For 4-year old soccer players, learning the basics of the game is a top priority. Participating in soccer drills will help the 4-year old kids acquire fundamental soccer skills and be on their way towards success in this beautiful game. Here, we have clearly described a few of the best soccer drills for 4-year olds.
Catch Me If You Can
This fun and competitive drill will teach 4-year olds how to dribble with speed.
- Using cones, create a grid measuring about 10 x 10 yards.
- Instruct two players to start on two corners of the grid diagonal to each other.
- Each of the two players should have a ball with them.
- When the coach shouts “GO”, the two players are required to dribble along the edges of the grid while attempting to catch their partner.
- When the coach shouts “STOP”, the players should immediately stop the ball.
- When the coach shouts “TURN”, the players should change their dribbling direction around the grid.
The coach may add other commands to instruct the kids to play using their right or left feet, or with different parts of the feet. The coach should instruct the young players to
- Maintain close control of the ball
- Control their body movement
- Make sharp touches and dribble with speed.
Alien Tag Soccer Drill
This is a fun game for 4-year olds. It focuses on agility, vision, and awareness. Kids are very motivated while doing this exercise since it is fun.
- Create a grid measuring about 20 x 20 yards. This grid will be called Mars.
- Give two players each a soccer ball. These players will be the aliens.
- The other players will be positioned inside the grid, and they will be the spaceships. Each of the spaceships should have a pool noodle.
- Instruct the spaceships to hold their pool noodle on one end to create the front of the spaceship. The spaceships should try and avoid the aliens who are shooting soccer balls (space rocks) at them.
- The coach should have an adequate supply of soccer balls in case the aliens lose their balls.
- If an alien manages to hit the spaceship (any part of the player)with their ball, the spaceship is required to crash to the ground.
- For the first round, the coach will allow the spaceships that were shot down to get back into the game once they have undergone minor ‘repairs’ (for instance, 5 jumping jacks).
- The coach may instruct that any spaceship that is shot down becomes an alien.
- The coach should make this drill as fun as possible for the 4-year olds. The coach can enhance the game by making crash sounds and yelling “HELP” when a ship is shot down.
- The coach should observe that the kids have their heads up and are aware of their surroundings.
- The coach should ensure that all players are moving and that the aliens dribble properly.
Clean Your Room
This exercise is a great drill for 4-year old soccer players. This game focuses on teaching the kids how to dribble under pressure while also coping with defensive pressure either as an individual or a small team.
- Create a 15 x 15 yards grid. You may adjust the area accordingly depending on factors such as size, skill level and the number of players.
- Assign one player the task of knocking every other player’s balls out of the grid (clean the room).
- Assign a ball to every player except the room cleaner.
- Instruct the players to begin by dribbling within the grid while facing no attacking pressure.
- the coach will then instruct the room cleaner to get into the grid.
- The room cleaner will then attempt to steal the balls from the other players and kick them out of the grid.
- When a dribbler’s ball is kicked out, the dribbler should retrieve their ball and try to reenter the grid as fast as they can.
- If the room cleaner manages to kick all the balls out of the grid at any one time, the room is considered clean.
- The room cleaner should shoot the ball as far away from the grid as they can so that they can have a better chance at cleaning the room.
- If one room cleaner is struggling, a second room cleaner may be sent in to assist in room cleaning.
The coach may start with two room cleaners if the other players are quite many. The coach may also require the players whose ball is kicked out of the grid to do ten jumping jacks before they reenter the grid. This will give the room cleaners an advantage.
The room cleaners should be instructed to move quickly and pressure the players as much as possible. The dribblers should show situational awareness so that they can successfully avoid the defender.
Pirate Treasure Dribbling Game
This soccer drill is specially designed to be fun and effective for young soccer players such as 4-year olds. The drill seeks to teach dribbling skills to the kids.
- Use cones to create a 30 x 30 yards grid.
- Place about 10 tall cones along one edge of the grid. The cones will be the treasure.
- Have 3 players start within the grid and they will be tasked with defending the treasure. They should have an alternate color jersey on.
- Instruct the other players to start on the opposite side of the grid, each with a ball. The players will be the pirates.
- The coach gives a signal for the pirates to start dribbling in an attempt to move past the defenders and to the treasure.
- The pirates take the treasure by knocking down the cone will their ball.
- When a pirate knocks down the cone, they are required to pick up the cone and carry it to the point from where they started while dribbling the ball.
- If a pirate loses the ball to a defender, they must move back to their original starting point and start again.
The coach may var the grid size and number of defenders depending on the skill level and number of 4-year old players.
The coach also needs to
- Guide the kids to keep the ball close.
- Train the kids to be in control of themselves and the ball.
- Instruct the players to dribble with their heads up so they can see the defenders and the treasure.
- Encourage the kids to dribble with speed.
Sharks and Minnows
This drill focuses on the ability to dribble out of pressure situations.
- Create a 20 x 25 yards grid using cones. The dimensions may be adjusted to be more suitable for the skill level and the number of participating players.
- Instruct two players to start in the middle of the grid. They will be the Sharks, and they won’t have a ball.
- The other players will start with a ball on one of the end-lines of the grid. They will be the Minnows.
- The minnows will attempt to swim (dribble) from one end-line to the other while trying to avoid being ‘eaten’ by the sharks.
- The sharks will, in turn, try to steal the minnows’ balls and knock the balls out of the grid. If a minnow’s ball is knocked out, they become a shark.
- The last minnow standing will be the winner of the competition.
The coach may instruct the kids to dribble with their left or right foot. The coach should also encourage the dribblers to remain in control and not panic when the sharks approach them. The players should be instructed to keep the ball close while dribbling.
The Numbers Game
This drill involves a 1v1 situational play between 4-year old players. The drill works on multiple soccer skills including dribbling, shooting and beating an opponent.
- Create a 15 x 20 yards filed and place two small goals on each end-line.
- Split the players into two even groups. Each player from each team should be assigned a number such that there will be one player from each team with similar numbers.
- One of the teams should be in an alternate jersey.
- The coach starts the exercise by playing a ball into the field and the calling out a number.
- The players assigned to the number that the coach has called will sprint onto the pitch and play a 1v1.
- The game will continue until one of the players scores a goal, or the ball leaves the designated field.
- The coach may have multiple 1v1 competitions going on simultaneously. The coach may call out multiple numbers thereby creating contests such as 2v2 and 3v3.
- The 4-year old players should be encouraged to take on their opponents and shoot when they get any on-goal chances.
It is crucial for coaches to consider the skill set and the number of participating players so they can set up these drills appropriately.
It is also important that these drills be made as fun as possible so that the 4-year old kids can exhibit self-drive and motivation which will enhance their learning process.