Regularly running Pee Wee football players through drills is a great way to avoid injury. Pee Wee football is a level of youth football within the Pop Warner organization that oversees and forms rules for youth football. Pee Wee football is restricted to players between the ages of nine and 11 who are between 75 and 120 pounds (12-year-olds are also allowed, provided they meet the weight requirements). Drills for Pee Wee football players are similar to those for players in younger divisions, as Pee Wee players are still growing and learning the fundamentals of football.
Pass and Catch
This basic drill helps Pee Wee football players with ball handling, developing a feel for the ball and improving grip strength. This basic drill can be turned into a game by breaking the kids up into pairs, setting them 10 yards apart from each other and seeing which pair can throw the ball for the longest time without dropping the ball. Eliminate any pair in which one of the kids fails to catch a pass. The last pair left is the winner. This drill and game can also be used with defensive players.
Since most Pee Wee football players have to play both offense and defense, all players need to learn how to tackle properly, which can help prevent injuries. Start the drill by standing an offensive player and a defensive player stand five yards apart from each other. Have the offensive player, carrying the football, run toward the defensive player. The defensive player should make the tackle keeping his head up, his body low, driving forward, wrapping the offensive player up around his knees and bringing the offensive player to the ground. Blow your whistle to signify the beginning and end of the drill.
Sprint and Pushup
While most Pee Wee football players are at the age where they can run all day, it never hurts to incorporate various forms of light strength and endurance conditioning. Line half of the team up on the left side of an end zone and the other half of the team up on the right side of the same end zone. Blow your whistle and have the group on the left side of the end zone run to the 50-yard line and back. While that group is running the other group should be doing push ups. Blow your whistle when the last player from the running group gets back to signify that the groups should switch roles.
Every player will have to throw a block at some point during a game, or at least during the season. Make sure players block properly using their forearm, chest and shoulder while keeping their butts down and backs straight. Players should be closely monitored during this drill, as coaches must make sure they are pushing off with their legs, delivering a blow and holding the block.
- Photo Credit Football image by Richard McGuirk from Fotolia.com
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