Youth Soccer Strength & Conditioning, an Overview

This is the overall strategy for an upcoming youth soccer strength & conditioning program. The purpose of this program is to support the coach by supplementing soccer skill instruction and training with speed, agility, coordination, endurance, and fundamental movement workouts. The secondary purpose of the program is to show the kids that working out can be fun and rewarding while helping them become faster, stronger, and healthier.

Pic 3
Strength & conditioning can and should be fun and challenging at the same time.

The program is based on two sessions per week, each session being about 10-20 minutes in duration. There are three assessments, an initial, a mid-season, and a final. Each assessment will have three timed events, a 800m run (endurance), an agility T-test (agility/quickness), and a 40 yard sprint (speed). The purpose of these assessments is to provide indicators to measure the effectiveness of the program and to reveal areas for improvement. Each week, the focus of the sessions will alternate between agility/power, coordination/endurance, and mobility/plyometrics. Each session will follow the same general flow: low intensity dynamic warmup (jog), coordination/mobility drills (20-30meters), workout, cooldown (stretching).

DEFINITIONS & KEY CONCEPTS

Agility: The ability to change direction quickly on the playing field. Cone drills, shuttle runs, plyometrics, and games.

Power: Explosive speed, quick accelerations and decelerations, powerful shots. Plyometrics, calisthenics, and stop/start drills.

Coordination: The ability to command the body to move in a specific way, mastering balance and skill required to do a task. Drills and games.

Endurance: Sustained low to moderate intensity movement, building this will help players have gas in the tank at the end of the game. Repeat intervals, sprints/strides, hill sprints, over-distance training.

Mobility: Full range of motion in the joints. Dynamic warmups, drills, and cooldown stretching. Performed at each session.

ROUGH SCHEDULE

Week 1: (1) Initial performance assessment (400m), (2) Initial performance assessment (40m sprint & agility test)

Week 2: (1) Introduction to movements, drills, & exercises, (2) Coordination  & endurance work

Week 3: (1) Agility & power, (2) Coordination & endurance work

Week 4: (1) Mobility & plyometrics, (2) Teambuilding exercise

Week 5: (1) Mid-season assessment (400m), (2) Mid-season assessment (40m sprint & agility test)

Week 6: (1) Agility & power, (2) Coordination & endurance

Week 7: (1) Agility & power, (2) Coordination & endurance

Week 8: (1) Teambuilding exercise, (2) Agility & power

Week 9: (1) (1) Semi-final assessment (400m), (2) Semi-final assessment (40m sprint & agility test)

Week 10: (1) Agility & power, (2) Fun games

Week 11: (1) Coordination & endurance , (2) Agility & power

Week 12: (1) Final performance assessments, (2) Fun games

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