Soccer Drills Without Cones or Balls

Many soccer drills have cones and balls. This is a collection of drills, some without cones and some without balls. We do have more without either of these if you’re looking for fitness drills.

If need to use a marker instead of a cone, you can use pinnies or other apparel that you have spare.

Soccer Training Field
Soccer Training Field ○ Soccer Blade

Soccer Drills without Cones or Ball

Dribble Between the Squares: Soccer Drill

  • Age Range: 4-6
  • Length of Session: 5 mins
  • Number of Players: groups of 4
  • Skills to Learn: dribbling, ball handling 
  • Equipment: 8 cones and 4 balls for each group of 4

Description: Each child will dribble their ball from one square to the next and back using a variety of different dribbling tactics defined by the coach. 

Drill Set-up:

  • Set up two squares 10 meters apart with side lengths of 5 meters. 
  • Place 4 players in one square and give each player a ball. 
Dribble Between The Squares Soccer Drill
Dribble Between The Squares Soccer Drill ○ Soccer Blade

Drill Instructions:

  1. Instruct the players to dribble to the other square and back using different techniques. 
  2. Right foot only. 
  3. Left foot only. 
  4. Inside of the feet. 
  5. Outside of the feet. 
  6. Doing a particular move every few dribbles (stepover, cut, roll and touch, etc.)

Musical Balls: Soccer Drill

  • Age Range: 4-6
  • Length of Session: 10 mins 
  • Number of Players: any
  • Skills to Learn: awareness, speed, coordination 
  • Equipment: balls and cones 
  • Description: The number of balls decreases by one each round

Drill Set-up:

  • Create a large square based on the number of players you have. 
  • Give each player a ball.
  • Optional: set up a small side activity for kids to do once they are out of musical balls. 
Musical Balls Soccer Drill Soccerblade.com
Musical Balls Soccer Drill Soccerblade.com

Drill Instructions:

  1. Give each player a ball at first. 
  2. Instruct players to dribble around the area using different techniques. 
  3. When you stop playing music or blow your whistle, each kid must leave their ball and find a new one. 
  4. Take away one ball. 
  5. Repeat the steps, this time one player won’t have a ball in the end. 
  6. The player without a ball must perform a simple action, like 5 jumping jacks, or they are out. 
  7. You can repeat the activity this way or take away one more ball each time the same way you would with musical chairs. 

Knock Out: Soccer Drill

  • Age Range: 7-10
  • Length of Session: 10-15 mins 
  • Number of Players: 10-12
  • Skills to Learn: dribbling, keeping head up, defending, decision making 
  • Equipment: cones and a ball for each player 

Description: Players all dribble around the space while trying to knock out the others’ balls. See who the last one standing is. 

Drill Set-up:

  • Create a large circle with cones. 
  • Give each player a ball inside the circle. 
  • Make multiple games if you have a large team. 
Knock Out Soccer Drill
Knock Out Soccer Drill

Drill Instructions:

  • Each player needs a ball inside the circle. 
  • Players must dribble around while trying to kick other players’ balls out of the circle. 
  • If your ball gets kicked out, you must do some small action to get back in (2 jiggles, 10 toe taps, etc).
  • When the knock-out round begins, there’s no re-entry. Players who are knocked out should work on a skill you provide while watching. 
  • As the number of players decreases, use the players who are out to block areas of the circle to shrink the space.
  • To increase difficulty, shrink the size of the circle or add specific dribbling challenges within the game. 

Passing Rondo: Soccer Drill

Drill Outline

  • Drill Name: Passing rondo
  • Session Length: 5 minutes
  • Age Group: all ages
  • Number of players: 6 to 18
  • Skills learned: Quick passing, first touch, quick feet, interceptions
  • Equipment: 1 ball (per group)

Drill Setup

  • This drill requires just 1 ball. 
  • Divide the team into groups of 6.
  • Assign 1 player per group to begin as the defender. 
  • The other players form a circle approximately 3 to 5 yards wide around the defender.
  • P1 begins the drill with the ball at their feet.
  • If you have more than 6 but less than 12 players, scale the drill to accommodate the number of players you have.
Passing Rondo
Passing Rondo

Drill Instructions

  1. P1 starts the drill by passing the ball to a teammate. 
  2. The attacking players then try to keep possession through quick passing. 
  3. Instruct attacking players to hold their general positions to maintain the circle size.
  4. D1 attempts to intercept the passes and gain possession. D1 can also press and tackle. 
  5. When D1 wins the ball, the attacking payer responsible for losing possession switches with D1.
  6. If an attacking player plays a bad pass that strays outside the circle, they must switch with D1.
  7. The process is repeated for several minutes. 

Drill Variations

  • Expand the circle size and use 2 defenders. 
  • Limit the number of touches attacking players can take. 
  • Set pass completion targets and instruct players to count consecutive passes.

Dual Station Footwork: Soccer Drill

Drill Outline

  • Drill Name: Dual Station Footwork
  • Session Length: 10 minutes
  • Age Group: all ages
  • Number of players: 1 to 18
  • Skills learned: Ball control, dribbling, quick feet, turning
  • Equipment: 4 cones (minimum), 1 ball (Cruyff station), 1 ball per player outside Cruyff station 

Drill Setup

  • This drill consists of 2 stations. 
  • Set up the Cruyff turn station by creating an inverted square, placing cones 5 yards apart. 
  • The lateral movement station is simply an open space, large enough for whatever number of players you have to work with individually. Each player requires approximately 5 yards of space. 
  • If you have 10 or more players, consider setting up multiple Cruyff turn stations. 
Dual Station Footwork
Dual Station Footwork

Drill Instructions

  1. 2 players participate in the Cruyff drill at a time (left in the image below). 
  2. P1 starts at 1 cone with a ball, while P2 starts at another cone (can’t be the opposite cone to P1).
  3. P1 and P2 start at the same time by dribbling toward their opposite cones. They must use ball control and footwork to ensure they don’t collide as they cross paths.
  4. When they reach the opposite cone, P1 and P2 do a Cruyff turn then repeat the drill from the opposite side. 
  5. All other players (right side) have a ball each and work individually in the lateral movement space. 
  6. Each player takes 2 quick, short touches to then right then stop the ball. 
  7. They then roll the ball under their foot from right to left.
  8. They then repeat the steps from the opposite side. 
  9. Rotate player roles every minute. 

Drill Variations

  • Change the type of footwork drill in the lateral movement space to focus on other skills. Keepy-uppies, stepovers, and ball drag are good alternatives for this drill.

Shuttle Drills: Soccer Drills

Drill Outline

  • Drill Name: Shuttle Drills
  • Session Length: 5 to 10 minutes
  • Age Group: all ages
  • Number of players: 1 to 18
  • Skills learned: Quick feet, lateral movement, sprinting, deceleration, change of direction
  • Equipment: 8 cones (minimum)

Drill Setup

  • This drill involves 3 stations. 
  • Set up the stations as shown in the graphic
  • Station 1: Place 2 cones 3-yards apart to indicate the starting gate. Place 2 identical cones 15 yards away to indicate the other end of the station. Place 2 cones between the start and end gates, equal distances apart (5 yards). 
  • Station 2: Create 4, 2 cone gates, 5 yards apart to create a running strip. The full length of the station is 15 yards. 
  • Station 3: Use the same cone formation as station 3. 
  • None of the drills involve a ball. 
Shuttle Drill
Shuttle Drill

Drill Instructions

  1. Each of these drills involves explosive movements. Ensure all players undergo a thorough warmup to avoid injury.
  2. Station 1: P1 sprints to the front of the first cone, then shuffles the full way around it while moving their feet as quickly as possible (continually facing forward). They then sprint to the next cone and repeat the same movement, before sprinting through the end gate. P1 then turns around and repeats the drill from the opposite side. 
  3. Station 2: This is an endurance-style drill. P1 sprints to the first gate then turn and run back to the starting point. P1 then sprints to the second gate before returning to the starting position. P1 then sprints through all the gates, pushing through passed the final cones.
  4. Station 3: P1 stands at the left cone of the first gate. To start, P1 sprints to the cone directly in front, then side steps quickly toward the cone to their right. P1 then sprints to the cone directly in front before side-stepping toward the cone to their left. To finish, P1 sprints through the final gate. 

Drill Variations

  • If you have enough players and space, you can set up all 3 at the same time. If not, adjust the cones after completing each round.
  • Station 2: Instead of turning and sprinting back to the starting point, instruct players to sprint backward. 
  • Station 3: Repeat drill starting on the opposite side.
  • Create competition by timing each player’s round. Or, divide players into groups and combine their total times. 

Fitness Course: Soccer Course

Drill Outline

  • Drill Name: Fitness Course
  • Session Length: 10 minutes
  • Age Group: all ages
  • Number of players: 1 to 18
  • Skills learned: Sprinting, quick feet, lateral movement, back peddling, conditioning
  • Equipment: 7 cones, 1 speed ladder, 5 agility poles

Drill Setup

  • Set up the drill as shown in the graphic
  • The distance between the first 2 cones should be around 10 yards.
  • The distance between the end line and the ladder should be around 15 yards. 
  • The distance between the ladder and the next cone should be 5 yards. 
  • Create a staggered formation with the agility poles.
  • All players line up behind P1 at the first cone.
Fitness Course
Fitness Course

Drill Instructions

  1. On the coach’s signal, P1 sprints to the first cone, then side-steps quickly to the cone on their right. 
  2. At the cone, P1 back peddles to the cone behind it. 
  3. P1 rounds the cone and then sprints to the ladder. 
  4. P1 sprints through the ladder, using quick feet and ensuring both feet enter each ladder square. 
  5. P1 sprints, then around the next cone, before gliding through the agility poles. 
  6. After rounding the final agility pole, P1 sprints to the finishing gate. 
  7. P1 rejoins the line.
  8. All players must complete 5 rounds. 
  9. The next player in line starts the drill when the person ahead hits the ladder section.

Drill Variations

  • Depending on fitness levels, reduce or increase the number of rounds each player must perform. 
  • Create competition by timing each player’s lap. They will have to go one at a time for accurate timekeeping. 

Soccer Blade has more than 100 drills – for more go to our soccer drills page. If you need equipment for your soccer drills, check out our soccer equipment page.

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