Coaching a goalkeeper to dive correctly – the basics

Technique is just about the most important thing a young goalkeeper can be taught. A young goalkeeper might be agile and have quick reactions but if they hurt themselves when they dive I can guarantee they won’t be doing it very often. Use the following tips and soccer drills to show them how to do it safely.

It’s no good thinking that your goalie has good positional sense and is strong so you don’t need to coach them in diving to save a ball. One bad dive and not only is their mom shouting at you, your goalkeeper is crying and never wants to play in goal again. You’re creating problems for yourself.

Teach them now and watch them grow in confidence and save more goals in the process. It’s got to be the biggest win-win situation in soccer coaching. The more you give to your goalkeeper, the more your team gets back and the less of a headache on match day for you.

Soccer drill set up

  • The goalkeeper stands between two balls.
  • Each ball should be slightly in front of the line of the goalkeeper’s feet.
  • Get your goalkeeper to stand in the “ready” position.
  • On your command of “LEFT” or “RIGHT” the goalkeeper dives into the ball.
  • Encourage them to dive diagonally forward into the line of ball – ATTACK THE BALL!
  • Encourage the goalkeeper to use both hands to scoop the ball into the body.
  • Get them to pull the knees around in front of the body to complete the save.

Soccer drill to get goalkeepers practising diving saves without injury

Develop the drill

The coach or goalkeeper partner can roll the ball to the side of the goalkeeper and they repeat the above drill with the moving ball.

Click here for more soccer coaching tips to help goalkeepers with diving saves.

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