Rio Rapids Prove the Importance of Video for Club Soccer Teams

The Rio Rapids have become one of their region’s top teams due in part to their use of video.

Rio Rapids Prove the Importance of Video for Club Soccer Teams

The Rio Rapids have become one of their region’s top teams due in part to their use of video.

The Rio Rapids haven’t become one of the most suc­cess­ful soc­cer clubs on the West Coast by acci­dent. A part­ner with the Colorado Rapids of MLS through the Adidas Alliance Program, Rio has cap­tured 107 New Mexico State Cup Championships since 2001 and placed 388 play­ers in col­lege pro­grams. Rio knows how to win and devel­op talent.

Video has played a key role in the club’s ascen­sion to the region’s elite. We got in touch with Tim Gallegos, Rio’s U13 coach, to get a peek behind the cur­tain on how the club used video to achieve its potential.

Have a Plan in Place

At the begin­ning of each fall and spring ses­sion, Gallegos devel­ops a tac­ti­cal peri­odiza­tion train­ing plan for his teams. Each week focus­es on a dif­fer­ent aspect of the team’s tac­tics, rang­ing from defense to attack to transitions.

Gallegos also close­ly mon­i­tors any team needs that pop up dur­ing the sea­son and allots time to deal with prob­lem areas. This allows him flex­i­bil­i­ty to address cer­tain areas he didn’t nec­es­sar­i­ly expect in his pre­sea­son planning.

The first time I watch the match video, I eval­u­ate our team in how they applied the con­cepts from the pre­vi­ous week’s train­ing, and make notes on areas of need­ed improve­ment for the next time those train­ing top­ics come up,” Gallegos said. I then look to the next week’s train­ing plan to see what train­ing top­ics are com­ing up. I watch the video again and make notes on areas of improve­ment we can address in the next week’s train­ing. And the cycle continues.”

Leverage Insights Through Data

Gallegos ana­lyzes each game on his own, but he entrusts the stats to Hudl Assist. Hudl’s ana­lysts break down each game, allow­ing his staff to iden­ti­fy team trends and address them in video sessions.

Hudl Assist iden­ti­fies team trends that fur­ther refine our train­ing focus­es,” Gallegos said. This way I can give very spe­cif­ic coach­ing feed­back to each play­er with­in our sys­tem and style of play. Having them watch video solid­i­fies the image in their minds of their roles/​responsibilities with­in our system/​style.

We use video exam­ples, both good and bad moments, to show how sol­id tech­nique allows us to effec­tive­ly exe­cute our tactics.”

With Assist, every match’s key moments are just a click away. He sim­ply clicks on a stat to see a playlist of video asso­ci­at­ed with that num­ber, whether it be cor­ner kicks, scor­ing chances or finishes.

Share with the Players

As use­ful as video is in help­ing coach­es iden­ti­fy issues, it’s just as crit­i­cal for the play­ers to use it as well. After all, they’re the ones on the pitch. The more they see both their suc­cess­es and mis­takes, the clos­er they’ll come to real­iz­ing their potential.

Watch video with your team, prefer­ably before prac­tice, to max­i­mize learn­ing. If you have time, one-on-one ses­sions are par­tic­u­lar­ly helpful. 

Share playlists with play­ers so they can watch on their own. Include draw­ings and com­ments so they know exact­ly what to review. If you ref­er­ence your com­ments again the next day in prac­tice, the ath­letes will be more like­ly to retain the information.

You can’t teach every phase of the game in one video ses­sion, so each time we review video, we review it with respect to where our team is in our tac­ti­cal peri­odiza­tion plan for the sea­son,” Gallegos said. This allows us to break all of that infor­ma­tion into small­er more digestible bits that we then take on to the train­ing ground.”

Video is the ulti­mate devel­op­ment tool that will help your club win more games and get your play­ers to the next lev­el. Check out Hudl’s capa­bil­i­ties here.