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Quiz the Coach :: How do I Tackle?

Reviewed by on Sep 12, 2008
Rating: 1 Star Rating

Kidzworlds got some free sports and fitness advice like how to tackle an opponent in football.

So ya dig sports but need some help with your game? Don't understand some of the rules of football, basketball or hockey? Got a gripe about P.E. class, skateboarders, cheerleading, coaches, or anything? Why not Quiz the Coach?

1Hey Coach,
I joined football for the first time this year. Its fun, I play wide receiver. But on defense I have trouble tackling people. Maybe I'm a wimp, but I can't tackle really well. I'll try but I basically get run over every time I try. Any tips on how I can be better at tackling?

Being a former football player myself, I can certainly relate to your dilemma. Tackling requires a lot of contact and it not only looks like it hurts, but it actually hurts! The good news is, the more you do it, the more you get used to it. The pain and the fear of hard contact soon becomes second nature to you! It is super important you are not scared when you are about to tackle. For one, your opponent will sense your fear and take advantage of that. You have to be aggressive and you have to get your back dirty a little bit. If the contact is too much for you, then you are probably playing the wrong sport.

The thing you want to make sure is to maintain the proper technique. If you are trying to tackle somebody without the right fundamentals, then you can seriously injure yourself. Here are the five steps to making an effective tackle.

  • When the ball carrier starts to come into your direction, you must commit to the tackle. Make it up in your mind that your opponent will not get past you.
  • Run towards the ball at full speed. Always keep your head up and aim your shoulders at the center of his chest. Always stay low and keep your stance wider than theirs.
  • When you make contact, wrap your arms around his waist. When you get your arms around him, pull him towards you then drive him to the ground. Make sure you grab the jersey or anything so that he won't break free. Use your hips and legs to drive your power. Never drop your head - that is how you could get paralyzed.
  • Tackling is all about effort. Don't ever give up on the tackle.

  • Tackling is an art that is perfected with lots of practice. Keep working with your coach and teammates before and after practice. A good tackler is also strong and fast. Make sure you eat well and do plenty of push-ups and sit-ups so that you will be physically able to make a tackle. When you are older, start weight training. A lot of your tackling power comes from your legs, so do a lot of plyometrics and squats. If you continue to work hard, practice and get mentally tougher, then you will be tackling running backs as if they were practice dummies!

    Do you need tips or advice on sports, fitness or health? Send it to the Kidzworld Coach. Keep in mind peeps, the Kidzworld Coach isn't a doctor or a professional athlete or anything like that. He's just a dude who digs sports, plays 'em and knows a lot about 'em. You should always talk to your 'rents, a doctor or your school gym teacher before starting a new sport or a new exercise.

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