Soccer Dribbling Drills for Kids and Beginners

Dribbling is one of the basic skills of soccer that every player has to master to be a dominant soccer player. Dribbling drills are a great way to learn.

In today’s game, even goalies need to have good foot skills. Check out some of these moves from Manuel Neuer.

The ability to keep the ball at your foot and dribble up the field past defenders is a vital skill in progressing to a great player. Agility, balance, body control, and quickness are essential skills for dribbling. It is also the most prized individual skill of the beautiful game. Think about players such as Pele, Maradonna, Ronaldo (Brazil), and Ronaldinho and Messi and how they have dazzled fans and stupified opponents. They became household names because of their dribbling skills.

Guess what though, they didn’t get there by luck or talent alone. As kids, they practiced dribbling while playing pickup in the streets or local parks. As professional players, they worked hard giving 100% in practice.

Top players use their dribbling skills to move around the field, creating space, beating defenders, and possessing the ball. Players should be so comfortable with the ball that it becomes second nature and they simply use their ability without thinking about it when they are on the field. 

As a soccer coach dribbling is one of the most important drills to incorporate into every practice. 

Why do you need to know how to dribble in soccer?

  • Being comfortable on the ball will help you keep your composure and make better decisions during the game.
  • Strong dribblers can draw multiple opponents leaving their teammates open for a pass. 
  • Dribbling can create space and relieve pressure. 
  • Keeping on your foot by dribbling helps maintain possession.

Soccer Drills For Practicing Dribbling

kid dribbling during a soccer dribbling drills

Little Kicks

This is one of the first dribbling exercises for beginner players. 

Objective

The objective is to get kids or beginner soccer players to start touching the ball with their feet and introduce them to dribbling. 

Equipment

All you need for this one is a soccer ball.

Setup

Have all players line up on the end line or any other line on the field. Have them face you. They can keep their hands behind their backs. This tends to naturally keep them from running too fast. 

Execution

Then have them start with little kicks traveling from the end line. Then have them turn around and repeat dribbling with little touches to where you are standing and repeat. 

Coaching tips

While the players are dribbling, keep talking to them and encouraging them to keep using little kicks. Make sure that each time they are only dribbling a short distance at a time. This will help them stay focused. 

Big Kicks

This is also an early dribbling drill for kids and beginner players. 

Objective

This drill helps beginners learn how to dribble with a little more pace and forces them to get their head up even if they don’t realize it. 

Equipment

All you need for this one is a soccer ball.

Setup

Have all players line up on the end line or any other line on the field. Have them face you. This time they should have their arms ready to pump while they run and to keep their balance. 

Execution

Using big kicks they should dribble the ball at a faster pace and for a longer distance. From the end line to where you are standing. Then move away from them and repeat. 

Coaching tips

While the players are dribbling, keep talking to them and encouraging them to use big kicks at a faster pace, and to keep their heads up so they can see where they are running. 

Volcano Game

An early dribbling drill for kids and beginner players. 

Objective

This drill teaches beginner soccer players to keep the ball under control and close to their bodies. The objective is to make it through the field of volcanoes without touching them.

Equipment

You will need cones and each child will need a soccer ball.

Setup

Have all players line up in a line together on one side of the field with the balls. Then randomly place the cones in the playing area in front of them. Make sure they are space out.

Execution

Players then dribble from one side of the field to the other avoiding the cones. If they touch the cones their soccer ball melts!

Coaching tips

You can also adapt this drill so that the cones are Sharks, mines, monsters, or anything else that you can think of that might want to grab or eat their soccer balls.

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