15 Foosball Tips for Beginners (That Actually Help You Win)

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Foosball is an incredibly fun sport, but it can be difficult for new players to know how they can beat more advanced foosers. Rather than getting frustrated and feeling like they don’t have a chance of winning the game, new foosball players can try out one of these 15 foosball tips for beginners.

trying to win at foosball

They are all designed to be easy to understand and to implement, making it possible for any foosball player to walk away the champion.

Stay in Control

It can be really tempting, especially in a fast-paced game, to try to hit the ball quickly and get rid of it as soon as it comes into your possession. This is a bad idea, as the person who controls the ball has control over the entire game. It’s a much better idea, once you come into control of the ball, to take your time and figure out your next shot. This will allow you to plan out your movements and any passes or shots that you want to take without feeling rushed and out of control.

Master a Shot

One of the most important things that players can do to win against most any competition is to learn a shot really well, master it, and stick with it. Doing so is a great way to ensure that you always have a fallback plan for when the game is not going well. When you have a shot mastered and know that you can always rely on it for the win or at least to turn the tide of the game, then you will feel much more confident.

Use Angled Shots

One problem that a lot of new foosers make when starting to play this sport is that they tend to hit the ball head on and sent it straight every time they hit it. This is not only highly predictable, but also very easy for your opponent to block. It’s important to learn how to hit balls at an angle, which allows them to ricochet off of the walls and become much more difficult to block. Hitting with the corner of the player’s feet is a skill that everyone needs to learn.

Keep the Goalie in the Center

It is really tempting to slide the goalie back and forth, and this movement can make some new players feel like they are really doing something in the game, but it usually backfires, especially for new foosers. Rather than moving the goalie at all times, which can make it harder for you to block the ball when it really matters, keeping him still and near the center of the goal is a great way to stop the ball. Move the goalie a little from side to side as necessary, but don’t slide him around from end to end.

Consider Your Grip

Your grip matters when playing foosball and will play a huge role in the amount of power that you are able to generate. Rather than spinning the rods wildly, which is never a good idea, controlling your grip is a much better way to add more power to the ball and to the shot. New players can benefit from taking time to consider their grip and the amount of power that they are able to add to their shots depending on how they hold the rod and how they move their wrist.

Rely on Short Passes

While long and powerful passes that leave the rods spinning widely are impressive and may be used by advanced or professional foosers, new players are much better off using short shots that are controlled. Not only are they easier to control, but they decrease the amount of time than an opponent can take control of the ball, which can help to prevent them from scoring. Opponents who can’t take control of the ball can’t score.

Use a Defender to Help Your Goalie

Many foosers make a huge mistake by leaving their goalie alone to defend the goal. This can make it much easier for the opponent to score and to win, which is why it’s a good idea to use a defender in addition to the goalie to block the goal. This additional barrier is a wonderful way to reduce the possibility of the opponent being able to score from all of the way across the table, which can be really embarrassing.

Shake it up

Great foosers are good at more than simply moving the ball and controlling it with their players, they also are wonderful at noticing patterns and paying attention to their opponent. This is bad news for players who consistently try to take the same shot over and over again. A great opponent will recognize what a player is able to do and where they struggle and will consistently place the ball so that it can’t be returned or blocked. Although a signature move is a good idea, it’s important not to try to use it all the time.

Watch the Two-Main Goalie Bar

It’s really common, and unfortunate, when new foosball players have a two-man goalie bar and don’t pay attention to the location of their goalies. Leaving the goalies split on either sides of the goal allows their opponent to easily target the goal and to score. It’s important to make sure that there is always someone guarding the goal at all times when using a two-man bar, which can be difficult for new players to remember, as they need to reset their bar from time to time.

Watch the Defenders

Defenders don’t do you any good if their bodies are angled down and they are parallel to the table. The only way that they can help you guard your goal and pass the ball down the field is if they are left in the correct and upright position. The benefits of this are twofold. Not only will this help to create an instant barrier that will stop the ball from rolling freely towards your goal, but it also makes it much easier to move a player and control them quickly.

Keep it Moving

New foosball players can easily become overwhelmed when playing against a strong opponent and will often stand there, useless, as the ball is moved around the table. Even when you are not sure that you will be able to defeat your opponent, it’s important to keep moving the rods and your players. This greatly increases the chance of you not only protecting your goal, but also taking control of the ball, which is key to going on the offensive. When on the defensive, keep moving rods and players to prevent the opponent from easily scoring.

Don’t Use the Center Man to Shoot

When you finally get control of the ball, then it can be really tempting to shoot from wherever you have it, but shooting with your middle man has a very low chance of actually going in. The better option is to pass the ball closer to your opponent’s goal so that you can correctly line up your shot. While this does take a little self control, as well as some additional forethought, it really is the best way to make sure that you are prepared to get a good shot.

Take a Lot of Shots

Goalies, by design, aren’t made to handle the ball, which means that blocked shots will simply bounce back so that you can try again. When playing on the offense it is a good idea to try to keep the opponent on their toes by rapidly firing as many shots as possible. At some point a ball will go into the goal. Fast and repetitive shots prevent the opponent from being able to recover the ball and go on the offensive themselves.

Stagger Your Players

When players are lined up directly in front of each other, then they’re not doing anything to help you block or pass the ball. Keeping your players separated and preventing them from getting into a line is the best way to make sure that you have as much coverage as possible. Staggered players are much harder to play against and will help you easily block shots and gain control of the ball.

Learn to Block Fast Shots

Fast shots, such as snake or pin shots, can be very difficult to block, especially for beginners. Rather than standing still or moving the players from side to side, slightly moving the players in response to the movements of the opponent will help to block these hard shots. Sometimes, simply slowly moving the players from an inch or two from side to side in anticipation is enough to make the opponent rethink their shot and ability to score.

With any of these 15 great tips in mind you are going to have a much easier time winning your next game quickly. Knowing these tips will give you the confidence that you need to compete with other players, even if they are much better than you at the sport. The next time you’re out with friends and want to play foosball, you are sure to feel more confident and will have a lot more fun.