Friday, October 21, 2016

Don't Break a Leg! The Most Common Injuries In Soccer And How To Prevent Them

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To tell a soccer player to break a leg before a game might not be the best way to send him off because soccer players can literally break a leg during an intense match. The lower extremities are most prone to injury and the common ones are ankle sprains, ruptured ligaments, pulled hamstrings, groin strains, and metatarsal or shin fractures. There is nothing more upsetting for an athlete than sitting out an entire season because of an injury.

Conditioning the body not only improves an athlete's performance, it also reduces the risk of injury. Proprioceptive training is one way to reduce one's proclivity to injury as the exercise improves one's sense of mobility, alignment, and balance. An example of this type of exercise is to stand on a wobble board or Togu trainer and hold and maintain your balance for a few seconds.

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Strengthening the hamstrings with exercises such as the Nordic Ham Curl or Gym Ball Hamstring Curl can help in preventing pulled hamstrings. Likewise, enhancing gluteal (buttocks) and core strength might help give the person more control over knee movement which in turn can prevent the dreaded rupture of the anterior cruciate ligament (ACL). Single-leg deadlifts, lunges, and squats are popular exercises for the glutes while planking (prone and side) is a great way for developing the abs for better balance.

I am Naman Wakil, a sports science student, and I love soccer. Follow me on Twitter for more updates on sports training and soccer.

Tuesday, October 11, 2016

In a League Of Their Own: Inspiring Success Stories In Soccer

Legendary soccer players are always inspirational to amateurs and other professional athletes in bringing out the best in their game, and possibly become superstars, too. But certain football players, some of whom are not the biggest names in the industry, are heroes to their own following because of the tales behind their success— which usually includes the struggle that came before the triumph. Here are some of the most inspirational success stories in soccer:

Victor Moses. Nothing less than admiration can be given to someone who came out of tragedy to become an established player in the Premier League. Moses' missionary parents were murdered during the Kaduna riots in 2002, and he traveled to England to seek asylum.

Charlie Austin, Sergio Torres, Miroslav Klose. These three have one common denominator: they all started as brick-layers and brick-makers to earn a living before being discovered by different soccer leagues.

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Lionel Messi. Messi had been afflicted with a growth hormone deficiency in his youth. His family could not afford the expensive cost of treatment and it almost jeopardized his chances of joining any club, until Barcelona funded it because of his prodigious soccer skills.

Hi! I am Naman Wakil and I am passionate about international soccer. Subscribe to my blog here for more soccer stories.

Wednesday, August 10, 2016

Messi’s Contract With Barcelona Is a Priority For The Whole Team

Leo Messi’s future is a big concern for those in Barcelona. The club has been renewing and extending his contract year after year, and it seems that he is the team’s “hot property.” His next contract, if people are still keeping count, will be his eighth with the club.

Barcelona’s President, Josep Maria Bartomeu, who has been to New York City recently to open the club’s office in the U.S., has confirmed that his team is looking into renewing contracts of their top players. Of course, the Argentine soccer superstar is one of the players they plan to keep for a long time.

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Messi joined the club in 2001, and has represented the team for more than 350 times. In that time, he has scored an amazing 314 goals. While the five-time Ballon d’Or awardee is in contract with Barcelona until 2018, Bartomeu is stern with his statement that Messi has a place with the team for as long as he wants to play.

The team is confident that the 29 year-old Messi will shoot down offers from other clubs and will stay loyal to Barcelona. According to the club, they have “no limit for Messi,” and will always be supportive of his game.

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Well, it will be shocking if Leo Messi turns down this big contract. After all, he rose to football fame because of Barcelona.

Learn more about the world of soccer and its star players when you follow me, Naman Wakil, on Twitter.

Monday, July 25, 2016

Kicks And Tricks: Fundamental Skills In Soccer

Soccer is a unique sport because players require better use of their feet than their hands. There are several fundamental skills an athlete must master to become a great player. Here are some of them:

Passing and receiving

Since soccer is a team sport, one of the important skills to learn is to pass and to receive the ball to and from your teammates. The right timing and proper control of the ball are needed to master these basic skills. A simple rule to remember is to always keep your eye on the ball.
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How do you win a soccer game if you can't shoot the ball into the goal? You don't simply aim and fire, you also have to make sure the competitor goalie won't be able to catch your shot. This skill requires more than just power and accuracy but also precision and strategy.


Dribbling keeps the ball in play. Simply put, it's running with the ball before a pass or a taking a shot at the goal. Control is required for this skill, and this is also where speed and agility come in handy.
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Tactics and strategy

Soccer isn't just about kicking the ball to and fro around the field. To score a goal, you don't just simply try and shoot without any idea what you're doing. To conserve energy and maximize efficiency on the field, you have to strategize and play to your opponent's weakness. Each player should have the wits to make the split-second decision to either shoot or pass, and this requires tactical knowledge.

Hello! I'm Naman Wakil and my favorite sport is soccer. Find out more about the beautiful game by following me on Twitter.

Tuesday, June 21, 2016

Don’t Mess With The Messi: Reasons Leo’s Still The Best In The Game

Lionel Messi is undeniably one of the best players on the pitch. At his young age, he has celebrated milestones that make his opponents quiver in fear. Here are reasons Leo deserves the world’s respect and recognition.
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Impressive track record

Leo is a top goal scorer in El Clasico and La Liga, and the UEFA Champions League. He also won the most Ballon d’Or awards, scoring the most goals in a single season. There’s so much more we haven’t seen, and yet, his benchmark is already unreachable.

Scoring and assisting prowess

Messi is gifted in scoring goals, but he makes great assists as well. His ability to assist well shows his great leadership skills and unselfishness on the pitch. After all, soccer is a team sport.
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 Mental strength

Messi’s mental strength is at par with his unbelievable physical intelligence. He is able to stay calm even under pressure, and has not shown unwanted behavior in the game. Some seasons ago, Atletico Madrid planned a strategy to get physical with Messi. Messi remained composed and focused in helping Neymar score a win instead of putting up a fist fight.

Messi’s only turning 29 this year, and hopefully, he’ll have more years ahead of him for his career. A lot of people say he’s already in his prime, but I believe he’ll do more wonders in the coming seasons.

Hi, I’m Naman Wakil, and I’m a huge soccer fan. Learn more about the game when you follow me on Twitter.

Wednesday, June 1, 2016

Five Interesting Facts about Soccer
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Every sport has its own gems. By this I mean relatively unknown facts that even hardcore fans don’t know. It takes time to get to learn all these things and I am always pleasantly surprised to discover new information every day. I’ve compiled five facts about soccer that I am pretty sure most fans remain unaware of.

The origin of soccer: Do you know that soccer originally began as a prison game? Officials have said that the game first began in the early 1800s in Newgate Prison in London. Supposedly prisoners made a game that only used the feet because most of them had their hands cut off for theft. The game became popular and spread from the prison to all over England.

Its original name: Americans call the sport soccer, but it’s known as football everywhere else (American football is an entirely different game). Still, soccer was originally called basketball because the first goals were shot into wicker baskets.

A Queen used to play: Most fans don’t know that Queen Elizabeth II used to play in soccer matches when she was still a teenager. These soccer games were played near Buckingham Palace and were during the late 1930s and early 1940s.

Two trophies have been stolen: The World Cup was originally made out of pure gold and was stolen in 1966. It was only found a couple of days later by a dog. The last time the World Cup was stolen was in 1983 and has never been recovered. That particular trophy was awarded to Brazil in 1970.

Soccer players run – a lot: It has been studied that soccer players run around 10 kilometers every game, on average. Surprisingly, most of that is done without the ball since the average player is only in possession of the ball for around two percent of the entire distance they run.
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To be sure, there are no particular advantages to knowing these facts other than they make the game more fun. For my part, I just love collecting them and sharing them with my fellow soccer fans.

Naman Wakil is a walking, living, breathing soccer fanatic. Every single detail of the sport is my passion. Follow this Twitter account to learn more new soccer trivia!