Five brief tips to play futsal & how futsal increases fitness.

Five brief tips to play futsal:

1) First touch and control – Try to recognise where the space is before you receive the ball and control the ball in that direction. Sometimes you might need close control in tight situations when you are marked, other times this can help start an attack by controlling into vacant areas of the pitch.
2) Positioning and movement – In a smaller game, finding space is vital. This might need you to do a dummy run before you get the ball by faking to go one way for one or two steps and then travelling back quickly. Gaining that extra yard can be vital!
3) Passing – Try to be clever with your passing in small-sided games by adding disguise and deception. Changing the angle of your foot at the last second or not looking directly at your team mate can create vital goal scoring opportunities that the defence do not predict!
4) Shooting – Chances might be hard to come by so make the most of these by either aiming across the goal into the far corners or taking the easy pass to a team mate to score if your angle is tight. Use your laces for power, inside of the foot for accuracy.
5) Communication – Making the game easy for your team mates can be done by simply telling them what is going on and providing information about the game. Have they got space to turn? Have they got a man-on? Helping to make their decision-making easier and quicker helps the team!

Five brief aspects to play futsal:

Studies have shown that playing small-sided games of football are just as good for your fitness as interval training. Therefore you will have the same high intensity interval training’s benefits:

1) Healthier heart – It is very difficult to push yourself into the anaerobic zone in a gym session. However, playing futsal you will do it without realising! So you will work on both the aerobic zone and the anaerobic zone, improving your recovery capacity.

2) Efficient – You do not need to perform a long gym session. Just playing one half (20 minutes) three times a week shows the same benefits as jog in the treadmill for one hour. With just 2 weeks you can improve your aerobic capacity as much as 6 to 8 weeks of endurance training.

3) Burn more fat – You burn more fat during and after the workout since that intense exertion kicks your body’s repair cycle into hyperdrive.

4) Agility – Playing futsal requires a lot of change of directions and speed. You will need to do a lot of fakes and faints to take the free space, so your agility, speed and quickness will improve.

5) Social Aspect – It is funny to play a game. Since you can talk and compete with other people. Competition is always nice. But as I said before your communication in futsal is essential.

 The S&C Coach for the England National Futsal Team, England National Beach Soccer Team and the Head Coach for Sheffield Futsal Club. During these last years I have been working as an S&C Coach in several teams and different sports (tennis, basketball, futsal, athletics, mountain bike, cycling, hockey…), in both high and grassroots level, in Spain and the UK.


Daniel Berdejo-del-Fresno