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Futsal Is A Great Way To Develop Ball Handling Skills

Dec 18, 2007
Futsal is derived from the Spanish and Portuguese words fútbol sala/de salón and futebol de salão respectively, which in English mean indoor football. Hence, futsal is a type of indoor football(soccer). It is the only indoor soccer game approved by FIFA. FIFA has been holding the Futsal World Cup since 1989. It played between two teams of five players each, including a goalkeeper. It comprises of two halfs of 20 minutes each. The pitch of futsal is similar to that of the normal soccer pitch only smaller in dimensions (25 meters minimum and 42 meters maximum in length), roughly the size of a basketball court. Futsal is different to the American five-a-side football. The main point of difference being that in futsal there is no dasher board. It is a much more suprerior game in terms of techniques and ball handling and is a complete skill game.

The ball used in futsal is smaller than the ball used in the normal soccer game and it is much heavier too. The weight of the ball does not allow it to bounce much. The ball has 30% less bounce as compared to the normal soccer ball. Hence, this forces the players to rely on their skills and not the bounce of the ball to shoot or pass the ball. As there is no dasher board to bang the ball against, the players have to rely on their passing and tackling skills. The pitch in futsal is small and maintaining ball possession becomes difficult, this enhances ones distributional skill. Futsal improves the mental ability of the players as they have to think a couple of steps ahead and have to use one touch passing at times, as there is less space for movement. It relies on quick thinking of the player and improves ones split second decision making abilities. Futsal helps in making a better team player, as it involves a lot of accurate player to player passing, which is necessary if the team wants to keep possession of the ball. Hence, it enhances the players close quarter footwork. It also helps in increasing ones shooting skills as the off target shots will not rebound against a wall and the goal is much smaller than the usual soccer goal. Many shots are taken during the game; this in turn boosts the player's confidence of shooting. The game of futsal also helps in improving the goalkeeper's skills, as he cannot touch the ball with his hands whenever the ball is passed back to him. The ball can be passed back to the goalkeeper only once during the entire course of the game. Futsal also decreases the amount of foul play, as the players are not allowed sliding tackles and shoulder pushes. There is also a five foul limit and players are not allowed to make a wall when the free kick on the sixth foul is being taken. This confirms the fact that futsal improves the mental state of the player with the physical side too.

Young players develop their reflexes, quick thinking ability and passing and shooting skills much better with futsal. It thus helps to improve the overall fundamentals of soccer with more effect. Some of the greatest Brazilian players like Bebeto, Pele, Ronaldo, Socrates, Zico owe their ball handling skills to the game of futsal. Even the current upcoming stars and skilled players like Ronaldinho and Cristiano Ronaldo too have played futsal in their youth.
About the Author
Bob Zenoti is a freelance writer of various on-line content. He has recently provided content for a soccer fan site for Cristiano Ronaldo .
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