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Alan Hylands
How To Get Started Playing Soccer

Soccer is the world's favourite spectator sport and not only that, it's also played by millions of people of all ages, skill levels and genders all over the world.

We'll be having a look at what you need at the most basic level to get started playing soccer, what equipment you'll need, where you can play, what the basic object of the game is and who can play soccer.

Difficulty: Easy

Time Required: 10 minutes

Here's How:

Who can play soccer?

At it's most basic level pretty much anyone can play soccer. Young children from around 3 years old can be coached into small teams and enjoy the fun of kicking the ball and running around with their friends. Likewise, there is no upper age limit to playing soccer either, if you have any mobility at all and have enough stamina to wander around and kick the ball then you can take part. Male, female, young, older - soccer truly is the people's sport.

What do we need to play soccer?

Soccer is such a widespread sport around the world for one simple reason - all you need to play it is a small area of land and a ball, there are no expensive equipment requirements as in American Football or cricket and for this reason soccer is as easily played on the plains of Africa and the back streets of Buenos Aires as it is on the grand stadiums of London, Paris, Rome or Berlin.

What if I don't have a soccer ball?

The history of soccer is littered wth anecdotes from its greatest proponents on the world stage having learnt their skills in underpriveliged backgrounds by kicking anything remotely shaped like a football. A rolled up ball of paper, tied with string or sellotape, an orange, a blown up pig's stomach or any other football substitute will suffice.

Maradona could ball juggle golf balls in his prime showing just how flexible the game really is.

Where can we play soccer?

There is no need to find an officially marked out soccer pitch with lines and proper goals, most kids grow up playing soccer wherever they find a spare piece of ground, be it a back garden, a street corner, a field or am empty car park.

If you get involved in organised soccer then official pitches for training and matches will be provided but a lot of fun can be had with a ball, a park and jumpers for goalposts when playing with friends.

How many people can play in a soccer game?

Officially soccer games involve 11 players on each side including one goalkeeper each with a range of substitutes depending on the competition being played in.

For unorganised kickarounds there can be no limit so you can play with as many or as few per side as you have friends or fellow players to join in.

Small sided games such as 5 or 6 a side have become very popular for both fitness and recreation in most countries.

What is the main object of soccer?

Simple really, kick the ball between the opposition goalposts more times than they kick it between yours. Whoever has scored more goals by the end of the game is the winner.

When it's broken down, this is as simple as soccer gets.

Why should I play soccer?

There are many reasons why people should get involved in playing soccer, either informally with friends or as part of an organised club or league.

Firstly, to improve your all round fitness. Soccer will involved using a wide range of muscles as you run around after the ball and chasing down your opponents as well as a cardiovascular workout.

The main reason though is for FUN! Soccer is a simple game to understand and is easy for all ages to enjoy.

What You Need:

Some friends to play with

A piece of ground to play on

A ball or suitable substitute

Alan Hylands

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