Soccer players should be adept with both feet. Naturally, most of us favor one or the other.

Kicking, passing and shooting all necessitate propelling the ball. However, there are some differences.

There are various ways to kick the ball, but the most common for distance is with the instep. CAPTION: Illustration 1, FIGURE 1. Position of the right kicking foot at impact: toe pointed down allows the left eyelets of the shoe to make contact with the ball.

To make it easier to kick with better accuracy, the approach should be from an angle and the kicking foot should extend and follow through in line with the flight of the ball. The nonkicking foot should be positioned alongside the ball and the head should be down and over it.

To put more loft on the ball, position the nonkicking foot a little behind the line of the ball. The body will incline backwards and on impact the thrust will send the ball into the air.

Two more difficult types of kicks are a "sliced" kick and the "banana" kick. These are mostly used for playing the ball around and behind an opponent or on corner kicks. Johan Cruyff perfected both.; Illustration 2, FIGURE 2. The slice: The player approaches the ball from a more acute angle. The outside part of the right instep strikes across the ball, left of center, creating a slicing effect. The nonkicking foot is positioned to the left and slightly behind the ball.; Illustration 3, FIGURE 3. Banana kick: A similar approach as in Figure 1. The right-foot instep strikes across the ball, creating a 'bending' line of flight on the ball.; Illustration 4, FIGURE 4. Volley kick: Another difficult kick, mostly used by defenders on clearances is the volley kick. Because the ball may reach a player at any height and trajectory, accurate timing and judgment are necessary to make the instep contact while the ball is still in the air. Eyes on the ball is a must!

Good defenders often begin attacking movements with controlled volley kicks to waiting forwards. Mark Freeman -- The Washington Post; Design by Carol Porter