Stages of Development

The punt or AFL kick is a complex skill to master as it involves kicking a moving ball whilst it is still in the air. Introduce around the age of 5-6 years with round, soft balls and don't expect children to master this skill until the age of 10 years or older.

Teaching cues
  • Hold ball with laces facing forward
  • Nose to toes (head over ball)
  • Step & drop ball 
  • Kick with toes pointed (ballet dancer kicks)
Teaching strategies

  • Start by kicking with soft round balls off the ground then progress to holding the round ball and kicking
  • Practice stepping and kicking, use markers for where to step
  • Play fun kicking games such as Discovering Punting and Over the River
  • Focus on providing plenty of opportunity to kick all types of balls and kicking for distance rather than accuracy

  • Introduce AFL and rugby balls
  • Try kicking off 2,3, 4 and 5 steps and then as children get the hang of this introduce kicking on the run
  • Play fun activities such as Titanic, Rapid Fire and Shrink and Grow

  • Use a full size AFL or rugby ball
  • Practice kicking for accuracy in front of goals from different distances
  • Introduce different types of kicks
  • Work on increasing the distance of the kick
  • Encourage the child to guide the ball down with one hand
  • Play activities such as Six or Safe and small sided games of AFL or rugby
Skill criteria
  • Eyes focused on the ball
  • Balls held lace forward at hip height
  • Step forward onto non-kicking foot
  • Ball connects with straight instep
  • Backward lean of the trunk
  • Hand matching kicking foot guides ball down towards foot
  • Arm opposite kicking leg lifts forward and sideward
  • Follow through with kicking leg toward target area
Common errors
  • Ball is thrown in the air rather than dropped on to the kicking foot
  • Looking up rather than down at the ball
  • Connecting with the wrong part of the ball - the ball should spin backward end over end if the foot is connection with the base of the ball

More punt activities