The physical preparation for preseason football training is the key phase of a season, without which it is impossible to get results. Moreover, to those who are reluctant to prepare physically, I always remember this example: when you play your first friendly game against a team that has an extra week of preparation, the last twenty minutes are long, it’s not a coincidence! Here is the interest of this football program.
Basic tips for a good pre season football training
- It is important that there is a maintenance during the off-phase, this maintenance consists in performing sports such as running, cycling, tennis, squash, badminton, beach soccer… Sports on a reduced surface are very interesting because they make the VO2max work with a succession of accelerations! See our article on what to do during the summer break.
- Always during the off phase, it is quite possible to meet you the 2 weeks before the official resumption to go running quietly between you. See our article on exercises 2 weeks before the start of the season.
- The preparation is done with equipment:
- running shoes which is different from a pair of tennis shoes (on the internet, you can find good ones around 60-75€ which will last 2 or 3 seasons). This point is too often forgotten even though it causes injury (tendonitis, joint problems, etc.).
- 1 bottle of water of at least 1L per person. This avoids bottle mixtures and therefore potential microbes.
- technical running t-shirt. This kind of t-shirt is ideal in contrast to the cotton t-shirt that absorbs perspiration. Ask a person who runs around you, he necessarily has a technical t-shirt because it is mandatory!
- During the 1st session, do the Vameval Test which consists in obtaining the VO2max of your players and then making groups of levels! This is the basis for an optimized or even simply successful physical work.
- On this same 1st session, make an inventory test to see those who have worked, those who have done nothing and above all, it will be the basis of work and the basis for progress.
- Drink as regularly as possible and drink 3 sips by 3 and not 1/2 bottle at once that will bother you at the gastric level.
Football restart program: what should I do?
Any physical preparation, whether for team or individual sports (marathon, triathlon…) is always divided into work units, i.e. we will work on the fundamental endurance unit then a Vo2max work unit… We very regularly find disconnected physical preparations with 1 long run (45′, 1 hour at low speed for example) then an explosive session the next session (15”/15”). There is no logic, no benefit for the athlete except to increase the risk of injury. This is also the case during your specific football work which is per training block. A football takeover program is anything but random, not ready, it deserves a real reflection or the help that only professionals can provide you. In addition, pre-season football physical preparation is too often the cause of injuries, so be careful.
First two weeks of football
In concrete terms, we recommend that the first 2 weeks be structured around stamina, the main sessions being exclusively on this theme in the 1st week and then tend, during the 2nd week, to include a little speed work over long distances (1000m or even 2000m). Your football activities must take this into account, i.e. not offer mini-games that will make the Vo2max work too much and would not be in adequacy with the body’s needs at the good time. Focus on endurance exercises such as passing all over the field, aerated games….
What about the first friendly game?
There are many different arguments on the date of the 1st friendly match, our recommendation being to wait until the end of the 2nd week to make one. This period corresponds to the end of the specific endurance work, you will normally have started working on the VMA over slightly longer distances so you can offer a friendly match effort. Your players will not be ready for it because they will not have yet worked the short efforts except on your training games via small games. It is not serious, on the contrary, it allows to start phase 2 which consists in the specific work of Vo2max! It is important to include post-match recovery after each friendly game!
The following weeks
After this 2-week endurance-oriented units, it is time for your players to work on the Vo2max. It does not consist in making diagonals, a number that depends on whether they have been generous or not, but on scientific validations that have shown that it takes an effective work of 8′ to be efficient. If we take the example of 30”/30”, 8” of effective work is like 16 accelerations, not 14 or 18! Reducing this number does not make it possible to work efficiently (it is the last series that are used) but on the other hand, increasing this number could generate injuries or even create a kind of overtraining.
It is also relevant, at the end of the 3rd week or at the beginning of the 4th week, to do a running outing (45′) with a fartlek work, i. e. work on the VO2max during the sprint. To do this, the player runs 45′ at 11.5km/h (example) then on 8 x 30”/30”, he climbs to 13.5km/h during the 30” acceleration to come back during the 30” rest at his speed (11.5km/h).
Make groups of levels! These levels are not randomly determined, there are tests to calculate the Vo2max such as the Vameval. With this base, your level groups are easy to do and will allow you to make each player work efficiently.
During endurance exercises, on the same principle, create a course (with for example Openrunner) around the 3km stadium (example) and with the VO2max indicators, each group will have its passage time! Some players get together with their friends but don’t work hard enough and their preparation is therefore truncated!
Our contribution on your pre season football training
Our team offers you to manage all your physical preparation for your group. We provide you with concrete exercises on physical work (you manage the football part) taking into account work blocks and scientific studies !
The Prepa Physique Team