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Side-Volleys: Striking with Precision on the Run

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    Sports Tips

Side-Volleys: Striking with Precision on the Run

The side-volley is an exhilarating skill in soccer that requires precision, agility, and impeccable timing. Whether you're a budding player or a seasoned coach, understanding the intricacies of this technique can elevate your game. This article delves deep into the mechanics of the side-volley shot, focusing on body alignment, timing, and striking accuracy while in motion.

The Essentials of a Perfect Side-Volley

Body Alignment

Achieving the correct body alignment is foundational to executing side-volleys successfully. Here are the key points:

  1. Hips and Shoulders: Maintain a square posture, ensuring your hips and shoulders align parallel to the target.
  2. Balance: Distribute your weight evenly on your supporting leg, allowing for a seamless and controlled strike.
  3. Head Position: Keep your head steady and eyes glued to the ball, ensuring a measured approach.


Timely execution is critical for side-volleys:

  1. Anticipation: Predict the ball's flight path and adjust your stance early.
  2. Rhythm: Time your movements to synchronize with the ball's speed and trajectory.
  3. Contact Point: Strike the ball as it reaches the optimal height, usually around knee to waist level, for maximum control and power.

Striking on the Run

Delivering a side-volley on the move is a blend of finesse and athleticism:

  1. Footwork: Develop nimble and precise footwork to adjust swiftly to the ball's position.
  2. Momentum: Harness your forward momentum while maintaining control, transferring energy into the strike without losing balance.
  3. Follow-Through: Ensure your follow-through aligns with the direction of the target for accuracy and power.

Common Drills and Practices

Here’s a handy table of some common drills to enhance your side-volley technique:

Drill NameDescriptionFocus Area
Target PracticeSet up multiple targets and strike side-volleys at each.Accuracy
Moving TargetPartner throws ball while you run and volley.Timing & Footwork
Wall ReboundVolley against a wall and control the rebound.Precision & Control
Cone DrillsNavigate through cones and strike on the move.Agility & Coordination

Pro Tips from the Pros

  • Cristiano Ronaldo: Emphasizes the importance of lower body strength training to enhance the power and control in side-volley shots.
  • Megan Rapinoe: Recommends practicing with both feet to ensure ambidexterity and versatility on the field.
  • Coaching Insights: Focus on incremental improvement by breaking down the side-volley into manageable components during practice sessions.


Mastering the side-volley shot is a noteworthy achievement that requires dedication, practice, and an understanding of the technical nuances. By honing your body alignment, timing, and dynamic footwork, you can develop a side-volley that is both powerful and precise. Whether you're a player aiming to add a new weapon to your arsenal or a coach striving to enhance your Teams skillset, these insights will be invaluable on the journey to soccer excellence.

Remember, like any other skill in soccer, continuous practice and refinement are key. Now, lace up your boots, hit the pitch, and let's get volleying!