Hand-Eye Coordination Exercises for Goalkeeper
Hand-eye coordination is an imperative skill for a goalkeeper. Deftness can mean the difference between winning and losing. Soccer and hockey goalies can benefit from basic physical development through weight-based workouts and strength training; but will achieve a higher level of excellence with a regular routine of coordination exercises.
Soccer Ball Exercise
Soccer goalkeepers looking to improve their hand-eye coordination and stretch their leg and back muscles will benefit from this soccer ball exercise. Stand with your knees slightly bent and legs shoulders-width apart. Grab a soccer ball and hold it in front of your body with your right hand. Bring the ball down between your legs, grabbing it from the front with your right hand and from the back with your left. From here, bend over and roll the ball back and forth between your legs with both hands. As you improve, start to perform figure eights with the ball, weaving it in and around your legs. Have your coach time you to improve your speed and quickness.
This handball exercise will improve your overall agility as well as your hand-eye coordination. Grab a small rubber handball and stand in front of a wall with it. Start by bouncing the ball with your hand against the ground and toward the wall. As the ball comes back at you, try and rally the ball back against the wall, hitting it harder each time. As you improve, try rotating hands to hit the ball against the wall. For additional difficulty, have a friend hit the handball at the wall. Having someone else hit the ball makes the ball less predictable and further tests your reaction speeds and hand-eye coordination.
Tennis Ball Squat Drill
This hand-eye drill will improve a hockey goalkeeper's agility and overall coordination. Grab two tennis balls and bend in a squat. Start hopping toward a designated finish line, your knees staying bent and your back straight. Once you have figured out how to hop properly, take the two tennis balls that are in your hands and start bouncing them while you hop. Start out by bouncing them at the same time and begin to stagger the bounces as you improve at the drill. According to Hockey Player website, this drill is perfect for developing hand-eye coordination while on dry land or in the absence of a proper hockey rink.
Jason Aberdeene has been a freelance writer since 2008. His articles have appeared in the "UCSD Guardian" and on various websites, specializing in teen health. An assistant at Kagan Physical Therapy since 2009, Aberdeene has a Bachelor of Arts in philosophy from the University of California, San Diego.