Genius Explained, Talent is Overrated, The Talent Code, Outliers, and The Little Book of Talent are just a few of the recent books that go into detail about the 10,000 Hour Rule. Malcolm Gladwell writes that his studies have shown that "ten-thousand hours is required to achieve the level of mastery associated with being a world-class expert, in anything."
In recent years I have started to track how many hours some of my teams accumulate throughout a season. In 2014, I was a head coach of a varsity boys team in Michigan. The United States Soccer Federation has a requirement that their Development Academy teams must receive a 3-to-1 training-to-game ratio. Youth academies around the world have ratios of at least 4-to-1 and in extreme cases 7-to-1. (Maybe that's how our Men's National Team can lose to a country the size of Massachusetts?) So, in 2014 I kept track of hours trained and the hours accumulated on a game day including the warm-up. Overall, we had 46 hours of training and 57.5 hours of game day activities. Now, high school soccer is not the best environment for soccer development but this shows that the training-to-game ratio is nowhere near where it needs to be. In fact, it would take 96 seasons just like this one for a player to reach 10,000 hours. We don't have 96 seasons to get it right with our young players.
Dan Coyle is the author of "The Talent Code" and has recently been working with the United States Soccer Federation. Coyle writes, "compare your youth soccer training schedule to those around the world and in upper level training academies. Most United States youth players practice twice a week for one to 1.5 hours. This is during a season that lasts 12 weeks. Play spring and fall and your training time might be as little as 48 hours a year. Compare this to some development programs where young players might receive over 700 hours a year. A simple reinforcement of the fact that much of the technical training a youth player needs must come from outside organized soccer."
A lot of factors go into determining how many hours your player is receiving and not all of them are your clubs fault. Most coaches in the United States would love to train their teams 3 or 4 times a week but simply cannot due to the amount of teams some coaches have or field availability for training.
This is where PlayMaker Training makes its IMPACT! PlayMaker Training has the ability to train players from all organizations any day of the week. Each training session is focused on raising the level of of each players technical foundations, something that is often neglected in a team training environment where tactics and training to win come before individual player development. Let PlayMaker Training help your player reach 10,000 hours while they are still young!