We thought about buying a portable rebound net/wall. But if we left them out, the elements would take their toll on the net and poles and we would be looking for a replacement (again) in a year or two. Plus, we already knew how much fun it was to kick against my trial wall, and we were happy with the three years it gave us.
Long story short, we decided to build a wall.
Our Supply List:
- six bags of cement
- three 4x4x8 treated posts (edited 6-9-14)
- Fifteen 1x6x10 treated decking boards (13 to make the face of a six foot high wall, and a couple spares)
While my hubby and I went for supplies, they did an awesome job digging the three post holes. Each needed to be 24 inches deep and roughly 18 inches in diameter.
When we got home, they helped set each post in its hole, mix the concrete, and brace them in line, making sure to keep them plum.
After the concrete was set, they removed the braces and attached the decking boards. It wasn’t hard. They just had to make sure the first board was level. The rest went up easy!
Using galvanized screws is a good idea, and making sure the screws are set below the surface of the wood is very important. Otherwise, the balls could be damaged.
I was really proud of them for the job they did.
They had the face of the kicking wall up in no time, and even mulched around the base.
Once it was up, they tested it out and decided it needed a little more bracing on the back.
We found enough old 2x4s and 2x3s laying around to add a 6 foot vertical brace to each edge, plus one between each 4x4 post.
Holding the brace in place from the back, someone screwed the face boards to it from the front. The added braces firmed up and flattened out the kicking surface very nicely. The boys even sanded the edges. :)
The extra deck board on the top is mainly just to protect the tops of the posts.
The new wall was up and in use within a week of removing the old one. If you look closely, you’ll see they added targets to the corners using sidewalk chalk.
I really recommend something like this for every little soccer player. My boys are out there every single day. It can be a lot of fun whether you have just one player, or a dozen. It’s also great to practice on whether you are a beginner, or a veteran.
When we scrimmage, we use our portable second-hand soccer net (you can see it in the sixth picture) as the other goal . Depending on the age of the players, we can adjust the field length by moving it closer or father away.
Incidentally, the wall doubles nicely as a backyard backstop for the occasional neighborhood baseball game. :)
This will no doubt be the last soccer practice wall we will have to build.
If they start kicking holes in this one, their future in pro-soccer will no doubt enable them to afford much better systems…on their own estates! Lol!