Futsal & Soccer, bilingual buddies


Not too long ago the thinking was that infants learning two languages simultaneously would have trouble fully developing the primary one. Kids would be mediocre in two languages instead of proficient in one. In reality the brain becomes more agile when exposed to multiple languages. When more cognitive demands are placed on your noggin, the more it rises to the occasion. You simply get smarter.

Not too long ago a youth soccer coach at my club considered the idea that futsal interfered with the ability to learn soccer. Toe pokes and sole traps would confuse and confound once wood was switched out for grass. After training competitive futsal players for seven years now, the question seemed absurd to me. Players with a futsal background think quicker, make better decisions, and show more composure than players that only play soccer. It’s not even close. One can also point to Ronaldinho, Neymar and countless others who perfected their craft through futsal. However the concern voiced by the coach is legit. If you’ve never played or coached futsal, it’s natural to be skeptical about it. It took some courage for him to open that door. Most remain silent with their doubts. The question opened up a discussion worth delving in to. I only worry that the question is not being asked enough. The sooner it’s asked at your club, the sooner it gets answered. Buena suerte.



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