Hit the Jackpot with Soccer Pinball!

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 Equipment Needed: A DuraCoat Coated-Foam Ball (7”) for each student, music 

This game consists of three parts: “dribble and freeze” drill, “pinball” kicking, and finding a “new ball”

“Dribble” Drill: 

The game begins with the teacher yelling “DRIBBLE” and each student must use the inside of their feet to dribble their ball. On the word “FREEZE”, the students must trap their ball by placing their foot on top of it. This needs to be done gently to not squish the ball. Students could work on different dribbling skills that have been taught in prior classes. Once they have the drill, add music. When the music is playing (about 30 – 90 seconds), they dribble and when it stops they must trap their ball within 3 seconds. 

“Pinball” Kicking: 

Explain to the students what a pinball machine is and how our class is going to become a human pinball machine. Every time the teacher yells “PINBALL” everyone must kick their ball and then find another ball to kick. The objective during the Pinball kicking time is to have every ball in the gym moving continually until the teacher yells “FREEZE”. Students should never kick the same ball two times in a row and must keep looking for a ball that is stopped or slowing down to kick next. Once they understand the rules, add music and have them kick until the music stops. When you stop the music, yell “NEW BALL.” (Have students kicking for about 45 – 90 seconds.)

Safety concerns: remind students to communicate while kicking so they do not attempt to kick the same ball. Also remind them to not kick a ball at another student (students will get hit occasionally and that is why we use the foam balls, but we should not intentionally kick a ball at another student).

Skill Cue Reminder: Remind students to always step next to the ball with their non-kicking foot each time before they kick it (plant foot steps next to the ball and pointing where you want the ball to go). 

“New Ball”: 

On the command “new ball,” students then run to find a new ball that is near them. Students must then trap the ball with their foot on top of it. Encourage students to work together to see how short of time it takes to have everyone with a new ball. Work on communication and teamwork. 

Put All Three Together:

Now do all three parts together to make a game. Possibly add the following rule changes each time they find a new ball: 

1. Kick with only your strong leg only. 

2. Kick with only your weak leg only. 

3. Kick with a different leg each kick. 

4. If your kick goes higher than your waist, stop and do 10 jumping jacks before kicking another ball. 

This game can be used as a warm-up activity when students enter the gym. 

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