For the last 17 years, Michael Magid has coached high level goalkeepers at the ODP and collegiate levels as a not only as a staff coach, but through his goalkeeper school LA Goalkeeping Academy (www.insidethe18media.com/lagka). Most recently, he has been co-host of the podcast “Inside the 18”, where he discusses all things goalkeeping with top goalkeepers from throughout the US and beyond. Check out their episodes at www.insidethe18media.com/podcast or search for “Inside the 18” on your favorite podcast app.
KeeperSpace: How would you describe your youth career?
Michael Magid: Depends on what you consider youth? If we're referring to youth soccer, almost non existent. I was primarily a basketball player up until high school. I randomly ended up in goal after playing pick up & taking an affinity to it. Didn't even get any proper goalkeeper training till I was an upperclassman. Fortunately, I got some opportunities my senior year & immersed myself in the game. Became a complete student. I feel that starting so late had it's drawbacks (foot skills, game awareness/reading the game) but also advantages (very few bad habits & developed great agility, hand/eye coordination, lateral movement from basketball). In college I got the opportunity to play at some decent levels & even trial in South America, so I would say my youth "Career" really began in college.
KeeperSpace: Why did you start LA Goalkeeping Academy?
Michael Magid: I started LAGKA because I wanted to reach more young keepers then just at one youth club. I saw so many kids out there in need & I wanted to do something to give what I could back to them.
The LA Goalkeeping Academy began as just a simple website to demonstrate my private goalkeeper training. I was tired of all the politics, and restrictions of working with just a club, or college. I wanted to do something different. From my few years as a personal trainer, I had learned that there was a strong market for private training/tutoring. At first, I tried Craigslist, word of mouth, placing ads in sports shops, but nothing worked. Everything looked very amateur. Then an old friend of mine (Arielle Jessel) posted about a company she worked for ( a marketing company) called RYB Marketing. I figured I would reach out and see if they could help me. Khalid Majid and RYB set up a website; a social media and marketing campaign and immediately I was getting business left and right. The issue was I was getting so many leads that I couldn’t service all of them because they were so spread out throughout SoCal. A friend of mine in the entertainment business suggested that what you should do is find other like minded coaches and hire them to take sessions for you at locations you can’t get to or times you can’t cover. So that’s what I did. I reached out to some goalkeeper coaches and former pro goalkeepers I knew (or was referred to) and I went from just myself running little private sessions to a staff of 8 coaches located throughout SoCal (as far as South Orange County and the Inland Empire). Within weeks the company tripled the sessions it could take on and LA Goalkeeping Academy was born. We now offer private training, but also group sessions with kids ranging from 8 years old to adults in their 30’s.
KeeperSpace: What sets LA Goalkeeping Academy apart from other goalkeeping schools?
Michael Magid: Accessibility. Most schools are located in one place & if you can't get there at that time or day then unfortunately it's not gonna happen. While we do have weekly clinics we also provide mobile private & group instruction where coaches will come to you & run sessions. We have an app that allows you to select a coach, time, place & type of session on your own (similar to Uber) to allow busy parents to get on with their day.
LA Goalkeeping Academy provides top of the line goalkeeper training to enhance athletic performance on the field. For 17 years, our goal keeper training plans have been mastered and proven for athletes at every level from beginners to professionals and everyone in between. Athletes can grow their skills tremendously with our goalkeeper skill training plans whether it be basic conditioning sessions or advanced technical training.
Our goalkeeper training sessions are available for both boys and girls and can be arranged for groups or singles for one-on-one training. Our goalkeeper training locations are in Los Angeles, Irvine, Glendale and West Lake but we also provide residential training sessions for your convenience. We have experience in goalkeeper skill training for recreational teams, high schools, youth clubs, college, professional teams and sports camps.
KeeperSpace: Is there one thing that you think today’s goalkeepers need to focus on?
Michael Magid: Their feet! Not just foot skills, but actually understanding their role playing out of the back & positional awareness how to handle pass backs & distribute the ball properly. Today's goalkeepers need to be quarterbacks out there (especially with the new rules allowing players to touch the ball on goal kicks inside the 18). You need to know how to play simple; possess with purpose & look to not just play a pass, but what that pass will lead to (several steps ahead). I see too many goalkeepers playing on the field thinking that teaches them how to play out of the back, but the fact of the matter is the risk for us (GK's) is much higher then let's say a #6 so we need to know how to play out of pressure & away from oncoming players, how to shield the ball properly, receive the ball (& ask for) away from the posts so any bad touch doesn't lead to a goal, etc. That being said, shot stopping is becoming a lost art & you STILL need to work on clean handling & footwork to play balls out of dangerous spaces & to not go in the net.
KeeperSpace: What made you start the Inside the 18 podcast?
Michael Magid: Delusion :P . JK. My friend Trevor Stiles (Owner of Aviata Sports) approached me about writing a blog for Aviata. I said that sounds like a lot of effort (writing words is hard), what if we just did a podcast instead? He was intrigued by the idea & after a little trial & error Inside the 18 began. At first it was just a side project to let us chat goalkeeping & mess around, but we started recognizing pretty early on that there was an audience for it. We started getting messages from people that people enjoyed what we are doing & that the content was really good. We went “people listen”? haha. So I started thinking bigger picture. I started recognizing there was value in what we were saying & I'd always wanted to combine my love of goalkeeping/coaching with my comedy & bring something special to the GK union. So I was like what if we did this a little more professional & incorporated other forms of content into what we do? That's when I reached out to Omar Zeenni (of Pro GK Academy) about coming on board as a co-host. At first he was a little hesitant (Pro GK took a heck of a lot of effort & energy) but after some convincing the current format of I18 was born & the rest is history :)
KeeperSpace: What can we look forward to in the future with Inside the 18?
Michael Magid: World domination. JK . Honestly the project has grown so quickly in such a short amount of time (from just a podcast to YouTube videos, Instagram, live events, touring clinics) this answer could change next month. We have just formally begun Inside the 18 Media LLC, a media company that comprises of producing edutainment (educational entertainment) that's goalkeeper specific. Our first properties are I18, Pro GK Academy, LAGKA to work synergistically together.
Currently we have a live tour for the summer 2019 (including MLS All Star Week in Orlando & Stan Anderson's camp shutout) on the calendar, GK clinics in the US & Canada, HUGE influencer collaborations & partnerships on YouTube & Instagram , a potential film/TV project, & of course the ‘ol fashioned podcast ;)
Anyone interested in getting involved can email email@example.com . We are always taking dev. pitches!
KeeperSpace: If you could give a young player advice who is looking to continue their career beyond high school or youth programs, what would it be?
Michael Magid: Confidence & belief in yourself. No matter what people tell you if you put the time & really want it you can make things happen. With work ethic & discipline anything. Become a student of the game. Work on your body & mind. Reach your ceiling physically & mentally. Expose yourself & network with others. The more people you know; the more opportunities will come your way. Be humble & be willing to start at lower levels & prove yourself. Get into coaching early as it can open playing doors & make you a better player. Don't let others determine you're own self belief. Basically you can make anything happen if you want it bad enough! Even if you are a sub six foot mediocre athlete like myself ;)