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Off Season Training - Phase 3 - Intensity Building

This article discusses the 3rd of the 3 Off season phases, Intensity building.  

Typically, eight weeks are required for a soccer player to gain peak fitness.Due to NCAA regulations, most colleges get 3 weeks of pre-season.High schools vary from state to state. Coaches tend to fit as much fitness and technical training as possible into this period often resulting in over-training and higher injury rates. A player heading into camp at a strong fitness level will see increased performance and lower risk of injury. Because of this, the build-up phase is extremely important.The timing of this is dependent on the athlete’s current condition, level of play, and length of anticipated pre-season.Following the example of a college player with a three week pre-season, this build up phase with be in the 5 week range provided they did a quality job of maintaining or increasing fitness and strength during the off season.Fitness should be a combination of distance runs and interval training with a greater focus on interval running as pre-season approaches.Time should be devoted to cutting and footwork drills to get the body used to the volume of cuts that occurs during games and practices, often reported in the 700-900 cuts per session range.

Weight room focus can continue to be power and strength.   Some alterations may be made to account for the increase in sprinting activity.

Soccer training will increase in frequency and must be balanced with weight room and conditioning activities.  

Here is an example of an 8 week fitness programs

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