After months of preparing for the 2016 season, my youth football players finally are prepared for their first regular-season games. We began with conditioning in June and introduced pads in early July. One of the other things we introduced this season is the Tackle Tube.
My youth-level players weren’t quite sure about them at first, but when they realized that they could receive the exact same instruction without the constant collisions, they quickly became big fans of the practice tools. Most important, my coaching staff is able to use the Tackle Tubes to reinforce proper tackling technique and form.
The Tackle Tubes help us teach younger players learning the game to keep their heads out of tackles. From the youngest levels of football to the pros in the NFL, the "Heads Up USA" initiative has promoted this technique over the past several years, and the injuries related to head trauma have been on the decline with the removal of head-to-head tackling.
Tackle Tube USA has been a great supporter of this initiative. In my years of being a youth league coach, I’ve always promoted a safe tackling technique. The introduction of the Tubes has helped me provide better instruction. Especially given the ages of the players I coach, when my players are less concerned about constant contact in practice, they are more focused and ready to attack the drills at 100 percent. This has shown in the games as well. Muscle memory has kicked in and their tackles are more automatic and consistent.
There is no substitute for intensity and aggression. They can be improved upon with confidence and competence. I’ve seen, early on this season, that the Tackle Tubes have delivered exactly what I’ve been looking for in a training tool. I’d recommend them to all coaches at all levels.
© 2016, Dan Hancock. All rights reserved.
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