Fun Practice Games for Youth Football

Switch the knee as needed. The thrower should be able to pick up grass following the throw. So why do coaches put kids through laps and extensive conditioning drills? Instruct one player from each team to run out for a pass. This drill improves agility and quickness. I used to coach that way, too.

Concentration Drill

Single-Knee Drill

Part of learning how to play football is engaging in various drills, such as those to perfect throwing and catching skills, or ones that improve overall quickness and coordination. There are endless drills to choose from, including those specific to certain positions, such as quarterback or wide receiver. Find fun drills that match the abilities of your players as well as drills that are more challenging.

Instruct a player to kneel on his throwing side knee and place the football on the ground in front of him. Have the player grab the ball with his throwing hand and lift it using the throwing hand only. Once the ball is high in the air, instruct the player to throw it to a receiver with an emphasis on the follow-through.

The thrower should be able to pick up grass following the throw. Switch the knee as needed. This drill builds arm and wrist snap strength. Divide players into two teams of six or less, though each team should have the same number of players. Assign a quarterback position to a member of each team. Instruct one player from each team to run out for a pass.

Once the player catches the pass, have him run quickly to a cone that is 20 yards away and throw the ball back to the quarterback. Players that drop the ball have to start all over; the first team that uses all of its players wins. Losing players must run laps. This drill improves player concentration, particularly if they are feeling sluggish or tired. Set up cones or spray paint in a square formation with one cone or paint mark in the middle. The formation will look similar to the five faces on a set of dice.

Rarely does a football player run in a straight line for more than 10 or 15 yards. So why do coaches put kids through laps and extensive conditioning drills?

Work hard, win the game in the fourth quarter with great conditioning — blah, blah, blah. I used to coach that way, too. Gassers are almost always done at the end of practice, and the kids know that. So how hard do they work during that last 30 minutes leading up gassers? Do they give it everything they have? Do they leave percent of their effort on the field? Or do they do like you did in high school and save up some juice to survive gassers?

The answer often is, they conserve energy. So when players do gassers, how much better football shape do they get by running in a straight line at half-speed?

The best conditioning drills keep fun and football situations in mind

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