How Fast Do Soccer Players Kick the Ball?

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Soccer is a popular sport that most people enjoy playing or watching. I’m sure you have a favorite player that you are always looking forward to watching when their team plays. But have you ever been curious about how fast the players kick the ball?

Let me tell you first that, on average, these players have maximum power when kicking the ball, it can go as fast as 70-80mph(112-128 km/h). However, these players’ speeds vary from each other because of their unique capabilities.

In this article, we’ll delve into the art of soccer kicks, exploring essential techniques and factors that every player should be aware of when handling the ball. So, let’s begin.

How Fast Can Soccer Players Kick The Ball?

On average, most professional soccer players can kick the ball at speeds ranging from 70 to 80 miles per hour. However, some players have managed to kick the ball even faster. 

Techniques, physical attributes, body weight, and various other aspects can all contribute to a soccer player’s kicking speed.

Also, the circumstance of the kicks (penalty, free kicks) determines how far the ball can be kicked. In penalty kicks, the ball is played from a stationary position where professional players can kick the ball at speeds between 60-80mph (97-129 km/h). While free kicks can range from 50-70mph (80-113 km/h) on average. 

All this speed depends on the technique and skill level of the professional players.

Basic Kicking Mechanics

Basic kicking techniques are essential, and soccer players excel because they have mastered them. If you want to learn how to kick a ball with power and accuracy, you’ve come to the right place. I’ll explain the fundamentals of basic kicking mechanics you need to know. 

Body Position

Make sure you stay steady over the ball. Lean forward a bit with your upper body and stretch out the arm opposite of the foot you’re kicking with to keep you steady.

Align your hips and shoulders with where you want the ball to go. If you want to kick it to the right, turn your hips and shoulders a bit to the right; do the opposite if you want to kick it to the left. 

As you approach the ball, maintain a balanced stride. Your non-kicking foot should be placed next to the ball, slightly to the side and behind it, with your toes pointing in the direction you want to go. 

Don’t forget to keep your eye on the ball throughout the whole process, from the approach to the point of contact with the ball. 

Core and Leg Muscles

As you approach the ball, your core muscles stabilize your torso, maintaining balance and preventing unnecessary twisting or tilting.

When you start the kicking motion, your core muscles help generate rotational force, allowing you to swing your leg with power and accuracy.

Meanwhile, your leg muscles, including the quads, hamstrings, and glutes, contract to extend and propel your leg toward the ball.

Throughout the follow-through, your core and leg muscles work together to maintain balance and control, ensuring an accurate and forceful kick.

Techniques For a Faster Kick

Make use of these techniques when kicking the ball: 

  • When you want to kick the ball, remember to swing your leg in a controlled way. First, bring your knee up like a backswing, and then swing your leg forward to kick the ball.
  • Aim to kick the middle or just a little below the middle of the ball. 
  • After you hit the ball, keep following through on the kick in the direction you want the ball to go. This helps make your kick stronger and more accurate. 
  • Always practice. When you learn these techniques, continuous practice makes you better at kicking the ball and improves your speed, power, and accuracy.

Factors That Affect Speed of Kicks 

Now that you know the techniques required to kick a ball, you should also know some major factors that affect the speed of the ball.

Strength and Power

You must have a strong body for better balance when kicking a ball. This determines the speed of the kick. That is why fitness and training are essential to having proper core strength. 

However, the strength and power vary depending on the gender of the player. For instance, a female player is not as strong as a male soccer player, which means the force a man will apply to kick a ball will be different from that of a woman. 

Also, a player’s age determines the strength and power of the player’s kick. The body of a youth soccer player is not as strong as that of a professional player, so the power with which a young player kicks the ball can not be like that of an older player. 

Weight and Agility

When you are overweight, the speed of your kick slows down, and this also reduces your agility on the field. 

Having a good body weight determines how fast you can kick a ball, which is why players go through serious training to maintain a certain weight. 

It’s good to have properly balanced muscle mass and body fat to deliver faster shots. 

Having a good weight increases your agility on the field in dribbling, passing, and kicking the ball. It also improves your balance in passing the ball from your non-kicking foot to your kicking foot. 

Mental Focus and Concentration

Kicking the ball at a fast speed requires a lot of focus. This is the point where you put all your techniques into use with precision.

When you’re focused, you will be able to gauge the perfect timing that produces powerful kicks. 

Concentration requires shutting out distractions, including cheering from crowds or the opposite team’s taunts. 

Surface Conditions 

The surface on which you play also determines the speed and accuracy of a kick. 

When you play on a smooth field, the ball rolls faster, so you can enjoy a smooth game. But when you play on a rough, muddy field, the game slows down, and this can ruin the kick speed. 

That is why soccer is played on smooth grass for professional players and artificial grass for younger players, ensuring everyone’s safety. 

Shoes and Cleats

Wearing the right cleats is also an important factor to consider in kick speed. 

You should wear a good cleat that is metal studded and grips the floor. This will make your kicking foot balanced and increase your speed and accuracy on the field. 

Professional Soccer Players – Maximum Potential Speed of a Kick   

Every soccer lover knows Christiano Ronaldo, one of the greatest soccer players in the world. He is also well-known for having great speed and agility. 

Christiano kicks a ball at an average speed of around 70-80mph (122-128km/h). In 2014, he was recorded to be one of the fastest soccer players in the world.

Another one of the fastest soccer players is Gareth Bale, a former Real Madrid player. In 2009, he was said to have almost stolen the title of “the fastest man in the world” from Usain Bolt after he clocked 40mph, 3mph less than Bolt’s record speed, during a game of soccer with Villarreal. He is famous for his incredible and powerful free kicks. 

The players mentioned above have undergone rigorous training to achieve these titles. They are constantly practicing and have developed techniques that they can apply when they are on the field. 

After a victory match against Newcastle in 2013, Bale mentioned that he practiced free kicks on the training ground for a very long time.

This shows that even after becoming professionals, they must keep practicing to maintain or increase the strength and power in their legs. They dedicate so much time to discovering more techniques that make them the world’s most skilled soccer players.


You now have a better understanding of the average soccer player’s kicking speed, the techniques they employ, and how you can apply these techniques to improve your skills as a player. 

Remember, even professional players began by learning the basics, just like you. So, you can start today and work towards becoming a skilled soccer player with impressive speed and accuracy.

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