Kane Dewhurst, Author at Vida Footy - Page 2 of 3
Vince 0417 581 117 Office 9457 7248 [email protected]
Footy skills from home

Footy skills from home

Footy Skills at Home 

Looking to maintain and possibly improve your footy skilss whilst in isolation? Over the coming weeks we will continue to add exercises, activities and drills onto this page that you can do in the comfort of your own home. All these activities and more will also be added to our scoial media pages.

If you have any topics that you would like covered, please email your ideas to us and we will give you some specific drills and activities to improve.

“Those who stand still get left behind” – Mark Twain

Activity 1 – Kicking in the Hoop 

Keeping both feet in the hoop kicking the ball to yourself. 

  • Control kick with a drop punt ( get the spin wright for control ) 
  • Ball drop must be below your waistline
  • Ball grip outside the ball with fingers pointing the ground 
  • Eyes always on the ball   
  • Practice both feet 
  • Create challenges how many effective kicks and marks can you do without stepping out of the hoop in 60sec

Start Point 

  • Prefered foot keeping feet in the hoop 
  • Opposite foot keeping feet in the hoop 
  • Alternate feet keeping feet in the hoop

Progression 1

  • Kick ball above your head keeping feet in the hoop 
  • Prefered foot keeping feet in the hoop 
  • Opposite foot keeping feet in the hoop 
  • Alternate feet keeping feet in the hoop 

Progression 2 

  • Kick ball above your head keeping feet in the hoop with a partner throwing tennis ball into the equation 
  • Prefered foot keeping feet in the hoop 
  • Opposite foot keeping feet in the hoop 
  • Alternate feet keeping feet in the hoop 

Progression 3

  • Set up 2 Hoops ( 2meters apart ) the aim to kick ball towards the hoop and mark the ball in the hoop . It’s all about control and timing – you can continue to stretch the length hoops eg 10 meters

Progression 4

  • 2 hoops set up add in a partner  the aim to kick the ball towards the hoop with the partner throwing a tennis ball at you before you  mark the ball in the hoop . It’s all about control and timing. you can continue to stretch the length of the hoops eg 10 meters
Want to reach your full potential?

Want to reach your full potential?

Reaching Your Full Potential in Football  – a mental training guide for athletes and coaches – with Damien Lafont from Vida Mind. 

Many athletes and coaches have heard of the world “mental toughness”. Most people assume that mental toughness is about using the mind to be become physically tough; but it’s so much more than just being tough.

What is mental toughness?

Mental Toughness isn’t about using all your brawn and muscle and having the reckless attitude to use it in an extreme way. Though a good hard tackle and the ability to hold your own in a pack are great and noble traits for football, we also have seen many recklessness footballers that have a lot of muscle and very little know-how. Strength and the ability to “go in hard” will never go out of style in such an athletic sport as Aussie Rules; however there is much more to “making it” at the top level than physical prowess.

When does it make a difference?

There comes a time in all sport that talent, strength and fitness MUST meet a mindset equipped for sport. If an athlete or team do not have a mind that is trained and equipped for the ups and downs of the rollercoaster ride that we call sport, then they will discover that those emotional highs and lows became difficult to deal with. Soon enough, mental training becomes a necessary component in all elite sport.


Imagine you have two teams – both physically strong, both supremely fit, both with top level skill and impeccable talent; however only one of them has trained their mind for the encounter.

We all know that it’s the team who is mentally equipped for the challenge that will win. And, we’ve all seem times when the less-skilled team beats the more-skilled team through sheer determination and persistence.

There will always be tough opponents, that’s the nature of sport—but there’s always a large majority of these opponents who aren’t mentally equipped for the game. They simply have never utilised mental skills in their sport, they expect everything to happen by miracle. It’s quite strange in a way because these same athletes have spent endless hours kicking the footy, taking shots at goals, balking tackles, building strength and agility, training at the gym, stretching, watching replays….the list goes on. Many athletes are dedicated to their sport and spend countless hours perfecting their skills—but many neglect to train their mental skills. Those that do, are fully equipped and ready to play regardless of the circumstance.

“To be mentally tough isn’t only what you do on the field; it’s how you are off the field too.”

Mental Toughness is a whole new attitude to life. Mental toughness is not what you think it is. Its definition is the same as persistence “the ability to continue to do something despite the obstacles”. It does not suggest that there won’t be any obstacles, in fact it suggests that obstacles are guaranteed– to expect them. But its greater suggestion is: that YOU will continue regardless of these. This is in fact is a mental ability and a much over-looked one at that.

Why is this simple trait a mental ability?

Because once the physical is spent, once the body is exhausted and the skill level drops, you can’t rely on them to be the best part of you. They may be an ability but they are one that is declining and under exhaustion. It is here you can rely on a mental ability to drive your physical one. If you remember what true toughness is, what true persistence is (the ability to continue to do something despite obstacles) then you will have a deeper ability to NOT expect your physical to be the ultimate edge, but to use the mental edge to power the physical. Between two exhausted players or two exhausted teams; the one that uses the mental ability will over-power the one who doesn’t. It can be soul-destroying when you know your opponent will never give up regardless of what you dish out.

Teams that train toughness the right way gain an unseen edge and have a secret and noble cause. They cease to panic and become nervous because the outcome isn’t an important as the effort and endurance. However, of course if you focus on effort, the outcome steers largely in your favour. It’s a win/win proposition.

Mental Toughness is an attitude, a silent and noble one

The “underdog” is the example of it and we all secretly applaud this type of character because he or she is digging deep and using all his/her inner resources against the odds. When the external resources are reliable, the inner resources become the defining point. It’s often true in any life endeavour, not just on the footy field.

There is more to read about mental toughness in the members section of the my.vidafooty.com.au website.   If you want to have access to the rest of this resource and much more please contact us for more information.


Footy drills for small groups

Footy drills for small groups

With pre-season just around the corner, we thought we would share some of the activities from the Members only area. Pre-season is a time when coaches can work with small groups on skill development and set the tone for the remainder of the season.

The goal of these activities is to maximise skill development and be more efficient when training.

The main philosophies with these activities are;

  • Small groups for maximal touch
  • Quality and efficient activities
  • Skill Development
  • Have a purpose
  • Have other coaches helping with the session, rather than just one main coach


The overall goal for our junior players is to make sure they are getting the most out of their time at footy training.  We want players leaving their junior careers with fundamental skills good enough to convert into any level of senior competition.  Regardless of talent level, every player should be given the maximum opportunity to achieve their highest amount of skills.

Take a look at the follow video’s, and maybe you could implement them into your training in the future.  Our membership site already has over 150 activity video, and more are added each week. Click here to find out more!


Colour Grid.  This activity ensures lots of touch and can be modified with a range of skills.

Handball Criss Cross.  Great for warm-ups!

Kick Slide and Bounce

Multiple Grids.  An example of running small groups within a big group


Developing Kicking Efficiency

Developing Kicking Efficiency


Kicking is becoming more and more scrutinised as players transition from junior to teenage age groups. We are finding that players are spending less time in developing this particular area at the key skill development ages of 7 to 13.  Here at Vida Footy, we are experiencing players that are prepared to invest in their development through video analysis are progressing their skill set at a greater rate, as visual feedback provides the best form of clarity for the majority of juniors.

As coaches, we have to spend time developing fundamental skill sets for young players to ensure that good habits are learned, formed and built upon throughout the junior years. It is also vital that the correct technique is developed, and that constant repetition is used to ensure the skill becomes an automatic muscular movement. These movements then need to be translated from a closed skill environment into an open skill with a variety of constraints added.

The importance of weekly sessions

The benefit of weekly kicking sessions for juniors is that they are able to develop their skill in an educational environment, with constant repetition with consistency. Having a mentor analyse, improve and perfect a kicking technique goes a long way to a junior having greater kicking efficiency later on down the track as they continually develop in size. These sessions also build confidence in the player and helps them to have a positive junior experience, no matter the level of player.

For information about Vida Footy’s weekly Monday night skill sessions in term 3, please click on the link: https://vidafooty.com.au/shop/term-3-skill-development/ 

Creating “Thinking Players” for Junior Footy

Creating “Thinking Players” for Junior Footy

There are many ways to coach.  Different techniques, visions, goals, values and communication methods.  The end results of whatever coaching methods we use is usually measured in the success of the pre determined goal at the start of the season.  In senior footy this is usually measured in a Premiership Flag, for juniors it should be about development.

So how do we try and develop junior players so they can move into senior footy, whatever level that may be, so that they can help bring success to their club.  Well according to an article written in the In Daily, an independent newspaper in Adelaide, it’s about creating players who think more.


Creating players that think more drastically improves a players ability to impact a game of footy.  We need to create thinking players throughout junior footy by mixing games based decision making activities throughout training sessions.  The following articles explains this theory.

“The development of ‘thinking’ players will create better team performances and ultimately make Australian Rules football a much safer and enjoyable game for juniors, according to sport experts at Flinders University.

Game-based coaching and game-play practice sessions give junior and senior players alike the chance to be more tactical, to play with purpose and respond more adeptly to the dynamics – and hazards – of the game, says Flinders University coaching analyst Associate Professor Shane Pill, who advises AFL and other leagues around the country.

“Compared to traditional training, which focuses on repetitive drill-based practice, the game sense approach gives players the skills to make better moment-to-moment decisions in a complex and dynamic sport,” says Associate Professor Pill, co-editor of Advances in Australian Football, a new in-depth look at the Great Australian Game.

“Drill based ‘off the line’ training can develop inattention ‘blindness’ that limits players’ perception decision-making and ability to play according to the realities of the game,” says Associate Professor Pill from the Sport, Health and Physical Education (SHAPE) Research Centre at Flinders University.

Now acknowledged as the preferred approach of the AFL coach development department, he says Hawthorn’s award-winning senior coach Alastair Clarkson is a great supporter of the game-sense approach.

“The view of the three-time premiership coach is that young footballers right down to under-10s are being subjected to far too many training drills and not enough football. As a result, young footballers being drafted into AFL clubs not having adequate decision-making skills.

“But the game at the elite level is not the only concern.

“Teenagers should be learning how to play the game by playing it – and learning to enjoy it,” Associate Professor Pill says.

These tactics, along with advances in player selection, player movement, sport medicine and nutrition, are adding to the evolution of the great Australian game, says SHAPE Research Centre director Professor Murray Drummond, co-editor ofAdvances in Australian Football.

“Over time, the game of elite Australian football evolved from a community-based sport to what is now – entirely professional amidst a billion-dollar industry that has enormous social and cultural influence,” Professor Drummond says.

“This book is unique in that it delves into the social, scientific and coaching aspects of Australian football, from elite player level to community ‘grassroots’ engagement and junior player, Indigenous and women player development.

“It explores, challenges and highlights the significance of Australian football in Australian society, as well as the enormous changes that have occurred within the sport since the early 1900s when clubs were starting to emerge.”

The role of elite football in defining masculinity and football club culture is examined in another chapter by fellow Flinders University Sport, Health and Physical Activity lecturer Dr Deb Agnew.

“My chapter, ‘Becoming a star: life as an elite Australian footballer, identity construction and withdrawal from the spotlight,’ is based on research with 20 retired footballers,” Dr Agnew says.

“There is strong evidence to support the influence of Australian football in the development of masculine identity.


Educate your club