Football Blog

Playing Flag Football? Here are Our Favorite Practice Drills!

Here are five of the YMCA’s favorite flag football drills. Do them in your backyard and improve your skills!

1. Routes

At home or in a park, flag football players can practice running different routes on their own. Simple routes such as 5-yard curls, out routes and deep routes are good ones to practice. A 5-yard curl route consists of the player running in a straight line and then turning around to catch the ball. In an out route, the player runs about 5 yards in a straight line and then turns at a 90-degree angle running toward the sideline to catch the ball. And in a deep route, the player runs for more than 10 yards in a straight line and catches a pass down the field. At first, parents can have their children practice running the route without catching the ball. Correct footwork and distance is important when running routes. After players excel in the route running, they can have a parent or partner start throwing passes to them with a football. Using the different routes will help them get better with route running and be comfortable in an actual flag football game.

2. Passing

Passing is probably one of the more important components of the game of flag football. Lining up fingers correctly with laces on the football is key when throwing the football and enables the ball to rotate in a spiral when thrown. To work on pass accuracy at home, spread out cones or other objects in your backyard at different distances apart from each other. With a football, players can practice throwing the ball to the different cones and trying to hit the cones with the ball. This will help with throwing accuracy when players actually get to throw to a teammate in a game. Once players have practiced throwing to the cones and feel comfortable, they can have a partner or your parent catch their passes. They can run routes or just be at stationary spots to catch the ball.

3. Circle the Cone Drill

This is a good drill for agility and footwork. It uses a total of 3 cones or other objects. Line 3 cones up in a straight line about 5 yards apart from each other. Starting 5 yards from the first cone, the player runs to the first cone and does a circle around the cone. They complete a full circle around the cone while keeping the feet and body facing toward the second cone, then they sprint to the second and third cone, each time using the same technique. After going around all three cones, repeat these steps going back around the cones and finishing at the starting spot. This drill will help when running with the ball and trying to avoid defenders.

4. Pursuit Drill

Time to practice some defense! In this drill, the player gets to pull flags from an opponent while both run at full speed. For initial practice, the player runs as fast as they can to a cone 10 yards straight ahead of them. Once completed several times, the player can add a partner who wears flags around their waist. The partner will be stationary and then begin to run with the ball. Their goal is to run through two cones without getting a flag taken. The player’s job is to get a flag before the partner gets through the cones. Start the player about 5 yards from the two cones but at an angle. The player with the ball will start off 10 yards from the two and try to get through the cones without having a flag taken. The player who is running with the ball cannot do any spin or other moves to avoid getting the flag taken. You can then switch the roles of the runner with the ball and the defensive player.

5. Catching

To practice getting better with catching a football at home, players can work on throwing the football up in the air and catching it. A variation of this drill is to throw the ball in the air to a short distance to run and catch it. These drills help improve hand-eye coordination for the player. During a game, the player will be able to catch the ball at a more efficient rate in which they did before.

These drills are simple drills that players can work on in their backyard at home or at a park. They are designed to help improve the flag football player’s skills so they can excel in the sport while having a lot of fun. The more practice done at home, the better a player will get as you get older. Practice in all sports is the first step to becoming a better athlete and perfecting every player’s craft to be the best that they can be. 

These drills are simple drills that players can work on in their backyard at home or at a park. They are designed to help improve the flag football player’s skills so they can excel in the sport while having a lot of fun. The more practice done at home, the better a player will get as you get older. Practice in all sports is the first step to becoming a better athlete and perfecting every player’s craft to be the best that they can be. 

Looking for more football drills?

Find them right here on our blog.

Looking for even more ways to stay fit at home?

Stream workouts from home for FREE! For your use over the next few weeks, we have compiled a variety of at-home exercise options at no additional charge for our members. Check out our bank of virtual workouts for all ages and abilities here!

 

 

Category: Youth Sports