How to Make a Homemade Tackling Sled

Comstock Images/Comstock/Getty Images

Tackling sleds can cost hundreds, or even thousands, of dollars. To increase power and tackling ability, football players should practice proper technique with a sled. Whether you're a coach looking for an alternative to costly manufactured sleds or a player looking to improve his skills at home, you can use a few pieces of lumber and a few tools to construct a tackling sled of your own. Recruit a few friends to help with this project.

Mark off an approximately 8-inch rectangle at the end of each beam with a pencil, and then draw a diagonal line going from left to right through the rectangle. Cut through the diagonal line with the electric saw. This will leave you with a trianglular-shaped bottom and make it easier for the sled to slide along the grass without catching.

Lay the 8-foot 4 by 4s parallel to each other. Place the two 4-foot 4 by 4s between the 8-foot beams, one at the top and the other halfway down.

Connect the beams by drilling two wooden screws at each juncture.

Stand one of the 4-foot 2 by 2s up and screw it in to the top right corner of the 6-foot 4 by 4. Measure halfway across the 6-foot beam and screw another 4-foot beam into it. Do the same at the top left corner with the remaining 4-foot beam.

Wrap five layers of foam around each of the 4-foot tall beams so they're covered completely. Wrap tape twice around between each layer. As an extra precaution, tape a square of foam to the top of the beams so they're not exposed.


Sand off the triangular ends of the sled to prevent injuries.

Replace the foam after it's become worn down from use.

If your foam is not very thick, wrap extra layers around each beam so, when force is applied, the beams can't be felt through the foam.


Use safety precautions when operating a hand saw or power drill. Wear protective eye wear and safety gloves.