The "knuckle shot," also known as an instep shot, is a highly effective and powerful method of kicking the ball in soccer. The knuckle shot is highly unpredictable in its movement, which leads to a low accuracy rating when used. However, goalies are often unable to track and stop an accurate knuckle shot due to its "knuckling" movements.
- Skill level:
Line up your shot from directly behind the ball. Kicking the ball directly from behind, and not at an angle, will cause the ball to "knuckle" more.
Run at the ball and plant your non-shooting foot approximately 9 inches behind and to the side of the ball. If 9 inches is too short or too long for you to kick and follow through comfortably, adjust your positioning accordingly.
Kick the ball as hard as you can while pointing your kicking foot as perpendicular to the ground as possible. The goal is to kick the ball with the laces of your shoe.
Follow through the ball with your kicking foot in as straight a line as possible. This action will keep the rotation of the soccer ball to a minimum, resulting in its unpredictable "knuckling" movement.
Jump with your non-kicking leg as you are completing your follow-through. Land on your kicking foot as you complete the kicking motion. The completion of your rotation that this movement provides keeps your follow-through in a straight line, making your knuckle shot more effective.
Tips and warnings
- Keep your kicking knee in a straight line with the ball as you kick it. This will help your foot stay down longer and increase the movement on your shot.
- Do not attempt the knuckle shot in a game situation without practicing it beforehand. It is highly unpredictable and can easily go out of bounds if not perfected.
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