After a summer spent soaking up the sun you could be forgiven for turning up to training looking like the wrong Ronaldo. But with the new season around the corner it’s time to swap ice cream cones for cone drills and fine-tune your footballing engine. Your touch might still be there (you never lose that do you, champ?) but no amount of skill is going to get you through 90minutes of box-to-box beastings and Sunday League slide tackles.
We’ve teamed up with qualified coach and personal trainer Mark Williams to put together a series of grueling circuits tailored to your position and designed to give you match day sharpness just in time for kick off. After completing the first circuit, give yourself a half-time team talk (orange segments optional) before taking on the second set of drills that best suit your position in the starting XI.
– Place a football in the the goalmouth and walk to the bottom left corner of the box.
– Sprint to the top left of the box, do 20 walking lunges and 20 side lunges (10 each leg).
– Sprint to the top right of the box, do 20 press-ups and 20 deltoid press-ups.
– Sprint to the bottom right of the box and do 30 squat jumps.
– Sprint back to the start position, do 30secs side plank and 30secs shoulder tap plank.
– Jump up and walk to the centre of the goal and collect the ball.
– Shuttle Sprint while dribbling the ball to the 6, 12 and 18-yard lines.
– Cross the goal line and rest for 3mins. Repeat twice.
Whether you model yourself on the marauding David Luiz or prefer the John Smith’s ‘ave it’ technique, the common denominator of any defensive rock is strength in the air. Boost your ability to command the box with this heading drill.
– Start at the goal line and sprint to the 6-yard line.
– Do 20 squat jumps mimicking a header at the top. Backpedal to the goal line.
– Sprint to the 12-yard line, do 15 squat jump headers. Backpedal to the goal line.
– Sprint to the18-yard line, do 10 squat jump headers. Backpedal to the goal line.
– Rest 2mins. Repeat 8 times.
Snuffing out attacks and threading through balls means dominating the middle of the park. The only way to do that is by being the fittest man of the pitch. It’s not going to be easy but this drill gives the head start you need.
– Start on the penalty spot. Run at 75% speed until you reach the opposite spot.
– Drop and do 20 press-ups, jump up and do 20 deep squats.
– Sprint to the halfway line, do 20 squats jumps. Jog back to the start point.
– Rest 2mins. Repeat six times.
Going head to head with a bruising centre back can make for a long afternoon. Save your shins and make 50/50 balls a certainty by adding raw speed and acceleration to your locker with this drill.
– Place a ball on the edge of the box, walk to the penalty spot and face away from the goal.
– Spin away and sprint to left post, drop and do 10 press-ups, get up and sprint to the spot.
– Spin away and sprint to right post, drop and do 12 burpees, get up and sprint to the ball.
– Drag it back, shoot into the top corner (naturally) and do 8 squat jumps.
– Rest 2mins. Repeat eight times.