Winter doesn’t need to be an offseason. It's a bridge between the fall and spring seasons, keeping players’ minds and feet on the game year-round.
Garrett Keys, coach at Lehigh Valley United, explains what his team does during the winter months:
“We are lucky enough to have an indoor facility that we can always use, so we train about twice a week, with the option of third training session that revolves around some type of fitness or technical practice. We try to keep them active like this year-round, so we don’t lose anything during the regular season.”
Andrew Santos, coach at FC Copa, adds his advice on the importance of winter training:
“With my groups, we train twice a week indoors. One of them being normal football, while the other is futsal, with those games on the weekend. Additionally, I provide the players with a winter packet, where players follow a daily workout plan which covers technical work, as well as speed and agility training. This provides them with several outlets to stay active, sharp and fit through the indoor months. We play futsal as a team. It is not mandatory, but about 75% of them play futsal during the winter. Others do other kinds of winter sports. As a team though, we compete in the EDP Futsal League NJ, as well as State Cup for futsal and regionals.”
Futsal is one of the many options that EDP provides during winter months.
The EDP Futsal league is played from mid-December to the end of February and features some of the most competitive and high-quality play on the East Coast.
Garrett Keys, coach at Lehigh Valley United, provides some important insight on the skills futsal can help develop:
“Futsal creates a lot of technical ability on the ball because you’re playing in tighter areas and you’re more likely to get in 1 on 1 situations. Plus, the speed of play is faster and the need to recognize different pathway patterns to get around defenders is quicker too. Overall, just quickness on the ball is developed a lot through futsal.”
While, Andrew Santos, coach at FC Copa, adds the following comments regarding futsal's role in the development of key soccer skills:
“Futsal is a huge factor in the development of a player I believe. The small-sided environment combined with the speed of the game will always challenge players and develop their skills to translate to the outdoor game. There is no hiding in futsal. You need to be technical, be effective and be sharp not only in your play but in your decision making too. In the early stages of the players learning the game of football we build the foundation of the technical player solving 1v1 and 2v1 situations which is perfect in futsal because the players see those moments and scenarios a lot on the futsal court.”
For more information on EDP Futsal, please visit edpsoccer.com/futsal
For more information on EDP Indoor, please visit edpsoccer.com/indoor
Founded in 1999, Elite Development Program Soccer (EDP) is one of the largest organizers of youth soccer leagues and tournaments in the U.S. EDP operates youth leagues for boys and girls ages 9-19, conducts a Futures program for players ages 7-11, and operates U20/23 men’s and women’s leagues. EDP also runs over 20 tournaments each year. The key emphasis for EDP’s leagues and tournaments is its Pathway to College™ programming which enables soccer players to reach their full potential with an emphasis on attending college. More than 3,500 teams participate in EDP’s leagues and more than 170,000 players compete in EDP tournaments annually. For more information on EDP, visit www.edpsoccer.com.