|No Step Drill
1. Focus on the plant foot and the distance it is placed from the football. Generally, it is a foot’s distance from the spot
2. After distance from the ball has been established, check how deep the plant foot is placed. Off the ground kickers should have the spot in line with where the plant foot’s arch and heel meet. 1-inch block kickers should have the spot in line with where the plant foot’s arch begins.
3. With chest slightly over the ball as if walking down a slight decline and simultaneously leaning away from the ball with the arm on the plant side parallel with ground for counter-balance, get leg lock to toe and place foot behind ball to confirm that ball will come off the quarter surface for an optimal strike.
4. With hips and higher remaining constant, take a full backswing with kicking leg and explode through football at leg lock a half yard downfield.
5. On contact with ball, kicking leg should be locked out, struck with the quarter surface, hips and chest facing target, with body slightly falling forward for positive momentum. Repeat repetition several times without football to visualize a good repetition with football.
|One Step Drill
1. With an exaggerated step back from the ball and on the target line, take a 90-degree step from the target line and set up for the kick.
2. Once kicker is set, lead with kicking leg and point kicking foot, hip and shoulder towards the plant are, not the ball.
3. Place 2/3 of body weight on the kicking foot and get still.
4. First movement is with the plant leg towards the plant.
5. Explode through ball and use your No Step Drill technique to finish a perfect rep.
1. Incorporate this after you are comfortable with a One Step Drill.
2. The triangle is used to show the kicker where the ideal finish is on a good rep.
3. The triangle has 3 lines, the target line (running through the ball all the way through the center of the uprights), the finish line (a line a yard and a half down field) that gives the kicker an incentive to finish through the ball for increased distance and height) and the no-no line (a line that runs from the plant foot that meets the finish line at a 45 degree angle) which shows the kicker that the closer he finishes to this line, the more his ball will fall off, often resulting in a miss
|Full Step FG’s
1. Everyone has their preference on these, but the standard technique is a 3-2
2. Three consistent walking steps back (no lunging or over-striding.)
3. 2 steps over at a 90 degree angle from the target line (these should be just outside hips width, do not over-stride or straddle these steps)
4. The stance should be directed to the plant area, not the ball. Have the plant foot slightly in front of the kicking foot with weight evenly distributed; once feet are set, confirm that upper body is still and eyes are focused on the spot, not the center or the ball.
5. Once holder’s hand leaves to receive snap, the kicker’s first reaction should be to take a catch step towards the plant in case of a poor snap. The following step is the most crucial, this must be a normal stride and following the first step towards the plant (do not step towards the ball). Finally, you are in the One Step Drill position, your explosion step. Use the technique from the One Step Drill to finish a perfect rep.
|4 Step Kickoff Explosion Drill w/ Kickstart
1. Kickers should walk through their full step KO approach and identify their explosion area (where they are full speed); this is usually the final third of the approach.
2. Mark the transition step (from middle to full speed) and begin the drill here; it is roughly 4 walking steps from the ball at a 45-degree angle approach.
3. Once they are set, they need to explode to the plant spot and kick the ball at leg lock on the bottom third of the football. In addition, for optimal height the plant depth should be as follows: the spot in line with the beginning of their arch.
4. On ball contact, the kicker should explode up and out, clearing the hurdle that is a half yard in front of the ball.
5. The kicker should explode down field and land on their kicking leg first. This may seem a little awkward at first, but it will ensure that the kicker is in fact exploding up and over the hurdle.
|Directional Sky and Squib Kicks
|Coaches and players establish where the target is on sky and squib kick situations based on the week’s scouting report. Once this is established, the kicker can make any adjustments to his kickoff approach to place the ball on his flyer’s destination.
|The KO is difficult to coach up. There are several styles, and many are effective. As a general rule, if a kicker is 6’0, he should try a 10-6 approach (heels at 10 yards from the ball and 6 steps at a 90-degree angle from the spot). The shorter the kicker, the less room needed to approach the ball and the less 90-degree steps needed from the spot. For example, a kicker that is 5’9 may want to experiment with a 9-5 and build from there. Next, look for any uncomfortable steps (over-striding or stuttering). If this is happening, the kicker is setting himself up either too close (stuttering) or too far (over-striding) from the football. Furthermore, the approach should be toward the plant spot from beginning to end. The kicker’s approach should be roughly 8 steps. The first few steps should be slow and under control, followed by a jog and progressively building up to a light sprint. Finally, the last two steps should be explosive (refer to 4 step explosion drill).
|Onside Kicks with Flyers
|Coaches and players establish where the sideline target is during an onside kick situation based on the week’s scouting report. Once this is established, the kicker and the KO team can work on timing and execution.
1. The drill is run in the following way: 2 Kickers competing at same time with 1 coach charring the kickers (1 point for a near miss or a ball that is driven low enough for a block and 2 points for a ball that is near the center of the uprights).
2. Kickers will begin at the 15-yard line (25-yard field goal) of either hash and move back on the hash as follows: 30, 35, 40, 45 and 50. If they make their 50-yard attempt, they will have a 55-yard attempt. If kicker makes their 55-yard attempt, they will get a 60-yard attempt and so on until they miss. Once this happens, kickers will switch hashes (if kickers started on left hash they will switch to the right hash and vice versa).
3. Once kickers have completed both hashes, and a tie breaker is needed to name a winner, they will come together in the center of the field at the 35-yard line (45-yard attempt) and alternate reps in a sudden death situation.
|Once a week the specialists should review their options in the case of a bad snap. Different scenarios should be covered as anything can and will happen in the worst of times.
|Play Clock Drill
|The play clock drill is used to put the kicker, snapper and holder in a game situation. Line up kickers on the sideline and assign each a number (the snapper and holder can be used for all kickers). For example, if you have 3 kickers, number them 1 through 3. Once each has a number place a ball anywhere on the field and call out a kickers number. As the coach calls out a number, he should begin counting down from 24 to 0. The kicker that has his number called should run onto the field with the snapper and holder, establish a spot for the holder, communicate to the holder when he is ready, and get the snap off before the play clock runs down to 0.
|Group w/ Snapper and Holder for Timing
|Time for reflection on the week and any final adjustments before the game.
|Make sure there is a soccer goal post or baseball pitcher cage in front of the kicker at 5 1/2 yards. Snap under the cage. Rush players in from corners. Add bags as a lane to distract kicker or coach, use fog horn to distract kicker as he is kicking- look for over striding -no follow-through kicker must explode through all kicks.
This drill’s focus is:
1. Catching the snap clean
2. Molding the ball (spinning the laces and attaining the proper hand placement on the ball)
3. Placing the ball over the punters kicking leg at sternum height (drop table).
Punter is in his normal stance to receive the snap and no steps are taken. This drill should be done at game speed working to develop quick hands and muscle memory. Efficiently catching and molding the snap will improve get your punters get off times.
|One Step Drop
This drill is designed to eliminate the chance of mistakes in first two elements of punting (ball reception and the first step) and focus on:
1. The drop.
2. The timing between the release of the drop and the second step.
3. Proper step with the plant leg.
This drill should be done on a line to ensure drop is released over the punting leg and the plant foot does not cross over. Punter’s starting position for this drill will be as if the punter has just received the snap and taken their first step. (for a right-footed punter) Right foot should be on the line. With the right foot forward, the ball molded and on the drop table the punter will step with his left foot and simulate their drop. The ball should be released just before the left heal hits the ground. This timing ensures the drop will be at the proper height when the punters foot strikes the ball (about knee height).
|Two Step Drop
Starting as if you have already received the snap (with your kicking foot on a line and ball on your drop table) go through your normal progression with out swinging your leg through. It is simply two steps and drop. This drill’s focus:
1. Eliminate over striding and crossing over your steps.
2. Drop consistency.
3. Develop muscle memory.
Start with your kicking foot on a line to ensure your drop stays over your kicking leg and to identify if your plant foot is crossing over in front of your kicking leg. Focus on making this drill look the same every time. This drill is designed to help identify and fix bad habits if done correctly and repeated often it will develop proper muscle memory.
|Two Step Explosion Drill w/ out the ball
A derivative of the two-step drop drill, starting from the same position only this time you don’t have the ball. Simulate your normal punting progression and swing your leg as if you are punting the ball. This drill’s focus is:
1. Exploding off your plant leg
2. Develop body control
3. Warm up your leg.
Start out at about half speed and work your way up to game speed with your punting progression. You are essentially doing mental reps, but it is an explosion drill! Concentrate on keeping your hip and shoulders square to your target as you explode up and through the ball.
|One Step Punting
Begin in the same position as if you are going to do the one step drop drill but now you will be punting the ball. This drill’s focus is:
1. The drop
2. Not crossing over with the plant step
3. Driving off the plant foot and getting your hips up and through your target line at a 45-degree angle
4. Leg swing.
Most punters do not utilize their entire body when punting, this drill will help them utilize their entire body increasing hang time and distance. Subsequently this is not an easy drill for most punter for just this reason. Make sure the punter focuses making good contact and turning his punts over, not trying to kill the ball. This is a technique drill and should be used to warm up the punter’s leg.
|Full Punts down a Line
This drill’s focus is:
1. Proper steps
2. Drop placement
3. Leg swing
4. Utilizing your hips
5. Body control.
The object is to be able to punt the ball and have it land on the same line as your kicking leg. Body control is essential to becoming a consistent punter. Punting down a line will help identify if you are crossing over your steps, not swinging straight up and through the ball, and if your hips and shoulders are not finishing in line with your target.
|Directional punting allows your coverage team to cover specific areas of the field and limits a dangerous return man’s ability by using the sideline as an extra defender. The ideal directional punt is placed between the numbers and the sideline with good distance and hang time. Utilize landmarks in a stadium to pick your target line. Don’t set yourself up too wide or you will be walking out side of your protection and give the outside rusher a shorter path to block your punt. The sideline referee always stands 50 yards from the line of scrimmage and will provide a consistent target for you pick out every time you line up to directional punt.
|With or without the ball working on situations you will see in games is always good practice. Hurry up, taking a safety, punting out of the back of the end zone, letting the play clock wind down to waste time, and 11 man rushes just to name a few. Mentally preparing your punter for these situations and to be comfortable when placed under pressure in unique situations is a valuable asset to your special teams and should not be overlooked.
|Pooch (Inside the 20) Punts
The only changes a punter should make to his normal punting approach is:
1. Raising the drop table
2. Driving their hips up through the ball at a more vertical angle.
3. Raising the drop table will increase hang time and decrease the ability to punt for distance.
Directional pooch punting is ultimately the best for two reasons:
1. Shrinks the coverage area for your flyers and coverage team increasing their ability to prevent touchbacks
2. Pooch punting directional gives the punter more distance from the line of scrimmage and they can use the sideline to prevent returns.
|Bad Snap Drill
Use a simulated snap to more accurately work your punter. This exercise will help punters learn to react to bad snaps and still get off a good punt. Focus in this drill should include:
1. Move your feet don’t reach for a snap outside your body’s frame
2. If the punt takes you more than two steps either right or left work back to the middle of the protection to avoid getting a punt blocked
3. When a bad snap occurs, directional punting is not an option, get the punt off! Try and get a punt off with good hang time and force a fair catch or give your coverage team a chance to make a play.
|Once a week, the specialists should review their options in the case of a bad snap. Different scenarios should be covered as anything can and will happen in the worst of times.
|SOCCER BALL DRILL
|Use a simulated snap to more accurately work your punter. This exercise will help punters learn to mold the soccer ball and float it to his foot. If at any time the ball is not floated over the player’s leg and is pushed inside or outside the body will result in the soccer ball to shank and not go forward down field.
|Make sure there is a soccer goal post or baseball pitcher cage in front of the punter at 5 1/2 yards. Snap under the cage. Rush players in from corners. Add bags as a lane to distract punter, use fog horn to distract punter as he is punting- look for over striding -punter must short step and explode through punts.