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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.

It will take a lot more than fitness for the USMNT to win the World Cup

Dr. Wendy LeBolt says while Team USA traditionally dominates the world in fitness that can be measured in straight lines and stats, it’s fitness with a purpose that is necessary to win a World Cup.

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By | June 17, 2014 | 0 Comments | Tags: ,

World Cup Mania: Seeing starts believing

When is it OK to plop your kids in front of the TV for two or more hours at a time? When the world’s biggest soccer tournament is on! Dr. Wendy Lebolt explains why your young players need to be watching the 2014 FIFA World Cup.

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By | June 10, 2014 | 0 Comments | Tags: , , ,

LeBolt: Youth teams getting it right in pregame warm-ups, but still work to be done

Featured columnist Dr. Wendy LeBolt says she loves seeing how youth teams approached pregame warm-ups over the last few weekends. Everybody has a different flare and style when it comes to stretching and warming up, but in general we’re getting it so much more right. However, there are still some noticeable points of weakness in our modern athletes. Wendy dispels a common misconception about core strength.

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By | June 4, 2014 | 1 Comment | Tags: , , , , , , ,

Does heading a soccer ball really lead to brain injury?

A rising number of alarming headlines about links between heading and brain injuries have concerned many soccer parents. But Dr. Wendy LeBolt urges you to be a highly cautious, informed consumer of information on this topic. Here’s why.

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By | May 28, 2014 | 12 Comments | Tags: , , , , ,

Postgame is when pregame begins: Eat, drink, rest, play

Is your team headed to a big Memorial Day weekend tournament? Dr. Wendy Lebolt offers some crucial tips for managing the physical and mental demands players will encounter, from nutrition to recovery to motivation and beyond.

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By | May 23, 2014 | 2 Comments | Tags: , , , ,

Motherhood is a Contact Sport: McLean Redshins style

Soccerwire.com featured columnist Dr. Wendy LeBolt shares the story of the McLean Redshins, a Women’s Over-30 team made up of mothers who enjoyed watching their children play, and then worked to find success themselves on the field.

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By | May 13, 2014 | 2 Comments | Tags: , , , ,

Playing up: Is developing their skills worth giving up our win?

Is playing up in soccer safe or important for development? Soccerwire.com featured columnist Dr. Wendy Lebolt argues that whether we are keeping our kids back or strong-arming a ringer to join our team, we might do well to assess our motives.

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By | May 6, 2014 | 4 Comments | Tags: ,

The parent-coach conversation: Should we…or shouldn’t we?

Are coaches and parents communicating adequately in North American youth soccer? This week Dr. Wendy LeBolt explains what happened when she broke through the traditional silence between club and high school coaches, and how doing so can help young players immeasurably.

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By | April 29, 2014 | 9 Comments | Tags: , , , ,

Friday nights done right at Vienna Youth Soccer (Va.)

Remember when playing under the lights was one of the greatest thrills of a young athlete’s life? SoccerWire’s Dr. Wendy LeBolt visited a weekly pick-up session in Vienna, Va. where that dream lives on.

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By | April 22, 2014 | 18 Comments | Tags: , , , , ,

Abby is hurt again; is time for her to play smarter?

She’s gone and done it again. This time Abby Wambach has fractured an orbital bone. Soccerwire.com featured columnist Dr. Wendy LeBolt argues that it’s time for marquee player to realize how important it is for the game for her to be in the lineup, and start playing smarter to stay injury-free.

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By | April 15, 2014 | 3 Comments | Tags: , , ,

Why do you coach?

Our kids need coaches. Soccerwire.com featured columnist Dr. Wendy LeBolt shares her story as a coach with little experience and how, when she stepped up to the plate, the kids taught her everything she needed to know.

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By | April 8, 2014 | 0 Comments | Tags: , , ,

How to put the SHOW in showcase

Soccerwire.com featured columnist Dr. Wendy Lebolt gives players some helpful suggestions as they prepare for the pressures of a showcase tournament, and what college coaches are looking for when they watch players.

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By | April 1, 2014 | 0 Comments | Tags: , , ,

Lebolt: Mothers of the Game

Before there was Abby. Before there was Mia. Before, even, there was Michelle, there was Chris Reynolds…This week SoccerWire’s Wendy Lebolt presents a very special account of the McLean Redshins, one of the first adult women’s soccer teams in the U.S. — full of pioneers who laid the foundations for the country’s current world dominance.

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By | March 28, 2014 | 4 Comments | Tags: , , , , , , ,

Balancing the Books: What every coach can do to battle ACL injuries

Have you (or has your coach) implemented an injury prevention program for your team? Soccerwire.com featured columnist Dr. Wendy Lebolt gives a few simple steps that coaches can take to help players prevent ACL injuries.

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By | March 17, 2014 | 0 Comments | Tags: , , ,

What does an ACL really cost? The financial and intangible costs to players and families

How much does tearing your ACL cost? Soccerwire.com’s Dr. Wendy Lebolt talks with two families on the financial cost, but also the other intangible costs, including the emotional toll it takes on players and their families.

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By | March 11, 2014 | 7 Comments | Tags: ,

Overlap season spreads kids thin: The 6+ program to prevent over-training injuries

Early spring means the arrival of “overlap season” for many young players, with heavy physical loads due to preseason, tryouts and activity in multiple sports and teams. Dr. Wendy Lebolt explains why this is a recipe for injuries — and what coaches and parents can do to improve the situation.

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By | March 5, 2014 | 3 Comments | Tags: , , , , , ,

The XX Factor: Be the boss of your body

I just finished some great sessions with the VYS Fire, a collection of mostly 10-year-olds from three different teams, who gave me a new mantra: “Be the Boss of Your Body.” I love that. We were doing the Fit2Finish Bs: Bend your knees, Balls of your feet, head up Be ready to play, and learning how […]

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By | February 27, 2014 | 4 Comments | Tags: , , , , ,

Survival Training: Five healthy ways to tackle Icebreaker tournaments

Can you believe spring soccer is just around the bend? This year the weather has prevented most teams from doing a lot of preseason preparation. What will this mean when the team takes the field in March? Is there anything we can do to help them be better prepared? Dr. Wendy Lebolt takes a look at what should be in your Icebreaker tool box.

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By | February 18, 2014 | 2 Comments | Tags: , ,

Schwartz: Your best 11 starts with periodization

Bearing lessons learned at last month’s NSCAA Convention, biomechanics trainer Jennifer Schwartz returns to SoccerWire with an important discussion about periodization, a training philosophy which can help minimize injuries and maximize performance at all ages.

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By | February 14, 2014 | 4 Comments | Tags: , , , , , ,

What message do we send when we call our injured players warriors?

We celebrate the indomitable spirit of the athlete. Olympians who have persevered from their earliest days. Bumped and bruised through trauma and tears, they dust it off and try again. Soccerwire.com’s Dr. Wendy Lebolt examines what effect that has on young athletes.

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By | February 11, 2014 | 0 Comments | Tags: , , , ,

Taking Action Against Concussions: Eight things you can do with your team right now

Concussion awareness and education is everywhere. But does knowledge help prevention? Soccerwire.com contributor Dr. Wendy Lebolt argues that we don’t need to wait on more education or legislation. Coaches and parents can be the change those kids need now using these tips.

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By | January 27, 2014 | 6 Comments | Tags: , , , , , , ,

Want them to play with urgency? Tell them the final whistle is about to sound

Can a whistle really be the most powerful force in a young palyer’s life? Only if it’s the “final” whistle. Both athletes and coaches discover the urgency when the last seconds tick down. Wouldn’t it be great if we could harness this mindset — this final-minute push — in the development of our young athletes? But how, asks Dr. Wendy Lebolt in this week’s Kicking Fit blog post.

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By | January 21, 2014 | 0 Comments | Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

Three strategies to help avoid soccer injuries: Safety, Gear, Move

Dr. Wendy LeBolt is back with a three-pronged strategy for injury prevention in soccer with her latest entry in our Kicking Fit blog on SoccerWire.com. Read why footwear is a major factor, and maybe even pick up some advice to help those soccer tots keep their shoelaces tied!

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By | January 14, 2014 | 3 Comments | Tags: , , ,

The key to sustaining your resolution: A good coach

Making resolutions is easy. Keeping them is hard. In fact, only eight percent of us will keep them, says Dr. Wendy Lebolt, who offers some useful strategies for making your athlete’s 2014 plans stick.

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By | January 7, 2014 | 0 Comments | Tags: , , ,

What are you buying when you pay for a coach?

This week we continue the conversation from Dr. Lebolt’s last post, “How much is a good coach worth?” It’s more important than ever that team parents and administrators who are making the decision about finding and hiring a coach know what they’re getting. Your kid is a precious commodity; you want the best for him or her. Here’s how.

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By | December 27, 2013 | 0 Comments | Tags: , , , , , ,