In soccer, dribbling is the skill of moving the ball around the field, by use of the feet, unassisted by other players. For the Instructional Soccer Program, the basic concepts of dribbling include keeping the ball as close to the feet as possible in order to maintain control of the ball; using the correct part of the feet to contact the ball in order to maintain balance of the body and achieve the desired result; and ultimately using peripheral vision to see the ball in order to keep as much of the field in sight as possible during the performance of the skill.
At the introductory level, however, the most important aspect of dribbling is simply getting the players used to moving the ball around with any part of their feet.
The coach should clearly identify and demonstrate the use of :
of both feet to be used in dribbling.
Dribbling in a Confined Space
Introduce the “Irish Jig” (a.k.a., Mexican Hat Dance, Hat Dance, Tap Dance or Toe Tap). Balancing using the left leg, players should tap the top of a stationary ball with the sole of their right foot (preferably with the “ball” of the foot or the toes); players should then switch legs. Players should then alternate feet and try to build up speed.
Introduce how to “Make an airplane.” Balancing using the left leg, players should place the sole of the right foot on the ball and stretch out their arms to the sides to maintain balance; players should then switch legs.
(Initially, mark off a space smaller than the grid… Can use parents to define space…)
Everybody “dribble” – no instruction, just use your feet to move the ball around (everybody dribble “to somewhere else within the grid;” “to other green space;” “to a corner of the grid;” “to the middle;” “to your mom or dad”…)
Non-moving ball – put the bottom (sole) of the right foot on top; switch to left foot on top; switch to right – add hop; switch to left – add hop; switch to right – toe tap; switch to left – toe tap; (challenge – alternate feet toe tap – “Irish Jig.”)
“Kangaroo Hop” up to the ball; put sole of one foot on top of ball. (Make an airplane.)
Run up to standing ball, put sole of foot on top of ball. (Make an airplane.)
Dribble/stop… by putting sole of foot on top of ball. (Make an airplane.)
After instruction – right foot only; left foot only; inside of right foot only; inside of left foot only; outside of right foot only; outside of left foot only.
“Go/freeze” while dribbling; “All-fall-down/get back up fast” while dribbling.
Dribble in a line around the perimeter of the grid (left turns); reverse direction (right turns).
“Dribble Snake” follow the leader in a line anywhere inside grid. (Advanced challenge… Leader breaks off upon request and dribbles to the back of the line – creates the next leader – can be done until everyone leads…)
Dribble – Stop ball (anyway you want with foot) – turn around and dribble back the way you came.
Dribble – stop ball with sole of foot – PULL BALL BACK WITH SOLE of foot – turn around, dribble.
Dribble fast/Dribble slow.
“Make-A-Circle, right (counter-clockwise) then left (clockwise), first just with ball – using inside of foot, then around a disc or cone, then around a parent.
Dribble around obstacles – discs, cones, and/or standing parents. (Challenge – parents move)
Dribble to objectives – corner flags, cones.
Dribble through “gates” (pairs of cones or saucers; or parents’ legs). (Challenge – count the number of “goals” scored during a given period of time.)
“Circle-and-Go” – “Make-A-Circle” around a cone, dribble to another cone, make-a circle around it; continue…
“Coerver Base Move” (inside of feet, one-touch, foot-to-foot, back-and-forth)
Challenge – while slow dribbling, look for and then fast dribble to an open area.
(Use sole-of-foot stop on the ending line…)
Inside of right only; inside of left only; outside of right only; outside of left only.
FOR DETAILED INFORMATION ON HOW TO TEACH THIS SKILL, SEE: Introduction To Dribbling
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