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Make Short-Range Passes
You can practice this technique with a friend, or if you can find a wall to kick the ball at, you can practice this skill yourself. The distance of this pass is between 5 and 15 yards, and the focus is on accuracy.

For this pass, use the side of your foot because it’s the biggest area you can use to connect with the ball. This big area should help you make an accurate pass, and you want to keep the ball on the ground so it’s easier to control the pass.

Start with the ball completely stopped. Place your nonkicking foot at the side of the ball, pointing at the target with your toe just ahead of the ball. Open up your kicking foot so the side of your foot hits the ball. Your toe should be slightly raised with your heel down. At the point of contact, lock your ankle and raise your foot a little so you hit through the center of the ball and it stays on the ground. At the same time, try to get your chin over the ball. This also helps keep the ball on the ground. Practice landing on your kicking foot ahead of the non-kicking foot because this will help prepare you for your next movement and help you push through the ball.
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When you can do this, you can then progress to a moving ball. Take a small touch to the side to get the ball out of your feet and follow the same rules.

With this technique, your focus is on accuracy because you want to help your teammate receive the ball. Locking your ankle with your toes up and heel down will help you make the best pass possible.

Make Mid-Range Passes
We use a mid-range pass for a distance of 15 to 25 yards. A side-foot pass doesn’t have the power to make it that far without marking the player who receives the ball. You can practice this skill on your own or with a partner. Start with a ball that isn’t moving, so you can focus on the technique and buildup from there.

Place your nonkicking foot at the side of the ball with your toes ahead of the ball. For this pass, your plant foot needs to be a little farther away because you need more room to open up your hips when you hit the ball. You will be striking the ball with your laces. The key area is the knuckle on your big toe to about halfway up your instep, with your toe down and your heel up.

On contact, get your chin on your chest so you can see the ball as you hit through it. Make sure you lock your ankle. After you hit the ball, land on your kicking foot in line with, or slightly across, your nonkicking foot. By staying upright, you are keeping the ball on the ground, which makes it easier for the player receiving the pass to control the ball. Make sure you connect with the ball through the center of the ball so it doesn’t spin or go in the air.

Now, try this with a moving ball. Roll the ball out to the side, get your nonkicking foot in the right place, and follow the same steps. Learning this technique is all about trial and error, so take time to practice as often as possible.

Here’s a quick tip: If you hook the ball, your nonkicking foot was probably too close to the ball. If you slice the ball, your nonkicking foot was probably too far away.

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