Football season is here! Many months of weight training and conditioning have lead up to the competitive season.
I can’t tell you how many times I’ve heard this when I ask an athlete this question. “Did you guys lift in season?”
The answer is either a simple “no, not really,” or something like, “we did for like the first two weeks then kind of just stopped.”
There’s a lot of stigma around athletes continuing to use resistance training during competitive season(especially with football.) I want to make clear that not only should athletes continue to train in season, but it is imperative. Here we will dive into why it is so important to train in season, and how we should train.
It happens far too often. A coach see’s his team looking gassed, or “out of shape” later in the game on Friday night, and proceeds to run the team into the ground the next week at practice. Unfortunately, this became the old school accepted way to fix the problem, when in reality, it is likely to wear the team down and make the problem worse. The truth is, if your team isn’t conditioned by week one, it is probably too late to make any drastic changes. There is however, a way to keep the team fast and efficient, and that is in season weight training. Programming for in season of course must be done correctly to benefit the athlete and not wear them down. Let’s look at some effective methods and concepts to maximize your training programs.
With these concepts in mind, let’s start to create a program that meets these standards. A good template I like for In season training is 2 days per week, no more than 30 minutes. Let’s look at an example template and break it down
Working sets 3x3@75-80%
Working sets 3x3@75-80%
In this template, we have combined concepts #1 and #2, using concentric only lifts performed as fast as possible. We have made sure to target muscles of the glutes, hamstrings, lats, and back. Cool down breathing and foam rolling is a good way to bring our nervous system back to a relaxed state and kick start neuromuscular recovery.
A video is included showing the execution of the three big lifts in a concentric only, fast fashion.
NOTE** safety is always first, when performing concentric only deadlift, dropping the bar is involved. First, make sure you are using bumper(rubber) plates. Second, and most important, check your surrounding and make sure nobody is standing nearby where you are about to drop a heavy bar.
I hope this article is helpful for athletes and would love to get it shared with coaches. If you enjoyed this, share this with someone you know who coaches athletes!
In-season weight training is different from offseason weight training in that it's shorter and more intense. You need to get in the habit of lifting heavy weights as often as possible, which makes sense because you can't get stronger without lifting heavy weights. And when you're lifting heavy weights, you're building muscle mass faster than if you were lifting lighter weights all day long.
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