Soccer Dribbling Tips

It’s important to learn how to dribble properly. While the other page on The Complete Soccer Guide focuses on technique, this page provides general dribbling tips.

These tips will help you improve your dribbling ability. Make sure to apply them the next time you’re on the pitch.

Here’s 12 soccer dribbling tips:

Use your weak foot.

Though using your weak foot is frustrating, it is vital to your dribbling ability.  Using both feet will allow you to easily go in all directions and execute all moves.  Also, switching feet can help make a defender lose balance.

When defenders get more advanced, they defend your strong side more.  If you cannot use your weak foot to beat defenders, you will have a very tough time getting past them.

Use all the surfaces of your foot.

This will allow you to use more soccer moves and dribble in all directions.  Using all the parts of the foot, you can dribble gracefully.


Don’t be afraid to use your body; shielding effectively can really help you keep the ball.  The best dribblers integrate shielding with dribbling.  Learn how to shield.

Don’t stare at the ball.

You need to be constantly looking up, or you will not be able to pass, shoot, or do anything else.  This takes practice, but it will make you a much better player in every way.

Balance yourself.

You need to be on the balls of your feet, ready to cut in any direction.  Balance is a huge part of dribbling; in fact, the entire point of doing moves is to throw a defender off balance.

Learn soccer moves.

Having a variety of soccer moves will allow you to get past defenders in all kinds of situations.

Put the right amount of touch on the ball.

If there is open space you can touch the ball forward more, and in a tight space, keep the ball close to you.  Make sure you master your touch.

Remember, you can run faster when you don’t have the ball.

While it is important to learn how to run almost as fast as you would without a ball at your feet, you still can’t be as fast as you are without it.  Passing allow you to get rid of the ball, and make runs.

Dribble with a purpose

Dribble when you have open space, are making room for a shot, making room for a pass, or are trying to get in a cross.  Don’t just dribble to dribble.

Move your body.

It’s the little things that fake a defender out.  Maybe leaning left before cutting right will give you the advantage you need to get past a defender.  Move your arms too, defenders are often distracted by arms.

Always keep a ball with you.

If you are wondering how players like Messi have perfect control, this is how.  Wherever Messi went his soccer ball went with him.  This is true for almost all professional soccer players.  Bring a ball wherever you can, and practice your dribbling.

Practice at different paces.

Try starting slow and rapidly changing to a sprint.  You will change speed often in games so this is a useful thing to practice.