Functional Resistance Training for Soccer Athletes|
This article was generously provided by Michael Rose, MS (University of Pittsburgh) CSCS (Certified Strength & Conditioning Specialist) of New Wave Soccer Conditioning.
New Wave Soccer Conditioning (newwavesoccer.com) is an on-line, soccer specific strength & conditioning program that includes videos, graphic pictures/photos, & written instructions for drills/exercises along with program design options for those individuals interested in purchasing the program (by clicking on any 'signup' link buttons on the web site).
When implementing a resistance training program for improving soccer performance, it is vital to utilize resistance training exercises, which will best transfer from the weight room to the pitch.
While athletes in all sports initially can start the off-season using non-specific resistance training exercises to build a base development, the focus of resistance training eventually needs to be determined by the specific demands of a particular sport.
Sitting down and performing leg extensions on a machine might help build strength, but it is not functional strength. Muscles and joints work together, not in isolation. Therefore, it is important to think in terms of training the movement as opposed to just the muscle groups.
Soccer requires multi-joint muscular actions across multiple planes of movement. Therefore, it is essential to use resistance training exercises that reflects this reality. Soccer is a ground-based sport, so soccer athletes also need to use resistance training exercises that will enable them to apply force against the ground with their feet.
Ultimately, the goal should be to utilize resistance training exercises, which will best transfer to meet the demands of actual game playing movements, and enable all soccer athletes to perform at their maximal potential.
Keep in mind that while it should be a goal to become stronger and more powerful, the ultimate measure of success is determined by how resistance training will improve the overall soccer performance.
Michael Rose, MS, CSCS offers an on-line, soccer specific strength & conditioning program at www.newwavesoccer.com.
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