small sided games (SSGs)
why play small sided games? (from USYouthSoccer)
1. Because we want our young football (soccer) players to touch the soccer ball more often and become more skilful with it! (individual technical development)
2. Because we want our young soccer players to make more, less-complicated decisions during the game! (tactical development)
4. Because we want our young soccer players to have more individual teaching time with the coach! Less players on the field and less players on the team will guarantee this! (need to feel worthy and need to feel important)
5. Because we want our young soccer players to have more, involved playing time in the game! (more opportunity to solve problems that only the game presents)
6. Because we want our young soccer players to have more opportunity to play on both sides of the ball! (more exposure to attacking and defending situations)
7. Because we want our young soccer players to have more opportunities to score goals! (pure excitement)
Best of all, the game is simple, can be played without adult involvement and it's FUN!
These are the reasons why we adults must foster "Small-Sided Games" in our youth soccer programs. The "Small-Sided" environment is a developmentally appropriate environment for our young soccer players. Its a FUN environment that focuses on the young soccer player.
These games are either SSGs in their own right or soccer-like games that involve two or more teams of players:
1 v 1 no tackling
a scientific study into the benefits of small sided soccer from the University of Abertay Dundee (2006) SSG Comparison: 4v4 vs 7v7 vs 11v11 for U-12's, by Grant Small (.pdf, 382kb)
why SSGs? (from US Youth Soccer, .ppt)