Posts Tagged soccer gift

Soccer Goal Shopping, Part-2; Choosing the Size

Posted by Noel on Monday, 8 November, 2010

Welcome to part two of our soccer goal buyers guide. If you missed part one of this guide, choosing a class, then you can go back and start with that one by clicking here. If you have already read part one then get ready for more great hints and ideas as to how to shop for the right soccer goal for your soccer player at home. This part covers size. When it comes to soccer goal size there are two factors to go over, the first is, how old is the child for whom you are buying the soccer goal? The second is, how much space do you have?

Young Soccer Player

Young Soccer Player - Image courtesy of heraldpost

How Old is the Person Getting the Gift?

In order to determine which goal size is right for your child it is important to know which common sizes are available and for what ages they were intended, from smallest to largest the common sizes are:

3′ H x 4′W, intended for training and for use by toddler and nursery school ages.

4′H x 6′W, intended for training all ages, or for games with 5 and 6 year olds.

4′H x 8′W, intended for games with 5 and 6 year olds.

4.5′H x 9′W, intended for games with 6 and 7 year olds.

5′H x 10′W, intended for games with 6 and 7 year olds.

6′H x 12′W, intended for games with 8 and 9 year olds. Common backyard goal size.

6.5′H x 12′, intended for games with 8 and 9 year olds.

6.5′ H x 18′W, intended for games with 10 and 11 year olds.

7′H x 21′W intended for games with 12 and 13 year olds.

8′H x 24′W regulation size soccer goal, intended for ages 14 and up.

Obviously, the size and ages shown here are based on guidelines set out by soccer organizations and soccer governing bodies across the globe, but when it comes to the size of goal that will suit your child you do not have to follow this list. If you buy the most common backyard goal size (6′ x 12′) your child will enjoy it whether they are 6 or 19 years old. But the list above might help you narrow down which size is ideal.

How Big is Your Yard?

Soccer Yard

Two Deers Visit a Soccer Yard - Courtesy of billhd

When setting up a soccer goal at home, the most important factor is distance from the goal. The amount of space that is free on either side of the goal is also a factor, but in the end, if your yard is wide enough to fit 21 feet, then you can have a 7′H x 21′ goal provided that the shooting distance in your backyard is worthwhile. So we will share a different list here that covers a recommended distance to goal size ratio for your yard in order to determine an ideal size for you. Note that you will need to add 2 yards to each of the numbers below just to give running room for the soccer shot approach.

3′ H x 4′W, generally used by kids just learning to kick, distance can be as little as 2 yards.

4′H x 6′W, stronger kids need more space, but with a small goal not too much distance is needed in order to have a challenging and fun experience, distance can be as little as 5 yards.

4′H x 8′W, slightly bigger goal for the same age group needs more space to make it fun, distance can be as little as 7 yards.

4.5′H x 9′W, kids using this size goal may have some pop, and the goal is starting to approach a more realistic game size, distance should be at least 10 yards.

5′H x 10′W, slightly larger goal for the same age group, also needs at least 10 yards of shooting distance.

6′H x 12′W, a fair sized soccer goal meant for kids who might be able to use it. There should be a distance of at least 12 yards to make this goal size worthwhile.

6.5′H x 12′, distance of about 12 to 15 yards.

6.5′ H x 18′W, once the goal starts to get to about this size or bigger, the fun comes in finding difficult angles, playing against someone else, or trying to score from a distance. So you should have a solid distance of about 20 yards or more and if possible, there should be 5 or more yards of clearance on either side of the goal.

7′H x 21′W, very similar to what was just described previously, only the kids will probably be bigger and stronger and will therefore need a little bit more space. Keep a distance of at least 25 yards and if possible, 5 yards of clearance on either side of the goal.

8′H x 24′W, as this is a regulation sized goal, it could be used by players with the potential to be very strong, so the distance should be 30 yards and if possible, keep 7 yards of clearance on either side of the goal.

As stated earlier, these are just guidelines to help narrow down your search for a properly sized soccer goal, in the end factors like growth of the child, moving your home and so on can make it necessary to fudge these numbers a bit. Either way, we hope this portion of the guide was helpful. The next part of this gift shopping guide will go over choosing the right model of soccer goal.

Shopping for Soccer Goals, Part 1 – Choosing a Class

Posted by Noel on Thursday, 4 November, 2010

Every year it becomes increasingly obvious that soccer is America’s youth sport of choice. So, with the holiday season approaching, we thought it would be a good time to go over what may be this season’s top gift for America’s youngest athletes, the soccer goal.

A Full Sized Tournament Soccer Goal

Increased competition and reduced supply costs in this market have made what was once an expensive and unlikely choice for a soccer gift into an ideal one. But with so much competition in the soccer goal market, choosing the right goal for your needs had become more difficult than ever. With that in mind we are publishing this three part blog about finding and choosing the perfect soccer goal for your soccer player. This first part will go over choosing the correct class of soccer goal. The second part covers choosing the correct size for your needs and the final part will go over picking an ideal model. So without further ado, we bring you part one.

Choosing a Soccer Goal Class

The first thing to know when choosing a soccer goal style is what classes there are to choose from. While each manufacturer and some distributors of soccer goals have their own names for these soccer goal types, there are actually only five soccer goal classes; tent/pop-up goals, PVC/training goals, flat/rebounder goals, portable goals and permanent goals. Each has its advantages and disadvantages and prices vary significantly, even within class.

Tent/Pop-Up Goals

Bownet 7 x 18 Tent Style Soccer Goal

With the advent of the PUGG Soccer Goal a whole new concept for soccer goal training came into view. Basically the idea that PUGG brought to market was that a practice goal did not need to have a traditional frame, it just needed to catch the balls that were shot at it. Since then several other companies have run with the idea of making a goal out of a tent, the most popular (aside from the PUGG) at present is probably the Bownet Soccer Goal.

Advantages

Since they are basically tents with a net, they are very light and therefore the safest soccer goals on the market. They also fold and/or disassemble to a very tiny size making them easy to move around and store. This also makes them relatively inexpensive.

Disadvantages

Again, since they are basically tents with a net, they do not give an honest soccer game bounce off of the frame and they do not last very long. Certainly not as long as a traditional portable or permanent goal. Also, these goals do not give off the same soccer field impression as a more traditional metal goal.

Why to Choose this Goal Class

This is the goal to choose if you do not have space at home to play, but you have a park nearby. It is also a great choice for a soccer coach or trainer, or for the dad who wants to coach his kids between practices.

PVC/Training Goals

Training Soccer Goal

PVC Soccer Goal that Changes Size

Before the pop-up and tent goals, there were training goals. Most of them are made of PVC, though some of the larger manufacturers offer these goals in steel or aluminum models. These goals have a more classic square frame than the PUGG, and most can fold and/or be disassembled for portability. This can be a dangerous class to shop in, because it includes a lot of cheap and breakable models. A safe rule for this class is, if it costs less than $75.00 there is probably a reason.

Advantages

Because these goals have an actual frame, they can give a real game bounce and feel off of the post. They are never larger than 8′ Wide and 4′ High so they are lightweight, safe and easy to store. Many of them fold and a few models even change sizes, which can make for a lot of fun at practice or when playing. The good ones will generally last longer than tent/pop-ups.

Disadvantages

While these goals are portable and light, they take up a lot more space than a tent/pop-up goal. They also don’t assemble or “Pop-Up” as fast. The inexpensive ones will break very quickly.

Why to Choose This Class

This type of goal is great for the coach who wants a goal that changes size, or for a young player with a smaller backyard who wants to leave the goal outside all summer long.

Flat/Rebounder Goals

Rebounder Soccer Goal

Rebounder soccer goals were created for coaches who wanted to have players shoot on both sides of a goal. They are flat, with tight nets that bounce the ball back to the player. They are generally made with steel or aluminum frames and aside from the fact that they are flat, they react and create “off the post” bounces that are similar to that of a traditional soccer goal.

Advantages

Rebounder goals take up very little space (in terms of depth) on a soccer field or backyard, so they can fit in more back yards than a traditional soccer goal. The bounce back action that a ball takes off of a rebounder goal can also be very useful when practicing and honing skills. Both sides can take soccer shots at the same time.

Disadvantages

They are not quite as safe as any of the other goals as they generally require stakes or anchors just to stand up. The ball always bounces back, so it is not a traditional goal.

Why to Choose This Class

If you have a soccer player who is constantly beating a soccer ball against the house wall, this is a nice replacement to save that wall. Great for coaches who train many teams or teams with lots of players.

Portable Soccer Goals

Portable Soccer Goal

Full Size Portable Soccer Goal

Portable soccer goals were created for soccer leagues that did not have their own soccer field (which is most leagues). They are traditional soccer goals with traditional frames. The only basic difference between these goals and the permanent ones are that they can be moved. Within the class of portable soccer goals there are many sub-classes, but those will be discussed in another article as they would only add confusion to this topic. What is important to note here is that prices vary in regards to these goals greatly, though price is not always an indication of quality. That being stated, if a portable soccer goal is greater than 5′ high by 10′ wide and costs less than $100.00, it is probably not going to last you very long.

Aside from that rule, the important points to note when picking a worthy portable soccer goal are safety, and quality of materials. As a general rule, you want materials to be thicker than 1/8th of an inch or .125 wall as that gives enough metal for lasting welds. Materials should also be 2″ in width or greater as that prevents bowing in the crossbar and gives a more accurate bounce.

Advantages

These goals are used by both amateur and professional leagues and teams, so they look and act just as a soccer goal should. They are much sturdier than any of the previously mentioned soccer goals so they will last closer to 10 years as opposed to one or so.

Disadvantages

These goals are made of aluminum or steel and will therefore weigh more than a pop-up or PVC goal. This aspect also makes them more dangerous if un-anchored, especially the steel options.

Why to Choose This Class

This class of goal is meant for leagues, but individuals can and should choose these goals if they are looking for an option that can be left up in their fair sized yard all year round. Also, for the player or coach who wants to play on an actual soccer goal and get the bounce and feel of a real game, this is an ideal option. Basically, for a sturdy, lasting realistic soccer feel on the go, choose a portable goal, for a less expensive, quick and light goal, choose a tent/pop-up.

Permanent Soccer Goals

Permanent Soccer Goal

Full Size Permanent Soccer Goal

The original soccer goals were put in place and left there, hence the name, permanent soccer goals. They are what you see on TV and at competitive high school, college and pro level matches. Most are painted white, look gorgeous and are built to last for a long, long time.

Advantages

They look great, last a long time and can weather the weather. Most have 4″ Round metal tube which is perfect if you are looking for a professional quality bounce off of the posts, they are generally built so that they are very difficult to move or pull over, so that makes them a safe option.

Disadvantages

They are expensive. For a full sized 8′ x 24′ permanent goal expect to pay $1000.00 or more. They don’t move, you can often drag or roll them around the field, but if you want to move them to a completely different location, they will need to be uninstalled and reinstalled.

Why to Choose This Class

If you have plenty of space, available cash and don’t plan on moving in the next five or so years, do not buy anything else. These goals are the top of the heap, the best of the best. You can feel like Messi while you take shots at a pro style goal from 30 yards out. This is the goal style that everyone wants, but for the reasons described earlier, cannot have.

We Recommend

Pop-up/Tent

Pugg Goal
Bownet Goal

PVC/Training

Duralite Training Soccer Goal

Flat/Rebounder

Kickback Rebounder
Kwik Goal Rebounder

Portable

Backyard Goal
Portable Goals

Permanent

Kwik Goal
Tournament Soccer Goal