Conditioning drills

Here is a list of soccer conditioning drills and games to do for 10 minutes or so. Some can go longer, but don’t try them all in one practice!

Dribble warm-up: dribble in box; at ‘GO!’, sprint to farthest line and back into box; at ‘NUMBER!’, form a group of that number; last ones to make it do 10 press-ups.

Box relays: set out enough grids of 9 cones that you can divide your team into groups of 3-4, each group with its own grid. The grid looks like this:

conditioning drills

Each grid makes a little box and a big box. Run a series of relay races – 1. each runner goes around the small box and then the big box, with no ball, touching each cone with his/her hand as she passes it (best with flat cones); 2. each runner dribble around the small box, then the big box, and passes to the next runner after clearing the last corner; 3. each runner dribbles around the small box, then the big box, using a specified turn for each corner (pull-back/spin; tap behind standing foot; scissors; etc.). Alternate directions so they must use both feet! The purpose of having a little box and a big box is to vary the pace at which they must go to maintain control of the ball.

Lane races: set up 4-5 lanes with flat cones appx 35 yds long; straight dribble right, left, choice, cone weave right, left, choice

Horseshoe: set out 8 cones in square (one at mid-side on each side); divide in groups; dribble & trot 7 gaps, then sprint one gap; next time 6 & 2, then 5 & 3, all the way to 7 sprint and 1 trot

Amoeba: small groups with 2 cones each; lead takes off and sprints until catches back up to end; new lead takes off; all w/ ball & dribbling; rest of group trots

Switch field: groups of 3; pass from edge to edge; rotate every 2 minutes.

3-fly: groups of 3 goal to goal for time; 3 times so each is in middle once; set limits such as 2-touch or 1-touch; cannot shoot until coach ok’s

Wall Pass Ladder: stagger 6-8 players in zigzag; one takes a ball down the middle, passing and receiving wall from each side alternately

Pass relay race: one group at corners of box or pentagon; pass around perimeter to beat a runner from the other team; keep score by teams

Team relays: set in team alignment; pass F LM CM RM RS LS LD CD RD W G; a runner goes the same path & tries to beat the ball; when runner is done, replaces a field player; from goalie, work back up in opposite sequence

Pair Pass Challenge: series of connected boxes (approx 10x10x6 boxes); D at back of each box; cannot leave back line until someone enters box; pairs try to go thru all boxes; who can go farthest?

Dribble w/ front challenge: in pairs, one in front is passive defender; each time D changes stance to adjust, A moves dribble to other side

Dribble w/ rear challenge: In pairs, D behind; A must dribble away & shield ball; change sides by touching with inside of foot closest to defender, then outside of foot away from defender; each time passive D changes sides.

5-ball: set 5 balls in a row on the 18 yd box top line, spread within the edges of the circle; 2 girls start from opposite intersections of the 18 yd box and the restraining circle; at GO, they race diagonally to circle around a cone at the intersection of the end line and the goal box, loop around and straight back up to the intersection where their challenger started, and around to shoot the nearest ball. Back down the diagonal, around, and straight up, to shoot the second ball. Back down around and up to see who can get to the remaining ball and shoot it first. Great conditioning, tight turns, and shooting.

BALL!: Coach with lots of balls stands in goal; two kids stand out between goal and 18 yd box. One team-mate is assigned to count shots on goal for one player, another counts the second player; other teammates shag loose balls; for 2 minutes the coach feeds balls and shouts ‘BALL!’ as he does; kids fight to shoot the live ball; if they go too far or take too long, just feed another ball! Begin by working them out away from the goal, gradually make the feeds closer to the goal until they are hitting headers, volleys, etc in the goal mouth. Manipulate the throws to keep things fairly close. This is easier with a count-down timer on your watch.

2v2v2: Use the penalty area as a boundary. 3 teams of 2; i.e. 2 reds, 2 blues, 2 yellows. GK in goal. Teammates line the 18 yard box with balls. Coach puts ball in play. It’s always 2 attackers vs. 4 defenders. The ball and players may travel within the goal box, but shots must be taken outside of it. If a ball leaves playing area, nearest player on touch tosses another up, then shags. All balls caught by GK are restarted by GK. When one team scores, the other 2 swap out. LOTS of action, emphasis on shooting at the 1st chance, partner moving open in front of the goal.

Turn’n’go: from front of goal, A faces goal with ball in front; D behind facing away & touching; when A goes, D turns to chase down before shoots

3v2+G: 1D in front, 1D behind; pass to space & overlap

3v1, 4v2, 5v3: keep-away

3v3: with extras divided into 3’s; whenever one team scores, the replacement team from the other end starts immediately with their own ball; they should try to ‘fast break’ against the team that just scored.

Progressive sprints: jog in line; last one sprints to front, then slows down; as soon as you are last, you start your sprint, so a sequence are sprinting

Dribble sprints: 1 min. Back/forth across goal box, then penalty box, then penalty to midline, then goal to midline, back down; who can do the most lengths in each 1 min. period?