How to Pass a Soccer Ball: Tips to Master the Art of Passing

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Written by Daniel Pena, Bachelors in Kinesiology and footballer: Learn More

How do you pass a soccer ball? In the beautiful game, passing a soccer ball is one of the most important and exciting skills to watch and perform. Passing the soccer ball is how a team keeps possession of the ball and moves the ball up the field in an attempt to score more goals than the opponents.

Everyone knows that scoring goals and seeing goals are the most exciting parts of the game, but sometimes the pass right before the goal is even better than the goal itself. In this blog I will be going over the different types of soccer passes, provide you with general steps on how to pass the soccer ball, as well as provide you with important tips to master the art of passing a soccer ball.

How to pass a soccer ballTypes of Passes in Soccer

One aspect of the game that can separate the best players from good players is how well they are able to pass the ball in various situations, with either foot, and with any surface of the foot.

These are the main types of passes to practice as an aspiring soccer player.

Firm Pass

A firm pass is executed with power and speed, ensuring that the ball reaches its destination without being intercepted. This pass is commonly used for longer distances, allowing players to bypass defenders and maintain possession.

Push Pass

The push pass involves using the inside of the foot to gently push the ball to a teammate. It’s a short and precise pass, often used in tight spaces or when quick ball movement is essential for maintaining possession.

Chipped Pass

A chipped pass happens by lifting the ball slightly off the ground to pass it over an opponent. This technique is useful in situations where a ground pass might be intercepted.

Lofted Pass

The lofted pass is executed by lifting the ball higher into the air over a longer distance. This type of pass is crucial for avoiding defenders and getting the ball to a player that is further down the field.

Forward Pass

A forward pass involves directing the soccer ball towards the opponent’s goal or towards an attacking teammate to advance the play.

Through Pass

A through pass is played into open space behind the opponent’s defensive line, allowing a teammate to run onto the ball. This is similar to a forward pass, but a through pass has to break through the defensive line.

Back Pass

A back pass is when a player passes the ball backward to a teammate, often used to maintain possession and create space.

Cross

A cross is a curved pass played from wide positions into the penalty area, typically for attacking players to attempt a header or shot on goal.

Give and Go Pass

A give and go involves passing the ball to a teammate and then quickly moving into open space to receive a return pass.

One Touch Pass

One touch pass is a quick and immediate pass made with a single touch of the ball.

Backheel Pass

A backheel pass is executed by striking the ball with the heel of the foot.

Short Passes

Short passes involve playing the ball to a nearby teammate with precision and control. These passes are crucial for maintaining possession in close quarters and building up the play in a controlled manner.

Long passes

On the opposite side of short passes we have long passes which are exactly what they sound like.

How to pass a soccer ballImage by Jeffrey F Lin

Steps for How to Pass a Soccer Ball

Different types of passes will require slightly different steps and technique, but in general, they will all follow very similar steps.

Aim with your planted foot

When preparing to pass a soccer ball it is important to make sure your plant foot, the non kicking foot, is aimed in the desired direction that you want the ball to go. The inside of the plant foot should be facing the soccer ball and should be closely placed next to the ball, but not too close or too far.

Open your passing hip

As you are about to pass the ball, it is also important to open your hip on the side from which you’re passing. This allows for a smoother and more natural movement, which leads to a more accurate pass.

Have the Right Body Position

As you approach the ball, it is important to have the right body position which means you have the knees slightly bent, you are on your toes, and you are leaning slightly forward over the ball. This posture helps maintain balance and control during the pass because if you lean backwards too much the ball will go in the air.

Keep the Ankle Locked

You may have heard this phrase before “lock your ankle.” But how do you know if you are properly locking your ankle? To properly lock the ankle, and create a strong rigid and spring-like structure with your ankle, instead of a wobbly ankle, soccer players have to learn how to apply fascial tension to their feet, toes, and arches.

This is the most important part of passing a soccer ball because without a strong ankle your passes will not come out how you want them too.

Contact the Middle of the Ball

Some passes will require hitting the bottom of the ball, such as the chipped and lofted passes, but in general, most passes will require you to hit the middle of the ball so that the ball stays on the ground and reaches its desired destination.

Follow through

Finally, make sure that you are following through with your pass. The follow through, which is basically you using your momentum to help you get more power, is a great way to improve the effectiveness of many types of passes, but not all passes will need as intense of a follow through as others.

How to pass a soccer ballImage by Markus Spiske

Tips for How to Pass a Soccer Ball

Now that you know the different types of passes and have read the step-by-step instructions, let’s talk about some tips to improve your passing.

Choose the Right Type of Pass

The first step for passing a soccer ball better is to know the different types of passes and understand what passing technique you need for different situations.

Visualize the target

Before making a pass, visualize your target on the field and try to see the finished pass in your head before it happens in real life.

Utilize both Feet:

The better you get at passing with both feet, the better your overall game will become. Becoming ambidextrous is one of the fastest ways to level up your game.

Consider the Defender’s Position:

Be aware of the defender’s position, and choose passes that minimize the risk of interception. This is where having various passing abilities in your toolkit comes in handy.

Adjust Power and Technique for Short Passes:

When making short passes, adjust the power and technique to ensure the ball reaches your teammate with precision. Short passes are crucial for maintaining possession in close quarters, but they need to have enough power to reach their target and not too much that the ball is too hard to control.

How to pass a soccer ball Image by Md Mahdi

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the best soccer training program?

The best online soccer training program and soccer app is Football Entangled. There is no other program like Football Entangled on the market and this community, much more than just an app, will help you get closer to making your dreams a reality.

How to pass a soccer ball with more confidence?

The best ways to train your soccer passing abilities to gain more confidence include:

Conclusion

In conclusion, knowing how to pass a soccer ball is one of the most important skills for soccer players to master when playing the beautiful game. In this blog I went over the most common types of soccer passes, steps for how to pass a soccer ball, as well as provided you with tips on how you can start improving your passing abilities today.

So whether you are a beginner or an advanced player make sure to go outside today and develop your skills using the tips on this list to get one step closer to making your dreams come true.

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