With the football season underway and the wet weather already closing some ovals there are many teams that have missed out on training sessions. What are your options when the wet weather forces Council to close your ground?
Get in the pool
Pool workouts can help a player run faster, jump higher; and can build strength for power in their kicks. We’re not just talking laps, targeted workouts can improve specific muscle actions and improve your game.
Speed is an important part of football and this can be improved by shallow water running. Find an area of the pool that is around waist or thigh high and sprint through for about 20 metres then turn around and sprint back. Rest for about a minute and repeat. You will feel exhausted but try and maintain your speed throughout the exercise
Vertical Jump Workout
Stand in water that is waist-high. Bend your knees at a 45-degree angle, and jump up as high as you can. When you land, immediately repeat; jump like this 15 times. Take a one-minute break and then repeat the entire drill. The resistance provided by the water will help you build strength and explosive jumping power in your legs. This can help you get higher either as a striker or defender to get that all important edge when the ball gets crossed into the box.
Kicking the ball is not just about explosive strength in your legs and hips. Much of the power behind a kicking motion comes from your abs and core muscles. Grab the underside of the starting blocks at the end of the pool (or the ladders if you’re not in anyone’s way). Pull yourself up so that your feet are off the bottom of the pool. Point your toes, then lift your legs so your body is forming the letter “L”; Hold this position for two seconds. Return to the starting position. Do this maneuver 15 times, take a one-minute break, then repeat the set.
Hit the beach
The beach is never closed, not the sandy part anyway, so head down for a training session.
There’s no reason why you can’t just train on the beach, the soft sand will assist the development of auxiliary muscles that you use in every match. Mix it up with a few soft-sand sprints for explosive power in your running game and you have yourself an effective training session.
Sand training requires less stability and energy returned during exercise, which results in a greater workload for the muscles to achieve the same output. Performing a sport-specific conditioning session on sand as opposed to grass can result in a greater physiological response, without inflicting any additional damage to next day performance.
Find an artificial pitch
There’s no reason you can’t just continue your training session and play on grass. With artificial 5, 7 and 11-aside pitches popping up all across Sydney and Australia there will soon be no need to alter your training plans.
There is no denying the benefit of 5-a-side football, Futsal has been the foundation of football in South America for decades and it gives players increased skill, speed and endurance. A 1hr 5-a-side game will leave you more exhausted than a full game of 11-a-side and you’ll have more touches on the ball to improve your ability. There are many 5-a-side football locations, you just need to be quick when booking a pitch as they fill up fast! Even better you can substitute one of your training sessions for a 5-a-side pitch and know that whatever the weather you will always have a guaranteed training session.
Council’s and private organisations are also starting to redevelop grass ovals into synthetic pitches with over 10 located across Sydney. The Council grounds are generally booked out for the season so if you don’t have one for your regular season but if not than search for one of the private operators who may be able to book you in.
Whetever the weather it’s important to continue training so choose one of the options above to keep up your strength and ability. If you have any other ideas then include them in the comments below.