Changing direction

Difficulty rating ☆☆☆☆★

As an arrival activity this works because you can add players as they turn up to training. It develops a high level of skill and movement. It is good for technique and uses both feet, working on dribbling, turning, changing direction plus advanced movements of the ball.

Set up

Set up the warm-up circuit using cones arranged into three linked diamond shapes in an area of 15×5 yards. For this warm-up we’ve used eight players. You will need a ball for each player, or make sure that players pass the ball back accurately.

How to play it

Players take it in turns to run the course, turning at each cone and using both feet. Depending on the age and development of your players you may just want the warm-up to be simple ball control exercise. However, as they are dribbling you can get them to do extra skills like going in a circle around the cones; doing a feint at each cone, dropping their shoulder and turning away; or other skills like cutting the ball back behind the standing leg.


It is important that you highlight the need to use both feet to dribble. With younger players this is all you need to ask them to do as dribbling will be a good warm-up but when turning with the ball they should do it slowly at first so they understand how position of their feet affects their balance. Advanced players can try skills as they dribble but ball control is the most import aspect.

arrival activity

    1. Players take it in turns to go around the course and must concentrate on maintaining control of the ball through the circuit
    2. You can use this as a simple ball control exercise, with players dribbling around the course
    3. For advanced players you can get them to do skills like going around the cone

    4. When players reach the third set of cones the next one goes so more than one player is on the circuit at once
    5. Players join the end of the queue at the opposite end to where they started
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