SOCCER NETS SECURING OPTIONS
The need to secure nets to soccer goals can sometimes be problematic. If any coaches should find themselves with a requirement to install nets, but do not have net clips or ties that fit the apparatus, they should carry a back-up soccer net securing kit. The option below has the added benefit of not messing up the goals with duct tape or strapping tape.
A simple kit that has been demonstrated to work on all types of goals consists of the following:
Ropes – 4 pieces, 25- to 28-feet-long, 1/4-inch diameter, 6-strand nylon (burnished ends), white
Tent pegs – 16, plastic (colored – not green)
Ladder or step-stool – folding, 2-foot standing height
Hammer – standard
Velcro ties – 8
Carry Bag – canvas or heavy duty (non-rip) nylon
To secure a net, unfold the net completely behind the goal. Determine the upper corner of the net and, while standing on the ladder, loop it over the upper corner of the goal. Move the ladder to the other goalpost. Pull the net as tightly as possible along the crossbar and place the other upper corner of the net over the other upper corner of the goal. Move the ladder under the center of the crossbar. Tie one end of a rope around the crossbar, ensuring that the loop captures the upper edge of the net. Move the ladder approximately three feet toward one goalpost. Spiral (“candy-cane”) the rope tightly along the crossbar, again ensuring that the spiral captures the net. Continue this process to the corner of the goal and then down the goalpost. Tie off the end of the rope at the bottom of the goalpost. Move the ladder back to the center of the crossbar and complete the rope process for the other side of the goal.
Use the Velcro ties, if needed, to further secure the nets at the base of each goalpost. Stretch the net out behind the goal in order to prepare to attach it to the ground. To promote ball-capture, it is recommended that approximately one foot of the net be folded under itself around both sides and the back before tacking it down. Pull one corner straight back from the goalpost and secure it with a tent peg. Pegs should be hammered in at approximately a 45-dregree angle. Pegs should not be hammered all the way to the surface of the ground so that they can be more easily removed. Do the same at the other corner, then place up to six more tent pegs around the back and sides to hold the net in place as much as possible.
Another, somewhat more involved approach, uses 2”x4”x8’ pieces of lumber, five for each net, one each for the sides and three for the back. The wood, preferably “pressure-treated,” is drilled near each end and twice in the middle to accommodate spikes. Old-fashioned spikes from traditional “spike-and-ferrule” gutter installation work best. The lumber is simply placed over the nets and the spikes pushed through the holes into the ground. The wood can be painted to match team colors.
Repeat the process for the other goal.
Soccer Coaching Tips:
– There is a little bit of an art to find the proper length for each spiral, generally between three and four feet. Some of it is determined by the type of goal, but most comes with experience. Too short and the rope won’t appear to be long enough. Too long and the net will have gaps that hang below the crossbar. Too short also means more spirals – which takes more time.
– To get around really thick goalposts, two hook-and-loop (‘velcro”) ties can be fixed to each other to complete the attachment at the base of each goalpost.
– The knots of the ropes tied at the center of the crossbar can be placed behind the crossbar to reduce a possible influence on the ball if they are struck. None of the spirals of the ropes have ever been demonstrated to affect the path of a ball.
– Metal tent pegs must NOT be used because of the danger of sharp, cutting edges.
– Do not forget to retrieve all of the equipment at the end of the match.
© Copyright, John C. Harves