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Maryland Soccer Speed Drills

November 1, 2008 | Featured in the November/December 2008 Issue

If your scissors need sharpening for precise cuts on the earth’s groomed surface, heed advice from Barry Kagan, men’s soccer speed stylist at the University of Maryland.

“Pro Agility is the most common drill that tends to be tested,” Kagan claims, “while [the 50-Yard Shuttle] is a little longer and is more pure athleticism.” Kagan uses both drills to gel speed for the Terps. “We’re big believers in consistency,” he says, “[and] it’s all about the culture with guys committed to getting done what needs to get done.”

Avoid butchering the field with sloppy cuts, and commit to the following speed drills once a week.

Pro Agility Drill
Setup: Place three cones in a line 5 yards apart

• Begin in athletic stance at middle cone
• Sprint to right cone and touch ground with right hand
• Sprint 10 yards to left cone and touch ground with left hand
• Complete drill by sprinting back to middle cone

Sets/Reps/Rest: 1x4-6 with full recovery
Coaching Points: Maintain a low squatted position while breaking from athletic stance // Avoid standing up too tall during cuts // Don’t take any false or unnecessary steps

50-Yard Shuttle
Setup: Place two cones ten yards apart

• Using normal running mechanics, sprint back and forth five times (50 yards total)

Goal Time: 12-12.5 seconds each set
Sets/Reps/Rest: 1x5 with 45-second rest
Coaching Points: Alternate cut leg for each 10-yard sprint // Accelerate through last turn // Focus on proper running mechanics

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