Soccer penalty kick pre-impact cues of male right-footed high school soccer players

Jason Ryan Jones


The purpose of this study was to use direct observation methods to collect evidence of pre-impact cues in a soccer penalty kick and to analyze their predictive powers in determining shot direction. The five pre-impact cues were position of the approach run, alignment of the hips, lean of trunk, placement of non-kicking foot, and action of the non-kicking side arm. Video was collected and then analyzed using a Dartfish(TM) tagging panel. There were a total of fifty male high school right-footed participants. Coaches from area high school soccer teams provided their top penalty kick takers to participate in the study. Video was collected on the team's practice/game site from two vantage points; from the goal line and behind the penalty arch. Logistic regression analysis revealed evidence that the pre-impact cues were effective in predicting shot direction, with the alignment of the hips and the trunk lean significant indicators of shot direction (p<.001). Further chi-square analyses of the individual pre-impact cues revealed each was a significant shot direction indicator (p <.001).