Specialty Skills

Specialty Skills

Specialty Skills Classes are the only classes associated with any of our skills programs or skills packages, no matter what semester, time of year or location. Players can choose from an assortment of these specialized classes (35 in total divided among 6 essential categories–Shooting, Dribbling, Trapping & Passing, Defending, and Juggling) that improve tactical awareness, fitness with the ball, creative skills, and overall confidence. At the core of these offerings is a skill deconstruction method that helps players develop at their own pace.

Shooting Mechanics

Shooting Mechanics specializes in shooting anatomy. We'll deconstruct and review every aspect of shooting in detail: visualization, approach, plant foot positioning, setting the frame, angle of release, turning radius, rotary momentum, follow-through, and critical velocity.


Shooting on the run

Scoring goals is not just a matter of Ready, Set, Go. You have to practice all three things together on the run if you are serious about putting the ball in the net!


Finishing Crosses

Finally a "finish" players enjoy (vegetables and homework excluded). From the acrobatic to the mundane, this class is for the true Center Forward who will be challenged every which way to convert a cross to a goal!


Bicycle and Specialty Kicks

A fun and inspirational class using a state of the art 12’’ thick dive mat, teaches secrets of specialty finishing including: bicycle (overhead) kicks, scissor kicks, banana kicks, in-swingers, corner kicks, and set pieces from outside the box!


Perfect Penalty Kicks

A class designed to guide players through the process and pressure associated with penalty kick taking. Everything from stepping up to volunteer for this high stakes moment to choosing the correct corner and technique and cadence is reviewed.


Free Kick Curving

Swerve it. Curve it. Spin it. Dip it. Players will learn the centrifugal force, the critical velocity, torque, and correct point of contact as well as other mechanical principles that make up the twisting forces required to cause rotation, and defy the laws of gravity and physics in pursuit of a golazo!


Corner Kicks

It's not quite a shot, and it's not quite a pass, yet you're far in the corner on small patch of grass! This class details how to place that corner kick right between the upright sticks! Like poetry in motion!


Volley & Half Volleys

Sometimes you have to reach out for the ball bravely with a spirit of abandon, but there is a sure-fire technique for the brave who understand that connecting with the ball out of the air, before it lands, or at that awkward moment when it’s on its way up, is the only way to score. Volleys–the V stands for Victory!

Dribbling Sub-categories

There are several Dribbling sub-categories to choose from. Avila Trainers meticulously break down each phase of the move into its elements so that players can process it at their own pace and then speed it up, even beginners.

1   Explosive high speed open field

2   Stopped in tight space maneuvers

3   Possession moves to draw players in

4   Creating the appearance of quicker feet

5   Rhythm breaks moves confuse opponents

6   Line Theory–using and manipulating angles to beat players

7   Transverse plane moves: for slow player who like to dribble

8   Combinations: slalom-type moves w/ flair & elegance for inspiration and confidence

9   Moves to use when fatigued

10   Rotary momentum moves


Dribbling is an Attitude

This class is just what is needed to help athletes who are not as assertive as they could be. It's a class for any skill level focused on showing players how to take responsibility for attacking and penetrating versus a mentality of passing the ball off. We walk the player through the mental process of premeditating the decision to dribble before receiving the ball, and subsequently pouncing with conviction and speed!

Works on following Dribbling sub-categories: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10


Supernova

Players attempting this signature Avila Combination Move, quickly discover the only way to pull it off is to use their mind's eye. Because you spend nearly the entire spinning slalom of a move not actually able to see the ball. Supernova–a move that teaches vision, is one bright star in our great array of Specialty Classes.

Works on following Dribbling sub-categories: 8 10


Speed Dribbling

Sometimes winning comes down to the realization that it's up to you alone, that you need to take the ball yourself directly, and do that as fast as humanly possible, if you want to win the game. This class eliminates the elaborate complicated maneuvers and tricks. Instead, it gets down to very basic common denominator of all Dribbling, namely quick cuts left and right–done with the inside and outside of the foot. 

Works on following Dribbling sub-categories: 1 4 9


Cyclone

Storm warning: this players' favorite and aptly named move, called The Cyclone, has the spiraling destruction of a storm. As one player said it best, "stay out of its path, defenders - or risk being found strewn in pieces!"

Works on following Dribbling sub-categories: 8 10


Ball Brushing

This signature maneuver is the hallmark of elite midfielders the world over, and for good reason–anyone can hit the ball hard but not everyone can caress it. Ball Brushing Class specifically addresses this simply to learn technique, which trimmed correctly, can really punctuate a performance. 

Works on following Dribbling sub-categories: 2 3 5 6 7


1v1 Practice

1 v 1 is in fact at the core of this wonderful 11v11 game, known as Soccer. All 22 players are basically fighting little tiny battles happening for 90 minutes. By keeping the ball close to your feet, attacking  and exploiting the space and using a change of pace to beat the defender, you can be prepared for 1v1’s all over the field, and they come in many different forms.

Works on following Dribbling sub-categories: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10


Black Hole

It's named BLACKHOLE because of the illusion it creates of disappearing space. What's hard about the BLACKHOLE is the timing and range of motion on the ankle required to pull it off. It helps with improvisation.

Works on following Dribbling sub-categories: 2 3 5 8


Wrap Around

There is a fun addictive aspect to this move. We often show players the move and they will attempt it 20 or 30 times within a few minutes essentially coaching themselves. This move is similar to BLACKHOLE with the added benefit of helping players escape  and get a shot off. It touches on several sub-categories of Avila Dribbling:

Works on following Dribbling sub-categories: 2 3 5 7


Fast Feet

There are just two ways to fool an opponent when dribbling–move the ball or move your feet. Moving the ball requires skill and that's hard enough you'd think, but moving your feet quickly, it turns out is a lot harder! Fast Feet pulls no stops in its mission, using agility ladders & cones, cans & mats as well as other props for coordination and balance to encourage your player to sharpen things up.

Works on following Dribbling sub-categories: 1 2 4


The Art of Nutmegging

This fun class takes a scientific approach to Coach Eryck's favorite skill (and laughable source of pride), Nutmegging! Tricks of the trade are revealed in this can't-miss class for the diehard! A nutmeg (or tunnel) is a technique used in soccer, in which a player rolls the ball through an opponent's legs. This can be whilst passing to another player, shooting or occasionally to carry on and retrieve it themselves. You'll know it when it happens!

Works on following Dribbling sub-categories: 2 5 6 7


Passing Mechanics

This staple of a class takes a sports science approach to the universal mechanical principles that govern all movement and meticulously deconstructs every aspect of the stroke path of a pass, including: the approach, plant foot position, point of contact, angle of release, vertical alignment and the follow-through! Don't pass it up!


Perfecting Aim

Trade secrets of pinpoint accuracy are revealed in this crucial class for players who struggle to get the ball on target and for those who want to take their range to the next level!


Soccer Golf

Soccer Golf is a fun, creative hybrid game we use to get players to improve their aim with a soccer ball. As with real golf, it takes but one swing to elicit a common reaction which is to immediately think, "wow, how hard this seemly simple task is." And that is what we are after. Improved passing and distribution.


Rondo

The original "monkey in the middle" drill, also known as a Rondo in soccer, is from before the time that formal soccer was even invented. So it deserved to make it into our Avila Passing repertoire, since only the best passers excel at this timeless exercise!


Possession Play

This class is important because Possession is a type of genius that merits training and is a missing link for many players who often have skill but don’t seem to gel with the “unit” well. At its core is the application of quality passing through better Movement, Spacing, Distribution, Technique, and Connectivity, also known as the the 5 Pillars of Possession at Avila.


Hip Mechanics/Rotation

Also known as Hip Rotation as described in the diagram below.

Hip Mechanics is a class conceived from our annual Play Better Immediately Clinic in which sideways on positioning (proper hip positioning) is used to help players control passes received under pressure. The class helps them not only be more involved in plays, but allows them to continue plays effortlessly. This type of training cuts down on a player's occurrences of unforced errors, because proper hip mechanics leads to receiving the ball on the foot when it is positioned with more surface area facing the ball. Players with sensory integration issues, for example, flourish once they develop these habits. The aim of this class is the emergence a more elegant and confident player.

Trapping & Receiving

One of our most crucial classes, Trapping & Receiving is the most underrated skill of all of them. That all elusive first touch is really evidence, judge and jury of how fast the synapses of sensory integration are really firing in our soccer brains!


High-ball Trapping

What goes up must come down with style. And while we're at it, apply some of the mechanical laws of the universe too. High-ball Trapping requires precision technique and is perhaps the most underrated of all soccer skills, especially if your position is Center Back Defender. Yet, this class is a must for any player who has come to realize the truth–that the game is played in the air. That out of the air (before it makes landfall) is where an assertive player must first contact the ball. If you are bold enough to fight for it there, this class can teach you how.


First Touch Strategies

This is a class about thinking ahead while being present in the moment by paying meticulously attention to the reception of the ball. It's about pre-meditating and setting oneself up, before the ball even arrives, to do the glorious, the amazing, the STRATEGIC thing your team needs from a leader.

No-Fear Defending

A class that teaches defending tactics, techniques and attitudes. Players will gain clarity on notions such as jockey and delay, stabbing at the ball, shepherding, foot and hip positioning, aggressive/assertive play, decision making, and yes, even slide tackling—using our state-of-the-art 12" thick dive mat. This class is a must for kids who don't "get it" and for players who are ready to accept the responsibility of contributing when they are not actually in possession of the ball.


Jockey & Delay

Delay is a Defensive principle that slows down the opposition attack to allow cover to get behind the pressure on the ball. The Defending player applies immediate pressure on the ball, not necessarily stealing it or making contact, they act as if they are going to rush the player, but then slow down and even back up. They arc, get low as they approach, and get the left/right foot forward to push the attacking player on their weaker foot, jockeying the player to delay.


Vector Defending

While one defender presses the ball, the other should cut off the space behind by taking a position goal side and slightly to one side of their teammate, taking the shape of a vector symbol. But who presses the ball? Who covers? And why? If you miss this class, there's no defense!


Tackling/Marking

Tackling is very much about bravery, whereas Marking is really about soccer IQ. Marry the two in one special Avila Class and the result is a player who chooses their battles wisely and wins them fiercely every time!


Goalie Training

Our Goalie Class provides specialty training that focuses specifically on technique. Learn the mechanics of diving and how to make the all-important "second save." Our 12-inch diving mat allows you to train without fear, and in turn you will develop the ferocity and skill needed to defend the goal. This class is designed for those who wish to work hard in their pursuit of goal-keeping mastery.

Juggling for your Record

This class is for:

  • those who enjoy quantification
  • For those know the sheer joy of being able to say  they beat their personal best.  
  • For those kids who, the minute they arrive at the Avila facility, rush to come find us to report their latest number.

Trick Juggling

Hey, lets not forget the fun! This class promotes “two-footedness” and creative potential. We’ll dare to deconstruct clever, artistic maneuvers that have been attempted and honed by both “playground legends” and famous professional players alike.


Pop-ups

This whimsical class addresses the age old soccer dilemma–how do pick the ball up if you can't use your hands? Pop-ups is about doing just that, but with flair and confidence of a BALLER, using feet in creative ways to kick start juggling.


Soccer Tennis

Soccer Tennis can be played in many different ways–as singles, doubles, in threes or fours, or larger groups–especially if a real soccer ball is used. Many different objects can serve as a net. If no objects are available then two grids can be laid out separated by a dead zone. The number of bounces and touches can be adjusted. The serve can be changed from a service from hand to kicking it off of the ground. The game is a great replacement to juggling.