Senior Training

Our aim to training over the next 6 weeks or 20 sessions is for us to develop your mind and your body’s joints and muscles and get them communicating better then they ever have before.

We will call it:

“The rules of football functional training.”

So what are these Rules that define football functional training??

All football movement begins by loading in the opposite direction.

In order for you to jump for a ball you must squat first. In order for you to perform a throw in you must wind up first. In order for you to start a run you must first lunge down. What does this say about function…it says, “In order for you or anyone to explode you must first load.” no movement occurs unless you load first. Loading means lengthening out the muscle, which in turn lets them, know it’s time to react.

Muscles React they don’t contract.

Muscles are not very bright and they don’t think for themselves. They simply react to what ever their environment throws at them. If I tried to push you over what would you do? If I threw football at you what would you do? If I was trying to tackle you in a football game what would you do? Answer to all 3 situations would be the same. You would ask you muscles and joints to react. Defining functional training means training your muscle to instinctively react not just consciously contract.

Function is Integrated not Isolated Movement.

The actions of kicking, reaching, pushing or pulling are performed by multiple joints and muscles working together as a result of optimal communication. Training functional movements elevates the sensitivity of the body’s transmitters known as proprioceptors, which in turn allows all these joints and muscles to work faster, quicker and smoother. Working each muscle or joint individually like most weight training machines do, decreases and slows down the nervous system’s (the communication centre) sensitivity and response time.

Functional movement requires the use of multiple joints.

Pick up the ball off the floor and notice how many joints are moving. Training should emphasize the use of more than one joint moving at a time to be functional. A squat and reach will have much more impact on ones ability to reach and volley a ball or a player’s ability to run faster than a leg extension machine.

Functional movement is multi-planter.

We are not meant to move in only one direction, which is what many weight machines require us to do. Instead we have the ability to move straight ahead, go left and right and to rotate. Our training should enhance this ability and emphasize our ability to move powerfully in all directions

Function movement is a series of counter balance reactions.

Multi-plane (direction) movement results in arms and legs moving simultaneously in order to counter balance for each other. This counter balance keeps our centre of gravity over our base of support. An old bastard like me this keeps me from falling and as a footballer this allows you to jump higher and change directions quicker.

All movement in football function training is core driven.

What attaches your arms to your legs??? You’re Trunk. Therefore anytime you have arms and legs moving simultaneously you must have core or trunk muscle activation. Developing a strong trunk does not take doing a million sit-ups. Instead just start training functionally and you turn on your trunk with every single exercise.

Most football function (movement) is done on one limb at a time.

Football skills more often then not require us to function on 1 leg at a time. As a result, single limb training like single leg squats; lunges or single arm resistive movements can be a highly effective way to build football strength and coordination.

Function is reciprocal.

In running and walking during a football game arm and legs move reciprocally to help create the counter balance discussed earlier. This reciprocal movement also lengthens Trunk muscles, which we know, create loading. Most machines cannot simulate Reciprocal movement and therefore train non-reciprocal movement. Reciprocal training also requires rhythm, coordination and balance in order for the body to remain upright, avoiding falling or awkward movements that lead to injury

Question your session?

Why are you doing that exercise routine (10 min on a static bike with a dozen sets on a weights machine) is it benefiting your football? And “Is it football functional”?

Can you answer this?

During one hour of vigorous exercise, how much does the average person sweat?
A. One tablespoon
B. One cup
C. One pint
D. More than the above

That’s right – D. We are all different but there is a good chance it could be 2 pints or more. As you can see, exercise saps a lot of water from our bodies. That’s why it’s very important to drink even more water while training or playing. However, drinking water before and after playing or training is just as important.

Start paying attention to your fluid intake 2-3 hours before you are going to play or train. Drink 2-3 cups of water during that time, and then drink another cup immediately before you start exercising.

Without this extra water, your muscles will become dehydrated. Muscle movement depends on how hydrated you are, so if they are dry, they will not work as well. As a result, your workout will not be as productive as you would like it to be.

Once you start training, keep drinking water frequently. A good rule of thumb is to drink one cup every 15-20 minutes. Keep a water bottle with you. Take breaks to head to the water bottle. Do what it takes you to keep yourself hydrated.
Even when you have finished training, you need to keep replenishing your fluid levels. It’s recommended you drink another 2-3 cups within two hours after you have finished. Then drink water regularly afterwards.

The more you drink before, during, and after exercise, the more productive your training will be. Do your body a favour and replenish that quart of fluids your body is losing while you work out. Your muscles will thank you

Seven S’s for training

Usually achieved in seven days as a pro! Us we have 6 hours a week if were lucky, the other 162 hours are your responsibility!

1. Speed quickness, mobility – The ability to move quickly, with extra bursts of acceleration, stopping quickly and changing direction

2. Strength and power – Helps you jump, push off to change direction, tackle, withstand challenges

3. Stamina The ability to run for 90 minutes and get around the pitch. Running patterns will include, walking, jogging and running below three quarter pace, both backwards, sideways and forwards

4. Suppleness or flexibility for twisting and turning, push off to sprint, volleying the ball

5. Strategy for team shape and set pieces

6. Situations decision making around the field

7. Skills passing control touch heading etc.

How does it break down?

Match analysis has shown that the typical player at the top level may: Cover a total distance of 10k +!

Distances covered depend on position – midfield players cover the most distance and work at 75% of their maximum endurance capacity on average throughout a game.

They cover 11% of the total distance in some form of Sprint 5-7 Secs or less.

And cover less distance at the beginning of the second half than they do at the start of the first half.

An interesting supplementary fact is that more then 25% of goals are scored in the last 15 mins of a game.

Approximate movements sprinting, running with the ball, defensive recovery runs, quick dribbling, closing down Running at three-quarter pace – moving as a team, recovery after attacks, forward runs, supporting the ball!

Approximate movements Percentages:

Sprinting, running with the ball, defensive recovery runs, quick dribbling, closing down 10%

Running at three-quarter pace – moving as a team, recovery after attacks, forward runs, supporting the ball 20%

Jogging – keeping the shape of the team, movement prior to sprinting 35% Walking, backwards and forwards 35%

Aerobic activities for game

Running at three quarter pace or less

Jogging, skipping

Walking and half jog forwards

Walking and half jogging backwards

Jumping and pushing off

Anaerobic activities for game

Power running at speeds greater then three quarter pace

Tackling and body contact
Quick sprinting and changing direction
Jumping and pushing off