How To Improve Your Dribbling Skills
Undoubtedly, having the ability to dribble past defenders shows confidence and an undeniable control over the ball — it can make a good player into a great one, easily. Whether it’s to trick a defender, engineer open space for a pass, or to buy time, dribble moves become incredibly important to the individual player. Ball control is key here and every professional soccer player has it. Learning to deceive defenders with the ball has become a staple in many athlete’s abilities. There’s a variety of wonderful, creative tricks out there, so don’t stop here! But, courtesy of CoachUp, here is an overview of some simple skills that will help you develop your dribbling game:
- Foundation — touch the ball back and forth between the inside of each foot.
- Toe Touches — touch the ball with the bottom of your feet, alternate each foot with each tap. As you get better and more comfortable, turn up the speed! The faster you are, the closer it’ll mimic game speed.
- Step On The Ball — use the bottom of your foot to pull the soccer ball back and turn.
- Inside Foot Turn — chop the soccer ball around your body with the inside of your foot to turn.
- Outside Foot Turn — chop the soccer ball around your body with the outside of your foot to turn.
- Cruyff Turn — fake a kick or shot but use the inside of kicking foot to pull the ball back in the other direction behind your standing leg and turn.
- Step-over — step over the ball around the outside with the inside of foot and then turn the other direction with the other foot. Link multiple step-overs in row to really get the defender’s head spinning!
- Maradona Spin — step on the ball with one foot as you spin and pull the ball back with the sole of the other foot. Named after Diego Maradona, World Cup Winner with Argentina in 1986.
- Stanley Matthews — use the inside of one foot and pull the ball twice in one direction (lean that way to sell it) and then quickly use the outside of the same foot to push it the opposite direction.
- Scissor Kick — step over the ball from the inside leading with outside of one foot, and push with outside of other foot.
- Double Scissor Kick — same as above, stepping over one more time with the other foot.
- Martin’s Move –fake a shot or pass with inside of foot but roll right over the top of the soccer ball instead and stop it with the outside of that same foot.
- Stop + Go — step on the ball as if you are going to pull it back and turn but continue to go forward with a quick touch. The idea here is to change your pace quickly and get the defender off balance.
(Related: Read about controlling the ball here.)
Being able to use both feet when performing each of these dribbling skills is also beneficial to your game. Becoming confident with your ability to control the ball is key. You need to be confident if you’re ever going to try one of these moves in a game. Practice, practice, practice! During water breaks and when waiting around for soccer training to start, try getting as many touches on the ball as you can. This extra practice will help you become more comfortable with the ball.
Since soccer training drills are typically pre-planned and team-oriented, it may be helpful to set some additional time aside to perfect these dribbling skills. Putting in the extra work to improve your ball handling will help take your game to another level. If you’re still struggling with some of these moves, consider booking one of CoachUp’s private trainers. Your confidence and technical skills on the ball will improve in no time — what are you waiting for?