One of the biggest myths about five-a-side football is that it’s easier to play than conventional football. In some ways it is, but in so many others it’s actually tougher. That’s the reason why there have been so many new players looking for where to play 5 aside football in London with a lot of bad habits that they truly need to break. Just because the pitches are smaller, the games are shorter, and only five men are needed on the field, some would think winning couldn’t be all that difficult. Soon enough, many of these newbies realise that five-a-side isn’t a walk in the park after all.
Anyone looking to improve their five-a-side skills tremendously should remember, first and foremost, that for all their similarities, five-a-side and traditional football are as different as night and day. As we mentioned, misconceptions about five-a-side football lead to bad habits, and these bad habits hamper one’s progress and make it hard to move forward when it comes to their skills and abilities.
9 Bad Habits To Drop In Five-a-Side Football
It doesn’t matter if you’re new to the sport and want to improve or if you’re hoping to turn professional. The following nine bad habits should be dropped if you want to take your game to the next level.
1 – Playing Too Tired
Five-a-side football is a much faster game than its eleven-man variant, and that’s something not everyone realises until they start. And even with games lasting 20 to 30 minutes at most, it can still get pretty exhausting. It goes without saying that you shouldn’t play tired, and feel free to utilise the rolling subs rule to get yourself a breather.
2 – Staying in One Place
While it’s alright in regular football to stand around in one place at certain points of the game, you can’t afford to stand still in five-a-side. You need to be in constant motion and create space for yourself or your teammates, you need to keep that ball in motion, and not sit on it. If you just stand there, you’re essentially useless to your team.
3 – Giving Up on the Game
In regular football, your team’s pretty much done for if you’re down by three goals or more with 10 minutes to go in the game. But in five-a-side football, there’s still quite a lot of chance for your team to make a mighty comeback even if you’ve got just a couple of minutes remaining.
4 – Standing Still, Part 2 –The Goalkeeper
Important as it is for a goalkeeper to be active in conventional football, it’s twice more important to be active if you’re a five-a-side goalie. If that’s your position, don’t wait for the action to come to you, instead be alert during every second of the game.
5 – Sole Specialism
Everyone loves scoring goals, especially those who may be used to playing forward in a conventional football setting. But five-a-side demands that you drop the striker badge and be an all-rounder in terms of skills. Focusing too much on the attack will only make your defence suffer.
6 –Getting Easily Distracted
It’s so easy for momentum to change hands in a five-a-side game, and it’s also very easy for a seemingly hopeless offensive to turn into a real chance for a goal. How does this happen? Usually when a player or two get distracted even if just for a couple of seconds. Be laser-focused on the game as anything could happen at any time.
7 – Being a Hothead
Let’s admit it – it can be very frustrating if your team has lost the lead in the second half after dominating in the first. Tempers are bound to flare in such situations, but if you lose your temper, you’re practically kissing the game goodbye. Just remember that it’s also common for opponents to get lax if they’ve got the lead – that’s something you can take advantage of when trying to get the lead back.
8 – Being Self-Centred
It’s great to be the team’s best player, the man of the match, the player who scored the winning goal, but some players take it a bit too far and play the game for their own stats and accomplishments. If you’re that kind of a player, no one will want to be on your team, and your reputation will only suffer for it.
9 – Having a Slow Reaction Time
Reacting to things too slow can be fatal in five-a-side and it’s a habit you’ll need to get rid of as soon as possible. Not only do you have to move quickly, you also have to think quickly, and learn how to plan your next move mere seconds in advance. If your reaction time is slow and your instincts for the game remain weak, you might not be cut out to make it to the next level skills-wise.