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Kicking Fit

A health and fitness blog for soccer with many resident and guest contributors. We'll share links from readers as well. Come kick with us.

Fit2Finish: Design your training with the just-right challenge

Everyone wants to be fit to play the game, but who has time for extra fitness? And who in his right mind wants to attend “conditioning” sessions? Fortunately, the game helps us out here in several ways. Dr. Wendy LeBolt shows us how to use game play to identify the fitness needed and then train it.

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By | June 5, 2015 | 0 Comments | Tags: , , , ,

Fit2Finish: Why kids’ bodies require special care and attention to stay healthy

In excerpts from her book Fit2Finish: Keeping Your Soccer Players in the Game, SoccerWire.com Featured Columnist Dr. Wendy LeBolt explains why we need to treat kid-bodies differently from adult-bodies and how we can accomplish that.

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By | May 29, 2015 | 0 Comments | Tags: , ,

Soccer Mom: Love her or leave her?

Who and what is a “Soccer Mom”? This week Dr. Wendy LeBolt delves into the label which has become perhaps the most contentious term in youth soccer today.

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By | May 26, 2015 | 1 Comment | Tags: , , , , ,

Fit2Finish: More than “just playing the game” needed to keep our kids fit

In excerpts from her book Fit2Finish: Keeping Your Soccer Players in the Game, SoccerWire.com Featured Columnist Dr. Wendy LeBolt explains why young athletes are suffering more injuries these days and why we can’t just let the game take care of keeping them fit. Her video also provides three easy ways to increase strength, agility and quickness.

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By | May 22, 2015 | 0 Comments | Tags: ,

Ten reasons you shouldn’t coach your own kid, and what to do if you absolutely must

When kids want to play youth sports, they need coaches. But should you coach your own kid? Dr. Wendy LeBolt surveyed parents, parent-coaches, professional coaches and coaching educators to gather some advice that’s a must-read for those considering this challenge.

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By | May 19, 2015 | 9 Comments | Tags: , , , ,

Overuse is Insanity: Five simple changes to keep it healthy

Athletes must push themselves if they want to be their best, and demanding more of yourself today than you did yesterday is what makes you better. But doing the same thing over and over, only harder, is killing us, writes Dr. Wendy LeBolt. Check out her five easy ways to avoid overuse injuries and freshen up your training session.

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By | May 12, 2015 | 1 Comment | Tags: , , , , ,

Injury Prevention: Not magic, just maintenance

If your car needs scheduled maintenance, shouldn’t your kid? So…how many miles you got on your young soccer player, asks Dr. Wendy LeBolt in her latest blog post.

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By | May 5, 2015 | 0 Comments | Tags: , , , ,

The 10 best reasons to say no to the high-pressure travel team invite

Yes, we want to support our kids. Yes, we want them to have the best chance for success. But in today’s you-get-what-you-pay-for environment, it pays to remember that sometimes you can get more for less, writes Dr. Wendy LeBolt.

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By | April 28, 2015 | 0 Comments | Tags: , , ,

Can we develop players AND children at the same time?

Dr. Wendy LeBolt builds on the concept of “player-focused development” this week, pondering how the “first teacher effect” and other schools of thought factor into this complex issue.

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By | April 21, 2015 | 0 Comments | Tags: , , , ,

LeBolt: How to build a successful travel team without ever cutting a player

So, here’s an idea: what if, instead of coaches selecting the players, we let players select the coaches? Dr. Wendy LeBolt takes a look at a much-loved girls travel coach in Northern Virginia with a “no-cuts” policy that might just transform the way we look at “elite” youth soccer.

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By | April 14, 2015 | 4 Comments | Tags: , , , ,

LeBolt: Real parents don’t need instructions

“Kids don’t come with instructions.” That’s often the lament of parents frustrated by kid behavior that’s unexplainable, writes Dr. Wendy LeBolt in her latest column, explaining that this is actually less of a challenge and more of a blessing.

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By | April 7, 2015 | 0 Comments | Tags: , , , ,

Play with a Purpose: The simple solution to our kids’ stress crisis

Kids are stressed these days. Anxiety, worry, clinical depression and suicide is on the rise in our teens. They are meeting the pressure cookers of their lives without the resources to manage them. Exercise sometimes seems like just another stress in their lives, but it can actually hold the key to relief, says Dr. Wendy LeBolt.

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By | March 31, 2015 | 0 Comments | Tags: , , , ,

LeBolt: Let’s talk about “the unmentionables”

After spectating on a particularly soaking day on the pitch, a friend asked Dr. Wendy LeBolt, “Why do so many girls teams wear white? I don’t really want to know the color of every player’s sports bra.” That exchange inspired LeBolt’s latest column, a heartfelt take on body image, self-confidence and related challenges facing adolescent athletes in our society.

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By | March 24, 2015 | 3 Comments | Tags: , , , , ,

LeBolt: Strategies to ace your first college soccer recruiting visit

Are you or your young player entering the “campus visit” stage of your college selection process? Dr. Wendy LeBolt offers some useful advice — and a few voices of experience — as you make the rounds of your top contenders.

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By | March 17, 2015 | 0 Comments | Tags: , , , ,

LeBolt: Who can save soccer in America?

How in the world can the USA compete in the rapidly-evolving landscape of international soccer? We may need to dig deep and go long on this one, says Dr. Wendy LeBolt. Arguing about structures, costs and leadership certainly won’t get us there. What if, instead of selecting, identifying or even building players, we wanted to discover them? Where would we look?

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By | March 10, 2015 | 8 Comments | Tags: , , , , , ,

China is training an army of youth soccer players: Can the U.S. beat this?

How much money does it take to buy a World Cup? China would like to find out. SoccerWire.com Featured Columnist Dr. Wendy LeBolt takes a look at how China is planning to become a soccer super power by creating 20,000 soccer schools. LeBolt explains why this gives the U.S. an opportunity to reflect on how we develop players in the U.S.

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By | March 3, 2015 | 5 Comments | Tags: , , , , ,

Prevent cold-weather muscle strains: Five dos and don’ts

The body is amazing in survival mode, a condition often incurred when the temperatures drop as loaw as they have across North America this winter. Unfortunately, on these very cold days, that’s not good news for the muscles in the limbs we use to play soccer, says Dr. Wendy LeBolt, who offers tips on how to stay healthy when you take the field in chilly conditions.

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By | February 24, 2015 | 0 Comments | Tags: , , ,

A “female-friendly” soccer ball: Friend or Foe?

A Danish youth soccer coach and lifelong soccer player has developed a lighter, smaller “female friendly” soccer ball called the Eir Soccer. Could this help prevent injuries in girls and young women? Or is it sexist? SoccerWire.com Featured Columnist Dr. Wendy LeBolt takes a look.

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By | February 17, 2015 | 2 Comments | Tags: , , , ,

LeBolt: Plot your course from green to tee

A golf-minded friend of Dr. Wendy LeBolt recently gave her some food for thought: “Look at the course from green to tee, rather than tee to green.” In other words, figure out what you want to accomplish and then plan backwards, she explains in her latest post for SoccerWire.

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By | February 10, 2015 | 2 Comments | Tags: , , , , , ,

LeBolt: Should your kid be a specialist, or general practitioner?

To specialize or not to specialize, that is the question on many minds of late. Even most “non-proponents” of early specialization agree that if your kid is really serious about soccer, they need to choose it as a focus once they hit their teens or certainly by high school age. By then, they have had ample […]

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By | February 3, 2015 | 9 Comments | Tags: , , , ,

LeBolt: What’s so wrong with early specialization?

After many conversations at the NSCAA Convention, Dr. Wendy LeBolt came away convinced that balance and perspective are the most important tools in determining when a young athlete should specialize in one sport, and when diversity is needed. Her take is a useful counterpoint to John O’Sullivan’s latest column on specialization.

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By | January 27, 2015 | 8 Comments | Tags: , , , ,

LeBolt: Five simple tests to identify increased risk of ACL tear

A conversation with a rising young player at the NSCAA Convention reminded Dr. Wendy LeBolt just how widespread youth soccer’s plague of ACL injuries has become. So she’s provided an important series of tests that can help players and parents catch the warning signs before a catastrophic knee injury occurs.

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By | January 20, 2015 | 2 Comments | Tags: , , , ,

NSCAA Convention 2015: Learning, networking, fun – who’d wanna miss out?

Are you headed to the 2015 NSCAA Convention in Philadelphia this week? Either way, SoccerWire’s Dr. Wendy LeBolt has some important advice — and perspective — on the value of the education and networking on offer at “Soccer’s Biggest Party.”

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By | January 13, 2015 | 0 Comments | Tags: , , , ,

LeBolt: The real secret to success … quitting?

What if the secret to success was quitting what we love doing most? That’s the foundation of the counter-intuitive lesson Dr. Wendy LeBolt offers up in her latest “Kicking Fit” blog post.

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By | January 6, 2015 | 0 Comments | Tags: , , ,

LeBolt: How setting the wrong goals leads to failure

Both in soccer and in life, lots of people make new year’s resolutions. They look at where they have failed, identify what needs work and come January 1, they’re gonna get to it. Something about the clean slate of a new year brings hope that this year will be different. Rarely is this successful, explains Dr. Wendy LeBolt. Here’s why.

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By | December 30, 2014 | 1 Comment | Tags: , , , ,