Why is Coordination Important in Soccer?

There are a lot of core factors that contribute to the overall completeness of a soccer player’s set of skills and abilities, and one of these core factors is the coordination between the different body parts of the player.

If a soccer player has good coordination, it means that they’re more likely to perfectly perform some soccer skills that players with less body coordination can’t perform

Soccer coordination is one of the most important skills to possess during a soccer game. Coordination is the base upon which many essential soccer skills are built. It is required for skills like agility, dribbling, accurate passes, heading the ball and many others.

As I have mentioned multiple times on this blog, soccer is a full body workout. As a soccer player, you are forced to use every part of your body to be able to perform well, and this will require a great deal of coordination between all of the body parts.

To emphasize the importance of coordination in soccer, here are some core skills that can never be performed well without proper coordination skills.

  • Dribbling
  • Kicking the ball accurately
  • Agility
  • Heading the ball
  • Many others.

The following are more details about why each of the above essential skills require coordination to be mastered.

1- Dribbling requires high body coordination skills.

Dribbling is a fancy soccer skill and it can help a player become much more effective during a soccer match. However, a soccer player’s dribbling skills will rely very much on how well they can coordinate their body movements.

To dribble past multiple opponent players, your eyes will have to keep going back and forth between looking in front of you and looking at the ball, your legs will have to keep making instant movements to keep control of the ball, and your shoulder will have to be used to protect the ball when needed.

In other words, you’ll need high eye-foot-upper body coordination if you want to become a perfect dribbler in soccer.

2- Kicking the ball correctly requires good eye-foot coordination

If you want to kick the ball in the most accurate way possible, you’ll have to master the eye-foot coordination needed for this to happen.

The few moments before you kick the ball, you’ll have to raise your head and look for your target and aim for it, then before you kick the ball, you’ll have to look at it to make sure that you hit it in the most accurate place possible, and to make sure that you don’t hurt yourself and kick the air instead.

This type of coordination between your eye and your foot is what allows you to kick the ball accurately. Knowing where to look while you’re kicking the ball is essential and this requires good eye-foot coordination.

3- Agility skills require good coordination.

As mentioned in one of our previous articles, agility is an extremely important skill for any soccer player no matter what their role on the field is.

However, for a player to be agile, they’ll have to practice their coordination skills very well.

If you don’t know what agility is, you can check our article here, but in short, it’s the ability to change your direction quickly without losing speed or momentum.

You can very easily tell why agility requires strong coordination between many parts of the body.

Let’s assume that you are running forward and you want to instantly change your direction and run towards the opposite direction. To do so, you’ll have to do the following:

  • Lean your upper body backwards and use your legs to decelerate as quickly as possible
  • Rotate your upper body towards the opposite direction while decelerating to win time
  • Rotate your lower body towards the opposite direction and accelerate as fast as you can.
  • Adjust your body to the new running direction and maintain your balance.

As you can tell, to be able to perform these steps as quickly as possible, you’ll have to have strong coordination between many body parts.

Executing each of the above steps exactly on time is essential and the better coordination you have, the faster you’ll be able to do it.

4- Heading the soccer ball requires a head-legs-upper body coordination

As a professional soccer player, you’ll have to head the soccer ball every now and then, which means that doing it correctly is a must.

To head the soccer ball perfectly however, you’ll need to coordinate different body movements. 

For example, let’s say that the ball is flying towards you and you’ll have to jump in order to reach it. Here’s what you’ll need to do in order to head it perfectly:

  • Keep your eye on the ball and jump on the perfect time to be able to reach it
  • While in mid air, adjust your body position to be able to receive the ball well
  • Once the ball reaches your head, you’ll have to position and rotate your head correctly to redirect the ball and give it enough force to reach its destination.
  • After you hit the ball with your head, you have to use your legs and possibly your hands to land on the ground properly to avoid any injuries.

Again, executing these tasks perfectly one after another and without any delays will require strong coordination between the upper-body, the legs and the head.

This makes coordination extremely important when it comes to heading the soccer ball.

There are a lot of other skills that require strong coordination to work, for example, a goalkeeper requires strong coordination between their legs and their hands whenever they want to jump to block the ball from entering the net.

I will stop the article here because I believe that by now, you already know the reasons behind the importance of coordination in soccer and that you should work on your coordination skills if you’re planning to be a professional soccer player or even just play soccer as a hobby like I do.

Here’s a summary of what you have just read.

Coordination in soccer is important for performing many core soccer skills. It’s like the backbone of many major soccer skills. If you want to become a professional soccer player, practicing coordination should be on your priorities list.