When is the Best Time to Practice Soccer?

Your team’s soccer practices probably occur after work or school hours because of time and schedule limitations. But when is the best time to practice soccer? Really, it depends on the person and what else you have going on that day.

The best time to practice soccer is at a time that works best for you. If you’re busy later in the day, schedule training in the morning between 8 and 10 a.m. If you’re busy in the morning and have free time in the afternoon or evening, consider a start time between 3 and 5 p.m. Most team practices occur in the evenings by default.

Scheduling training where you practice individually, separate from your team, is more accessible than getting an entire team on board for one specific time. Take advantage of your free time to incorporate solo sessions that work for you at any time.

Find the ideal soccer practice length and how often you should train during the week.

When is the best time to practice soccer?

The time in which you practice soccer can significantly affect your training performance and overall function throughout the rest of the day. Everyone is different, but what time should you practice soccer?

You should practice soccer with start times between 8-10 a.m. or 3-5 p.m., depending on what works best for your schedule. Early morning sessions have ideal temperatures and can boost energy levels for the rest of the day. Late afternoon or early evening soccer practices fit more people’s schedules.

Suppose you don’t have work or school in the morning. In that case, I recommend training early in the day, between 8-10 a.m., because the temperature is bearable, it’s typically always light out, and it benefits most people’s circadian rhythms.

Early workouts can also boost your energy throughout the day, giving you that extra pep in your step to complete school or work tasks.

On the other hand, if you’re busy with work, school, or any other responsibilities during the day, a later start time works just as well.

Sometimes, you don’t have a choice regarding what time you practice soccer.

Most team training sessions are coordinated with other schedules in mind. For example, high school soccer practice requires an after-school start time because students are in school during the day.

You can schedule individual training sessions whenever you want.

I used to love going up to the field during summer months in the off-season by myself or with a small group of friends bright and early at 8 a.m. when it was still cool out.

This was the best time to practice soccer because the field was open, the sun was shining, and it wasn’t unbearably hot on the turf.

I would do this throughout high school and college.

On the other hand, college soccer practice times can be all over the place, with schedules varying from player to player.

Because college classes are typically held between 8 a.m. and 3 p.m., regular-season college practices don’t have a choice but to schedule training sessions between 4 and 5 p.m. or early morning before classes start for the day.

Related: When is College Soccer Season? Fall and Spring Rules

Likewise, spring season training sessions are often scheduled as early as 6 a.m., especially at smaller, less-funded schools where facilities are limited and reserved for in-season teams.

How long should a soccer practice be?

Once you figure out what time to practice soccer, it’s time to plan how long the training session will be. The length of a session varies for a few reasons.

Soccer practice should be 45-90 minutes long, including breaks. Training should be shorter for solo sessions and longer for team sessions because a higher number of players increases the number of drills available, thus increasing the length of the session.

Team training sessions typically last longer because there’s more to do, including tactic discussion, on-the-ball drills, and conditioning.

Related: 3 Types of Soccer Practice – Tactical, Physical, Technical

Teams must practice together for extended periods to cover everything that needs addressing and build chemistry among the players.

Also, teams are limited by player schedules, especially at the club level, and can only meet two to three times a week for training, making an entire 90-minute session necessary.

Training by yourself is a great way to sharpen your technical skills and become a better player overall.

Make sure not to wear yourself out during training.

For example, strikers shouldn’t practice finishing for 90 minutes straight because they risk injury from running too much and striking the ball over and over again.

Likewise, goalies shouldn’t practice making saves because the prolonged, repeated impact of their bodies on the ground and the ball on their hands can be too much, even for 45 minutes.

Spread out different types of drills over the session’s duration in a way that makes sense and reduces fatigue or exhaustion.

How many days a week should you train for soccer?

As for how many days a week you should train for soccer, it can be tough to find the right balance. Is there an ideal number of days to train in a week?

You should train for soccer 5-6 days a week and incorporate 1-2 days into your weekly schedule for recovery. Otherwise, you risk injury from overtraining, which can result in missing additional training sessions or games.

Your weekly soccer training schedule should always include a day or two off to allow your body to recover properly.

You can train multiple times a day, but don’t overdo it; three hours is the maximum amount of time you should practice in a day.

Should you train the day before a soccer game?

Training before a soccer game positively affects in-game performance, but only if you do it right.

You should train the day before a soccer game with low to medium-intensity drills that are match-oriented. For example, basic passing and finishing drills prepare players for in-game scenarios with minimal fitness requirements, which are helpful before games.

The most important thing to consider about training the day before a game is if you will have enough recovery time.

An intense training session could leave you feeling sore and tired the following day. It’s best to avoid high-intensity drills if you anticipate playing a game within the next day.

Don’t train the day before a game if you think it will tire you out. Do wallball or basic juggling instead to get touches on the ball and avoid fatigue.

Sean Tinney

I’m Sean Tinney, a lifetime soccer player and Ball At Your Feet owner. This website is a hub for practical soccer advice, information, and insights from one player to another.

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