The Chest Control

Controlling an aerial ball with the chest is not always an easy task. Many footballers simply avoid using their chests to control the ball, in favour of the feet or knees. Chest control is, however, an extremely efficient way of bringing a ball in flight under complete control.

Ronaldinho is a true maestro of chest control.

Chest Control

Chest Control

As we see in the video image, Ronaldinho is suddenly confronted with a fast-moving, upper chest, head height ball thrown in from the touchline. He aligns himself with the incoming ball and adjusts his position slightly to receive the ball as it begins to drop.

Crucial to chest control is arching the back slightly, as Ronaldinho does, and presenting a relaxed upper chest to cushion the incoming ball. The best way to present a backward inclining chest is to lower the position of the midriff by positioning one foot forward and bending the knees, achieving a stable platform-like stance.

Ronaldinho is so efficient at controlling the ball in the video that it rests on his chest for a second or so as if it were a platform. Consequently he is able to control the ball a second time with his chest and direct it so as to execute a pass to his fellow player. Directing the ball with the chest is perhaps something that should be practised once simple chest control is mastered, but is an excellent way to integrate an extra move in your first touch and buy yourself time to make that next pass.

Ronaldinho Chest Control

Occasionally, as a player, it can be necessary to control the ball as it bounces awkwardly from the ground. Chest control in this case can also be a very successful method of bringing the ball under control. In this situation one must position the chest above the bouncing point of the ball and with a downward inclination so as to deflect the ball towards the ground, to be controlled later with the feet.

Ronaldinho Chest Control part two

Controlling the ball effectively with your chest is a very valuable skill in football and is worth spending time to perfect. It not only allows you to control the ball efficiently, but also buys you time, permits a change in direction or if you are Ronaldinho, to do something a bit like what he does in the second video…