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Ben Torres's picture

Performing squats with a band should be implemented in any soccer training program

The squat exercise is one of the most basic exercises that soccer players are familiar with. It can build a tremendous amount of strength and power in the lower body and improve your overall performance on the field. Incoporating a mini band, however, can add a different element to the exercise and help reduce knee injuries. The problem with performing normal squats is that it neglects the smaller muscles in your hip that prevent injuries. Many times, soccer players especially female soccer players, will perform squats with their knees coming together. This is a sign of weakness in the glute muscles and a major contributor to knee injuries. Using an inexpensive tool such as a mini band and incorporating it into your squat routine changes that entire dynamic. In addition to strengthening your quads, you are also engaging your gluteal muscles, which in turn, will help stabilize your knees and prevent injury. A more stable knee allows soccer players to aggressively change direction on the field with more speed and power.

Tips on performing squats with a miniband:

1. Always keep your feet just outside shoulder width with your toes pointing forward.

2. Place the mini band just above your knees prior to executing the exercise.

3. When performing the exercise, your goal is to maintain tension in that band throughout the entire squat.

4. Like any other squat exercises, don't let your heels come up and make sure your knees do not go way ahead of your toes.

Since this squat modification emphasizes injury prevention, you do not need to add a heavy load to the exercise. The focus should be on high volume, performing 2-3 sets of 15-20 repetitions. This can be done 3 times a week either before or after your soccer workout. See the video below for an example of how this exercise is performed.

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