Difference Between Soccer & Lacrosse Cleats

Cleated shoes give you the potential to dig your heels or the front of your foot into a grassy playing field and zoom in any direction. Along with baseball, football, and track and field, both lacrosse and soccer are sports played with cleats, meaning shoes with studs. Especially if you live in the Northeast of the U.S., where both soccer and lacrosse have established strongholds, you may need to know how the cleats differ.
The main difference between the two types of cleats lies in the extent to which they support your ankles. Lacrosse cleats are cut higher to offer greater support to the ankle, while soccer cleats offer a low cut to save weight and permit easier changes of direction. Lacrosse cleats offer you a choice of a three-quarter or mid-top shoe. Because of the need for ankle support for lacrosse, trainers recommend staying away from low-cut shoes, note the authors of ¡°Lacrosse: The Player¡¯s Handbook.¡± Coach Jamey Long of SimplyLacrosse.com says he personally prefers the extra ankle support of a high-top or mid-top shoe. Since higher-topped shoes are heavier and more restrictive, you may want a lower-cut lacrosse cleat if you are a faster player, he adds.
From the late 19th century through the beginning of the 1950s, soccer cleats resembled lacrosse cleats. They provided a high cut for ankle support, as they were essentially converted everyday boots. Germany-based Adidas led the way in converting soccer cleats to a more slipper-like profile as Germany, Hungary and other teams copied Brazil¡¯s playing style, reliant on speed and a light touch on the ball.
If football cleats are the heaviest and track and field the lightest cleats in weight, soccer and lacrosse fall in the middle of the spectrum — with lacrosse shoes a bit heavier given the extra material higher on the ankle. The weights are close enough to allow you to wear soccer shoes to play lacrosse, note Noah Fink and Melissa Gaskill in ¡°Lacrosse: A Guide for Parents and Players.¡±
Both cleats typically have four studs in the heel area and six to eight in the forefoot. Soccer cleats, however, have no stud at the end of the toe, while lacrosse cleats do. Lacrosse studs by rule cannot be longer than a half-inch, states ¡°The Confident Coach’s Guide to Teaching Lacrosse.” Soccer studs range typically from 12 to 16 mm — about the same length, a half-inch. Neither sport allows metal cleats such as those used by baseball players. Cleats for both sports can have molded outsoles or in more expensive models, the studs can be replaced and a different length screwed in depending on field conditions.
Manufacturers make women-specific soccer shoes but not women-specific lacrosse cleats. For either lacrosse or soccer, you can wear turf shoes on artificial outdoor surfaces. Turf shoes feature short nubs that don¡¯t tear up the surface.

Drills That Increase Agility & Footwork

Part of getting ready for the rigors of sports or other physical activity is working on footwork, which affects agility, or the ability to move quickly and effectively in different directions. Agility and footwork is key to every major sport, including football, baseball, basketball and soccer. Drills can help target footwork, helping to improve agility and becoming better at a respective sport or activity.
A ladder is a piece of lightweight equipment put on the floor to help guide players through footwork drills. Made out of tape or other fabric, it is laid on the floor and resembles a ladder, with sides connected by rungs. In ladder drills, the point is to step inside the ladder, between the rungs, without your feet touching it. Different drills can target different types of footwork, such as moving side to side, forward or backwards. To develop quick footwork, try the in-and-out drill, in which the participant stands facing the ladder, with it lying lengthwise in front of them. Starting at one of the far ends, the person puts one foot into a section of the ladder, then the other foot, then removes the first foot, followed by the second one, all done as fast as possible. The person then shifts down the ladder and repeats for all the separate sections until arriving at the end of the ladder.
Jump roping is a popular footwork drill and has been used by boxers as a way to train the feet to move quickly in the ring. Jump rope drills involves using a long rope that is held by both hands and twirled around the body as the user jumps over it. Drills can be done by varying the speed and height of the jump as well as trying to revolve the rope multiple times in one jump. Users can also run or walk as they jump rope, as well as moving the feet in different directions, such as side to side or front and back while maneuvering the rope.
Using a step or elevated platform to perform specific drills is another effective way to develop footwork and agility. As with the ladder drills, step drills can be done side-to-side or front-to-back to develop the different footwork skills needed. A simple step drill involves the participant standing in front of the step or elevated object and stepping up with one foot, then the other foot, then stepping down with the first foot and again with the second foot, as fast as possible. This drill can be performed for a certain amount of time and trains the feet to move quickly in a specific direction. Drills can also be done by standing to the side of the step and stepping sideways with one foot, bringing the other foot up, then stepping off to the other side with the first foot, and then with the second foot, ending up on the opposite side from where the participant started.

How to Play Right Midfield in Soccer

If you are asked to play right midfield in soccer, your team is playing a 4-4-2 formation with four defenders, four midfielders and two attackers. You are playing on the right side of the four attackers. You need good stamina, positional discipline and the ability to pass as well as tackle. You will be required to help the right back in defense duties, but also push forward, support the central attackers, supply crosses into the box, play through balls to forwards and contribute with your fair share of goals.
Stay on the right-hand side of the pitch. You must be tactically astute. At times you may be required to move into a central position to break down an opposition attack or to support your team’s offensive players, but for the majority of the game you must hug the right touchline. Your teammates count on you to offer width to the team.
Find space to offer your teammates an outlet. When somebody on your team is in possession of the ball and looks up to play a pass, you should always be free.
Communicate with your teammates. Shout for the ball when your team is in possession. If your team is losing, boost morale by encouraging teammates.
Run with the ball at defenders when possible. Defenders generally do not like somebody dribbling at them quickly, as they are susceptible to panicking and giving away free kicks, or to letting the attacker past.
Look for through balls. For much of the game, you will be forced to pass sideways or even backward, but the key passes you will play will be to forwards running past the opposition defenders. Try to pass the ball between or over opposition defenders, anticipating the run your teammate has made off the ball.
Cross the ball into the box when possible. You must provide the team with width, and you will often be in possession of the ball in an advanced position on the right-hand side of the pitch. Aim for the head or feet of teammates in the box, generally getting as much pace on the ball as possible.
Shoot if you get a clear sight at goal and none of your teammates is in a better position. When cutting in from the right-hand side, try to shoot across the goalkeeper into the far post area, as goalkeepers cut off the angle and are rarely beaten at their near post areas. Aim for the bottom or top corner of the goal, and shoot as hard as you can because you may cause the goalkeeper to spill the ball, allowing a teammate to score on the rebound.