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King's Court


  • To create a fun, yet challenging environment.

  • To teach the correct way of diving on the side for goalkeeping.


  • To start with, everyone is practicing the side dive technique and there is no pressure.

  • Then the "battle" begins. The top field is designated the King's Court (coach decides the top and bottom).

  • Ball must be rolled, not thrown.

  • Goals only count if they are "clean" (must not touch the cone).

  • Service must be from a position where the attacker has his/her feet touching the goal line.

  • Each "round" goes for 2- to 3-minutes and a winner is declared (coach needs a tie breaking method - "paper, scissors, stone") and the changes are made as follows: The winner in the King's Court retains the #1 position. The loser goes all the way to the bottom court. The other winners move up one place. The battle recommences.

  • With large groups have two or three King's Courts with 3 or 4 fields per sub-group. Keep it fun and therefore downplay the "winning at all costs" attitude.


  • Set out as many goals (3-yards apart) as there are players (goalkeepers).

  • Two goalkeepers per area, one with a ball, both kneeling up facing one another four yards apart.

  • Important that the players kneel in an upright position and not sit back on their heels. Feet/toes should be on the imaginary goal line.

  • Balls must be rolled along the ground to the side of each keeper, not straight, but not so far to the side that the receiver cannot roll over and collect the ball.

  • After receiving the ball the keeper should roll back to the kneeling position.



  • Hands and arms should be pushed reach forward, palms towards ball, to stop ball in front of body.

  • Hands and arms should relax into a "crooked" position as the pace is taken off the ball.

  • Upper knee should be drawn in comfortably across the body as the ball is received.

  • Lower leg should remain loosely trailing.

  • Head and upper shoulder should be drawn over and above the height of the ball.

  • "W" hand position is employed, but with ball "trapped" by the upper hand on top of the ball and lower hand behind the ball and so use the ground as the so-called "Third Hand." (See graphic above)


  • If you are just starting to use these Lesson Plans refer to the King’s Court progressions in the U7 Lesson Plans.

  • Getting the Side Diving technique right is very important.

  • Insist on “correct” technique.

  • As the players improve they will have “progressed” themselves and therefore will be challenging one another more.

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