finally happening thanks to all your loyal support, hours of training and dedication and positive energy you give we're opening up new areas!

We are looking to expand into the Greenacre area (Gosling park, commencing 1st of October) and Epping area. We've undertaken a lot of work to recruit the best possible coaches in those for our classes which we believe all parents and children will be happy with.

Furthermore in those areas as well as Burwood for your convenience we have launched our online payment and registration system! We will be for next term (term 4) moving exclusively to online payments which will allow to focus more on our classes on training days and have you relax knowing you don't have to fiddle about with any cash, cards or paper forms.

Lastly, after the introduction of the idea of our Elite Development class which has gone well especially the idea of having class kits (shirts and shorts) we will be looking to introduce to our regular classes a kit for them to wear as well. We have seen improved performance and behaviour in students which ultimately aligns with our goals to develop students from casuals to pros.

Best regards,
The team at Casual to Pro Football Coaching
<![CDATA[Development of Young Players - 10 Commandments for learning efficiency ]]>Tue, 28 Mar 2017 02:23:51 GMThttp://casualtopro.com.au/blog/development-of-young-players-10-commandments-for-learning-efficiencyIt is recommended you read the previous pieces leading up to this post so as to get the most out of this individual post.
  1. Acquire good habits. As a coach we must try and suppress the urge for a student to perform an incorrect action to a piece of stimulus and then redevelop them so they perform the correct action to the same stimulus.
  2. Confront players with problems that are within their capabilities. We must not overload them with too complex problems
  3. Help players learn to recognise the result of every play immediately after the action is over
  4. Teach new aspects of the game within the parameters of ones that are already known
  5. Practice the individual elements of a situation to connect the stimulus and response
  6. Review and repeat material frequently. This will help memory retention of what you are trying to teach both as coaches and parents.
  7. Vary the exercises and games. The younger the player the less amount of time they will be able to concentrate on a single exercise
  8. In addition, mix up the content. If you are running a session, don’t do all passing, you must help them understand all aspects of the game, dribbling, shooting, positioning, etc.
  9. Motivate your pupils and players, be it through praise or a choice of activities that interests them
  10. Stimulate both the body and the whole mind. Make it so that students can get creative and engage both hemispheres of the brain which in addition to getting students to think more they will naturally retain more information so they can recall it later.

This is the final piece in the series, thank you all who have kept up with the posts and all your feedback has been appreciated! If you have any recommendations for our next series message us either on Facebook or email in.

All the best,
The Team at Casual to Pro.
<![CDATA[´╗┐Development of Young Players - Promoting Active Participation]]>Mon, 27 Mar 2017 07:35:14 GMThttp://casualtopro.com.au/blog/development-of-young-players-promoting-active-participationLet’s make it clear, with young players we cannot drill into them a particular capacity, we need to help them UNDERSTAND all aspects of the game. In a practical sense, this means as parents and coaches we need to be able to demonstrate to them how to approach something rather than just telling them how to do something. Evidence shows that students can only recall 19% of what their coach/teacher taught to them 3 months ago through just verbal instruction but an astonishing 32% when demonstrated to them.

In addition, what we can do as teachers to enhance the learning process is have them more engaged by promoting an INTERACTIVE session. So we let them generate the information on their own but with our help they will remember a truly incredible 65% of what they learned 3 months ago. 

Part 5 will be addressing:
The 10 Commandments for Learning Efficiency

All The Best,
The Team at Casual to Pro
<![CDATA[Development of Young Players - Using Inefficient Coaching Methods]]>Sat, 25 Mar 2017 05:20:02 GMThttp://casualtopro.com.au/blog/development-of-young-players-using-inefficient-coaching-methods“The tragedy of coaching young players focuses on the fact that many coaches may know a lot about the game, but they don’t know their young pupils.” – (The late, great, Horst Wein)

Many coaches out there have obtained knowledge from a course that was either out of date or simply not practical. This results in their young pupils either receiving knowledge that is not very relevant or simply not delivered in a way they can understand that engages them.

We need coaches that are constantly evaluating and changing their methods so that they adapt to the changing needs of their students. A methodology we strongly encourage among our coaches at Casual to Pro.

Part 4 will be addressing:
Promoting Active Participation

All the best,
The Team at Casual to Pro
<![CDATA[Development of Young Players - Complex Activities]]>Fri, 24 Mar 2017 04:22:00 GMThttp://casualtopro.com.au/blog/development-of-young-players-complex-activitiesINTRODUCING COMPLEX ACTIVITIES TOO SOON
You have to understand that even players at a club level make a mistake every one in three actions. How can we then expect to introduce a complex movement to a child where it is proven that the younger the player the higher their chance of a mistake. In fact, for players between the age of 8 and 9 just playing in 7 on 7 make less than 50% of successful actions.
We need to make sure that when they make mistakes firstly, they are not blamed for these mistakes. Additionally, that we introduce them slowly to new tasks, we make exercises progressive in difficult so as to lower the frustration and the demand we put on them physically and mentally.

If you’re a parent reading this who has been to one of our sessions you would know we don’t focus on any exercise for more than 20 minutes. We need to give then both physical and MENTAL breaks so as to maximise their output while also allowing them to enjoy themselves without overexertion.

So parents and coaches alike please understand your young children are still exactly that despite them now having a ball at their feet.

Part 3 will be addressing:
The use of inefficient coaching methods.

All the best,

The Team at Casual to Pro