May 27th 2022
Written by The Coaching Manual
So, your season is coming to an end, and you're facing an extended period of time away from your players. The next time you see them may be after a summer of no soccer at all, which will affect their fitness and performance levels. But what if you had a way to ensure they practiced regularly in the off-season, and came back next season match fit and ready to go?
You may have heard about TopTekkers, the world-leading player development app from The Coaching Manual, and how hundreds of clubs (and many thousands of players) are improving every day with its help. But did you know that the free version of the app isn't just a couple of preview tutorials and not much else? In this article, we explore 8 ways in which coaches can use TopTekkers freemium to keep their players practicing over summer.
You'll need to make sure your players have downloaded TopTekkers and that you have invited them to join your team.
The freemium version of TopTekkers allows each player to unlock five skill challenges in the app. Therefore, if you plan to use TopTekkers with your team over the summer, it will be a good idea to make sure each player has unlocked the same five challenges.
Before deciding on the challenges you instruct your players to unlock, continue reading this list to help you decide how best to use TopTekkers this summer!
In TopTekkers, it couldn't be easier to set up a team development plan for your players. You can add five skills to your plan, name it whatever you want, and your players will see it when they log into their Player Portal. You can keep track of their performance individually or through the leaderboard function.
As a coach, you have visibility of how your players are performing on the TopTekkers app. You can see how often they are entering scores, and how they are improving, through use of the progression charts. Using this function is also useful for checking for areas in which your players may need to improve, helping you to plan your sessions accordingly.
Using the aforementioned Leaderboards function is great to see which of your players is putting in the effort away from the training field, but did you know that you can use the Filters feature within Leaderboards, to see how well your players are performing over a specific amount of time?
Using this, you could tell players that there will be prizes for the player who wins the most trophies, tries the most challenges, or improves their score in a particular challenge by the highest percentage. Then, using the Filters feature, you can see who has won each category over your chosen time frame.
Maybe you have certain players who are always trying to outdo each other, and you want their passion for healthy competition to carry on through the summer months. With TopTekkers, you can compare players' scores with one other - so if little Billy and Jack are always trying to tell each other who's the best, now's their time to prove it!
If your players are successfully using TopTekkers to keep fit and active over the summer, naturally you won't need to spend as much time focusing on improving fitness when your players return. Instead, you can get straight back into your plan for that season.
If, for example, you know that you're going to be focusing on possession, or playing through the thirds, you can set your players tasks involving passing and control. Or, if you know you're going to be focusing on creating width, you can focus on crossing and one-touch shooting.
There's actually nothing stopping you from creating a player account yourself! Why not incentivise your players by challenging them to beat your scores? What would encourage a player to practice over summer more than the prospect of doing more kick-ups than coach? Just make sure your ego is ready to be bruised!
Earlier in this article, we mentioned how easy it is to create your own training plans for your players. But do you know what's even easier? Using one we've created for you! The TopTekkers Winter Training Plan is automatically available for all players in TopTekkers - but remember, if your players are using the freemium version of the app, you will need to make sure that they have unlocked the correct five skills or else they won't be able to fully utilise the plan.
These are just some of the ways in which you can use TopTekkers to keep your players fresh over summer, but you may come up with your own.
It's easy to get started, just download TopTekkers and tell your players to do the same! Remember to create a team and invite your players to join it, that way they will see your development plans, and you can see their progress.
If you're interested in the many other ways that TopTekkers can help your club, why not fill out this quick form (below) and one of our team will get back to you to discuss.
With plans to suit everyone, The Coaching Manual is the perfect resource for soccer coaches who want to improve their understanding of coaching and create a first-class soccer learning environment for their players.