Deaf-friendly football activities
Warm-ups and cool-downs are essential aspects of a coaching session or match situation, and should be fully inclusive. Games which rely on visual cues can have a positive effect on all players’ development. For example, holding up cones and other visual signals encourages the players to look up more, improving their spatial awareness on the field of play.
Not all games will be suitable for all ages and abilities, but with some creative thinking, most games can be adapted to suit the footballers you're working with. Think about other games you regularly play on the pitch and how these can be adapted to be more deaf friendly.
Here are a few examples of warm ups using strong visual signals:
- Each player has a ball.
- The players must move around the designated area with the ball at their feet.
- When the coach holds up a red cone, they must all stop with the ball under control.
- Introduce a yellow cone and the players must change direction with a turn.
- A green cone means the players must increase their speed with the ball.
- Players must jog around a designated area trying to dodge each other.
- When the coach holds up two cones, all the players must get into pairs.
- Any player who is not in a pair is out.
- This also works if the coach holds up three, four or even five cones in turn until there are only two players left.
- Each player has a ball to dribble around with.
- The coach will then demonstrate a series of skills and dribbles one at a time.
- The players should only copy the coach if the coach is also holding up a red cone.
- If the coach doesn’t raise a red cone when demonstrating a skill, the players must not copy the coach’s action.