Multi-ball chaotic adaptive games

These two adaptive games give the players a chance to use evasion and passing, depending on the shape of the defence and the amount of confusion caused by the mess created! By Dan Cottrell


Two ball steal and score

  1. Put a 4 v 2 in each box, with the 4 trying to maintain possession of the ball
  2. If the ball is touched by one of the “2”, then call “steal”
  3. The stealing group joining their team mates, but must throw the stolen ball to a player in the other box
  4. Now play 6 v 4, with a point for each ball which reaches the far end without a stealer being caught in possession. Passes must be backwards

Set up

A 30m long box, 20m wide with two 7m by 5m boxes inside. Two balls. Adjust box size for more players.

How to

  • Split into two teams. With six-a-side put two players of one team in each box with four players of the other team. (Other examples: 5/2, 6/3, 7/3)
  • The group of four have a ball. They can pass and run around in the box. The other players try to intercept or knock the ball down or out.
  • If a group lose the ball or it’s stolen, they become the defenders. Shout out when this happens. The stealing team recover if it’s been knocked down, but it must be gathered by or passed to a player from the other box.
  • It now becomes 6 v 4, with two balls. The attackers can only pass backwards. If they are touched in possession, if they cannot pass the ball within one second, that ball is lost.
  • They score a point for each ball that crosses the line.


  • Allow kicking and attackers to be offside for the kick, but the kicked ball must be caught inside the box.


Dinner time

Set up

A 20m by 15m box and five balls.

How to

  • Split into a group of five attackers and three defenders (for example).
  • Start attackers on the edge of one side of the box, with a ball each. Start defenders in the middle.
  • When you say “starters”, the attackers enter the box, aiming to get to the far side.
  • If a ball carrier is touched, then they must stop running.
  • At the end of starters, the balls of the attackers who are caught are put at the side, and the rest of the attackers join the other ball carriers.
  • Repeat, this time shouting, “main course”. The attackers with a ball can pass in any direction. However, if the ball is dropped or goes to ground, you play the food rule. It must be picked up in three seconds.
  • If a ball carrier is touched stop running and can’t pass.
  • Repeat the process as above, with balls to the side. If they are any balls left at the end, then it goes to “dessert” and then the “cheese course”.


  • Allow kicking.
  • Play full contact, but a ball carrier can offload. If they are tackled to ground, then they must give up the ball.
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