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Strength Training for Football

Strength training is important for all athletes, across all sport disciplines, not only to improve performance but also to avoid injury. Football players, due to the demands that their game puts on their bodies, are no exception. In this blog article, Adam, one of our personal trainers and sports therapy specialist, talks about the strength training for footballers and exercises you can try if you want to improve your football skills.

So, over to Adam :

“When it comes to football, a few of the main physical components to focus on in training are:
Physical strength, muscular endurance, stamina, power, speed, and explosiveness.

 

  • Physical strength will allow you to be strong on and off the ball, help with ball retention, and also
    with winning the ball back. Having a strong & the conditioned body will also help reduce the risk of injury.
  • Muscular endurance allows you to be explosive throughout the duration of the match whilst reducing the speed of muscular fatigue.
  • Stamina is crucial for training and matches as it allows you to continue performing at the best of your abilities.
  • Speed is a beneficial trait to have as a player as it allows you to get an advantage on your opposition as you will be able to get to balls quicker, dribble past players, and/or intercept passes.
  • Explosiveness is important as it can aid your acceleration, jumping, and change of direction throughout the game. This is extremely important for defenders and goalkeepers.

 

Below are a few exercises that you can incorporate into your training sessions to help develop your
muscular strength, muscular endurance, explosiveness, and core stability.

1. Runners lunges

Purpose of the exercise = This exercise allows you to develop your balance/core stability, strength
and muscular endurance, unilaterally (one side at a time).

Training points = Hinge at your hip, bend at your knee (in a lunging motion), keep your chest up
and face forwards at all times and drive that knee forwards and up.
Repeat this exercise 4 times on each leg for 8 – 12 reps

 

 

2. Crab walks/side steps

Purpose of the exercise = This exercise will primarily develop your muscular strength and
endurance of your lower body muscles but will also help develop core strength and stability.
Resistance band placement = If you have the band around your ankles, you will find this exercise
more challenging than if you are to place the bands just above your knees.

Training points = Put yourself in a slightly squatted position (the lower you go, the harder it will become), keep your chest up and facing forwards, knees, and feet facing forwards and take a large,
controlled step to your side. Do not let your knees fall inwards.
Repeat this exercise 4 times, taking 3 – 5 steps one way before going back on yourself.
Work for 30 to 45 seconds

 

 

 

3. Medicine ball press-ups

Purpose of the exercise = This exercise is great to develop your upper body strength and the use of
the medicine ball simply adds a new variation to the exercise making it a little bit more challenging.
Standard press-ups can be done instead, however, you should try to build up to new variations.

Training points = Squeeze your core and your glutes to help ensure you start and remain in a strong,
solid, flat body position. You do not want your back to be arching or your hips too high. The wider
the stance you take with your legs, the more stability you will have.
Repeat this exercise 4 times and perform either 10 – 12 reps or work for 30 – 45 seconds

 

 

4. Jumping squats

Purpose of the exercise = This exercise is great for developing muscular strength, muscular
endurance, and explosive strength. All three of these components will really help you with
jumping/jump height, sprinting and acceleration, and also overall stamina within a game.

Training points = Ensure you have a soft and controlled landing, then push off as hard as you can in
every jump keeping your chest up at all times.
Repeat this exercise 4 times and perform either 10 – 12 reps or work for 30 – 45 seconds

 

 

5. Skater jumps

Purpose of the exercise = This is another great exercise to develop muscular strength, endurance,
core stability, balance, and explosive strength. Incorporating this exercise into your workout plan
will help you on the pitch as it helps improve your jumping for the ball, any quick change of
direction, and your acceleration when sprinting.

Training points = Aim to take as big of a jump as possible, however, make sure you are within your
comfort zone as it is important to land in a safe and controlled manner every time. Keep your chest
up at all times and land softly by going into a controlled single leg lunge position on landing.
Repeat this exercise 4 times and perform either.”

 

If you play football, at any level, and are looking for something to give you that extra edge, then these strength and conditioning exercises could be just what you need.

Contact us now for a free consultation and see how we can improve your game

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