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What Do Ladder Drills Improve In Soccer?

What Do Ladder Drills Improve In Soccer?

For a soccer player to perform exceedingly well in this demanding sport, all the muscle groups in the player’s body must attain a high level of fitness through the consistent practice of different soccer drills and exercises.

When engaging in a fast-paced sport like soccer, players must be focused, agile, and coordinated throughout a match. These characteristics are not just developed overnight, they require consistent practice to perfect.

Soccer players need to always be in full control of balls so that they can easily make accurate passes and take precise shots when necessary. It takes more than just mere talent to attain a high level of ball control in soccer. Players must train consistently.

Development doesn’t happen by chance in soccer. Players seeking improvement must undergo numerous training, drills, and exercises to master numerous skills and techniques.

Ladder drills are among the most effective kinds of drills for improving soccer players’ agility, footwork, and speed.

Agility ladders have been in existence for a long while but their reputation hasn’t dropped. In fact, more soccer players today are practicing ladder drills compared to what they used to be in the past.

Although agility ladders usually appear simple and portable, they offer lots of benefits to those who know how to use them.

If you have been wondering how this simple training equipment improves the life of soccer players, you need not question it any longer. We will discuss all the benefits of ladder drills and what they improve in soccer.

Young soccer player are practicing with the ladder

What do ladder drills improve in soccer?

The overall performance of soccer players mostly depends on the different training, drills, or exercises they usually engage in. There are numerous training activities performed by soccer players to improve their performance levels, ladder drills are among the most effective of them all.

Ladder drills are known to improve a player’s foot quickness, ball control, agility, and a host of other skills and abilities on the pitch. Players need great speed during sprints on the pitch, they also need a high level of coordination to easily switch directions or get into position.

These drills are suitable for soccer players because they are easy to integrate into their training regimen. Most soccer players often use agility ladders for fast-paced drills which helps in improving their average speed and response time.

Drills done with agility ladders are also very good for cardio and can be easily incorporated into high-intensive training. Below are some of the benefits of ladder drills and what they improve in soccer

Young soccer player is practicing with ladder


The level of coordination that exists between the various body parts of soccer players is among the determining factors of their performance on the pitch. A player with great body coordination is more likely to perform better than a player with less body coordination—especially when attempting a dribble.

Coordination is the foundation upon which many essential soccer skills are built. Therefore, it is one of the most important skills every soccer player should endeavor to possess as it is the backbone of most skills.

It cuts across skills like dribbling, agility, heading the ball, giving accurate passes, and a host of others. While playing soccer, players are expected to utilize every part of their body. However, the ability to achieve this effectively all depends on good body coordination.

For example, when a player is dribbling an opponent in a constant motion, their eyes usually go back and forth and also manage to remain focused on the ball. These simultaneous and synchronous movements are all made possible by good coordination.

Ladder drills generally help improve a player’s overall body coordination because most ladder drills target the entire body. With this training approach, players can learn and master how to have full control of the ball and also improve on their decision-making while on the pitch.

Young soccer player in the game


Agility is essential in soccer as it determines how quickly players can change direction without veering off balance. A player with good agility finds it easier to keep the ball in control while switching directions on the field.

Every soccer player needs to be agile to endure the challenging 90 minutes of soccer. Having great agility keeps the defense uncomfortable and agitated, they will find it more difficult to predict your next move.

It is not just outfield players alone that need to be agile on the pitch. Goalkeepers need to be agile to adequately stop balls from crossing the goal line.

Even soccer referees need to be agile due to the nature of the job they are doing. Without agility, referees will encounter many difficulties on the pitch.

Forwards are usually fast and switch pace and positions with ease. It takes an agile defender to track their every move without losing balance.

Below are some popular agility ladder drills that can help in improving players’ agility and overall speed. We will also tell you the specific skills that each of the different ladder drills improves.

One of the listed agility ladder drills is even combined with training cones for maximum result.

Young soccer players are fight for the ball on the field


Footwork is generally how players move their feet while on the pitch. It is an essential aspect of playing soccer that should not be neglected.

Having fast feet while on the field is an added advantage because it enables you to block passes, sprint faster, quickly switch directions, and tackle properly which creates a huge impact on your team’s performance.

Ladder drills are one-way players can improve their footwork as it is a highly rated skill in soccer. Some of the ladder drills that can be performed to improve footwork are described below.


To succeed in soccer, you need a high dose of endurance. As you must have noticed already, soccer involves a lot of repetitive actions and a lot of short sprints and long runs.

Soccer players must try to maintain their speed, coordination, and focus throughout the entire game. All this can only be possible if you have good endurance.

Endurance simply means the ability to push your body through the pain until the final whistle. It is not surprising that soccer players often lie on the field for sometime to catch their breath when the final whistle is blown.

In addition to improving other areas of the soccer player, ladder drills also improve endurance. Like the game itself, ladder drills are often repetitive and done at various intensities that prepares your body to take a similar beating on the field.

Yes4All Speed Agility Ladder Training Equipment for Soccer, Sports, Footwork & Fitness Feet Exercise - Included Carry Bag
  • BUILDING UP SPEED FOR ANY SPORT: Agility ladder and hurdles are great for a variety of sports,...
  • BOOST FOOTWORK FOR VARIOUS TRAINING LEVEL: Exercise ladder is designed with 8, 12, and 20 rungs;...
  • DURABLE FOR LONG TERM USE: Fitness agility ladder features a durable nylon construction and sturdy...

Last update on 2023-11-11 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Soccer players run on the soccer field


Ladder drills are effectively used by soccer players to improve their agility, footwork, and overall performance on the pitch. It takes constant practice, regular training, and exercises to learn and master most soccer techniques.

Ladder drills are suitable for soccer players because they increase stamina, speed, and muscle strength. Also, the equipment needed for these drills is very portable and easy to get.

We strongly recommend that you add ladder drills to your training routine if you haven’t already because there is so much to gain by doing so.