Dear Dr. Nutmeg: What's the best way to execute a bicycle kick?
- Sean McNichols, Toledo, OH
Two thoughts: Be like Pele (master and creator), and be careful-or you'll be cruisin' for a bruisin'! If you're crazy enough to try, it's all about timing. Practice the bicycle kick on a big bed or other soft surface with socks or Nerf balls. Concentrate on just hitting the ball, then progress to aim and direction. Watch how Pele did bicycle kicks by renting soccer videos, or ask Colorado Rapids star Marcelo Balboa, who helped his team win a game in 2000 and also scored for the U.S. team in 1991 with this fancy move. The next time a high pass comes your way, good luck!
Dear Dr. Nutmeg: I'm allowing players to wear small patches with their nicknames on their jersey sleeves, but we need help coming up with some. Do you have any suggestions?
- Coach Kraft, Los Angeles, CA
Of course! Choose from: Goalzilla, Pele, Dr. Defense, Dr. Dribble, Super Stopper, Super Striker, Kick-Flicker, Speedy, Crazy Cleats, Big Boot, Master Passer, Master Blaster, Mister/Miss Assist, Super G, Big K, Long Shot, Hot Shot, Fancy Foot. Or, be like the pros by using an athlete's name, playing style, nationality or background for inspiration. Examples are "the Beast" (Jaap Stam of Manchester United), "Pep" (Josep Guardiola of Barcelona), "Berger King" (Patrick Berger, with Liverpool), and "The Dutch Master" (Holland's Johan Cruyff).