Soccer Drills TO IMPROVE SOCCER SKILLS

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Soccer drills are used to improve various soccer skills.

Players need to learn how to be comfortable with the ball at their feet, and that is what many soccer drills for youth players aim for, repetitive touches on the ball to improve control.

Main goal for ball control training is to maximize number of touches on the soccer ball in any training session for younger players.

I strongly believe in the rule of 10,000 hours to master any skill.

10,000 hours of touching the soccer ball, and controlling it with different parts of the foot, changing direction and being creative, will lead to great soccer skills with the soccer ball.

Simply practicing 2 – 3 times a week, and playing the game on the weekends, WILL NOT produce players who possess flair, creativity and magic touches on the soccer ball.

Developing best skills on the ball takes hours and hours of additional practice, outside of regular training.

My training sessions with young players include over 1000 touches on the soccer ball, within the hour that they spend with me.

That is more touches in one hour, than many games combined together.

After the initial first few weeks, players will improve their touch on the ball simply due to repetition and 1000s of touches in training.

I always encourage players to train at home, on their own, or with friends and family.

Some of the soccer drills are timed, while others are done in repetitions and sets.

Soccer drills for improving ball control go hand in hand, or foot in foot haha,  with coordination and agility.

Coordination and agility develop quicker footwork for better and easier control of the soccer ball. 

Soccer is one of the most physically demanding sports in the world.

It requires stamina to withstand different running speeds, change of direction, and controlling the soccer ball through dribbling, passing, shooting etc...

Young soccer players develop different soccer skills through constant repetition through various soccer drills, and guidance in developing positive habits and technique. 

In soccer, players constantly move around the field, supporting attack and defense.

When we get tired, our muscles absorb all the oxygen we breathe in, making us lose focus and concentration on the ball, which leads to missing  shots, or losing possession of the ball.

This ultimately leads to loss of confidence, and bad decision choices in the game.

To avoid getting tired quickly, improve your soccer conditioning through different soccer conditioning drills.

Running is torture for many players, but the will to compete, and learning how to enjoy running, is how great players are made.

"No one has ever drowned in sweat." by Lou Holtz

Soccer is a game where consistency wins. Consistent training, paired with different soccer drills will improve players soccer skills over time.

Professional soccer players worked really hard to get where they are, and work even harder to stay at the top of their game.

They go through different training routines for various parts of the soccer game.

Professionals train 2 - 3 times daily, and play 1 or 2 games weekly.

Being match fit takes sweat, hard work and most importantly, DEDICATION.

CONSISTENCY + HARD WORK + DEDICATION = SUCCESS

soccer drills with the ball

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Inside / Outside Touches - Right Foot; control the soccer ball in a zig zag motion across the body for 60 - 90 sec. NO STOPPING!

Inside / Outside Touches - Left Foot; control the soccer ball in a zig zag motion across the body for 60 - 90 sec. NO STOPPING!

Inside / Outside Touches - Alternating Feet; control the soccer ball in a zig zag motion across the body using the inside and outside of both feet for 60 - 90 sec. NO STOPPING!

Gates - Control the soccer ball using the inside of both feet. Keep the soccer ball square with your shoulders and make contact with the soccer ball using the inside of the feet.   

Roll Across Body, Inside Opposite Foot Control - Roll the soccer ball with the right foot across your body, control the ball with the inside of the (opposite) left foot. Roll the ball across body again with the sole of the left foot and control the ball with the inside of the (opposite) right foot. Find a rhythm and continue for a set time.

Pull Back Inside - Use the sole of the foot to pull the soccer ball back, and then kick the ball out with the inside of the same foot. Continue with the same foot, or alternate feet. It is important to lock your ankle and point the toes up when kicking the ball out.

Express with the Soccer Ball - Dribble the ball with freedom to experiment and try different skills with the ball. Keep the pace up to maximize touches and creativity with the soccer ball.

FAST PACED, NO STOPPING, FREESTYLE with the BALL for 2 minutes!

soccer drills with cones and agility ladder

You will need agility ladder, 2 soccer balls and 12 cones for this soccer drill.

Set up the ladder with 6 cones on each side spaced as needed; closer for higher difficulty, further apart for easier difficulty.

Make one side of the cones in linear shape, and the opposite side in a zig zag shape.

Place one soccer ball on each side of the ladder.

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Start this soccer drill by running through the agility ladder, picking up the soccer ball as you exit the agility ladder, and dribble the ball through the six cones; and back again through the cones.

Leave the soccer ball in front of the ladder and run through the ladder once again from the opposite side, pick up the second soccer ball and dribble it through the zig zag cone formation and back again through cones.

Once the ball is brought back to the starting point, one repetition is completed.

Repeat 3 - 4 times for a completed set. Attempt 3 - 4 sets x 3 - 4 repetitions.

Focus on controlling the soccer ball close to your feet as you go through the cones. Every step should follow with a touch on the ball.

SOCCER TRAINING TIPS:

  • Different Ladder Runs you can do with this soccer drill.
  • Right foot only through the cones.
  • Left foot only through the cones.
  • Alternating feet through the cones.
  • Roll across body, push forward with opposite inside foot and roll again with the opposite foot.

This soccer drill is just one way to set up. You can build upon it by being creative and focusing on having fast footwork, lots of ball touches, and different turns throughout the exercise.

3 - 4 SETS x 3 - 4 REPETITIONS - WATER BREAK AS NEEDED

cone square soccer drills for ball control

Set up a square using 4 cones, about 10 - 15 m/yd apart.

Place the 5th cone in the center of the square.

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Start this soccer drill by dribbling the soccer ball from cone 1 to, and around cone 2 (black line).

From cone 2 player will dribble the soccer ball to cone 3 in a figure 8 motion, coming back with the soccer ball around the center cone 2 (black line).

Dribble the ball to and around cone 4, bringing it back and around the center cone in a figure 8 motion (blue line).

Finish with dribbling the ball around cone 5, bringing the ball back around the center cone, and finishing with touches to the starting cone for 1 completed repetition. 

To simplify this soccer drill start at cone 1 and use the center cone to go around the square, dribbling the soccer ball to the center cone and out to the next cone, until all the cones have been dribbled around.

Keep the soccer ball close to your body and focus on control with every step. Get creative with different turns, rolls and control.

SOCCER TRAINING TIPS

  • Limit touches to only right foot x4
  • Limit touches to only left foot x4
  • Use both feet x4
  • Roll the ball across body x4
  • GET CREATIVE...

Lots of touches and lots of cuts will develop better control.Keep the soccer ball close, and attempt to control the ball with every step to maximize the touches on the soccer ball.

3 - 4 SETS x 3 - 4 REPETITIONS - WATER BREAK AS NEEDED

soccer drills with cones & soccer ball

Finish off practice with dribbling through cones, and taking a shot on goal.

I usually have my players train with a mix of straight line cones, and zig zag cones.

There are two ways of doing this exercise, and the picture below is the option that maximizes touches on the soccer ball.

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Player will start with the back turned to goal.

Control the soccer ball through the cones all the way to the end.

Once at the end, turn around the last cone and continue with dribbling the soccer ball through the cones again, bringing the ball to the starting point. 

Two green cones are there so that the player can pick left or right side to make space and follow up with a shot on goal to complete 1 repetition.

Soccer Training Tips:

  • Keep the soccer ball close to your feet, and try to touch the ball with every step.
  • Focus on technique and control, rather than speed.
  • Right foot only.
  • Left foot only.
  • Both Feet.
  • Roll the soccer ball, and get creative with controlling the soccer ball around the cones.
  • HAVE FUN and GET CREATIVE!!!

Any soccer drill can be used to make your own version of the drill. As long as you put the time and effort, touches will improve.

SOCCER DRILLS

soccer shooting/attacking drills

  • Soccer Shooting Drills will help players develop their kicks on the soccer ball. There are different kinds of shooting techniques in soccer. Knowing the right way to kick the ball is crucial to firm and precise shooting.
  • Soccer Shooting Tips to learn the proper shooting technique and positive habits for shooting the soccer ball.
  • Fun Soccer Drills using games with attacking drills through crossing, or shooting.

soccer passing drills

  • Soccer Passing Drills are focused on repetitive passing of the ball, while the player uses the right technique in locking his/her ankle, and making firm contact on the ball.
  • Soccer Passing Tips and Technique for passing the soccer ball with pace and accuracy.
  • Four Squares passing soccer drill.
  • Possession Game for improving passing soccer skills.
  • Back Pedal for lots of passes and movement.
  • Small Sided Games to apply in training and help with young soccer players development passing, quick thinking, dribbling, creativity and decision making.
  • Soccer Practice Drills to help players learn how to move the soccer ball wide, and attack from crosses, and wide areas of the field.
  • Soccer Passing and Receiving Drills to help players get more comfortable on the soccer ball. Players will learn to receive the ball, and move after the pass is complete. 

soccer ball control drills

  • Ball Control Soccer Drills to help players get more familiar with the surface of the ball.
  • Soccer Training Drills to improve players ball control skills. Getting familiar with the soccer ball takes time, consistency and effort.
  • U10 Soccer Training Drills to improve ball handling skills, agility, coordination, and speed.
  • Soccer Drills for Beginner soccer players U8 and U6. These soccer drills can also be adapted to older kids by changing the pace, and adding few skills.
  • Small Sided Games to teach youth soccer players how to play soccer through the game being the Coach. Players will fall in love with the game from simply playing soccer.
  • This Soccer Drill is many kids favorite soccer training drill in practice. The game is the Coach, while players enjoy competitive side of soccer in smaller spaces.
  • First Touch Soccer Drills to help young players work on their passing, receiving, and moving. Smart players, with great ball control, will use their first touch to get out of tight situations, and surrounding defenders.

SOCCER FITNESS, SPEED AND AGILITY

  • Agility Ladder Drills, also called Speed Ladder Drills, are very important for soccer players to develop agility, and speed.
  • Soccer Agility Drills are used to improve players balance, footwork, and coordination. Change of direction is frequent throughout the game, so being agile, and able to quickly change direction is really important.
  • Soccer Conditioning Drills will build up the players endurance for the WHOLE game. Players usually frown on these soccer drills, as they push them to exhaustion point; but prepare them for the game. Fit player is twice as valuable for any team in a match.
  • Speed Training Drills will push players to build up their explosive speed, tight cornering, and the ability to speed up, and slow down their pace. These drills will build up the players endurance, and shorten the recovery after sprints.