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Soccer Training

90STRONG soccer training provides you the latest information you need to improve your soccer fitness, speed, agility, and strength. Get great tips on running drills, soccer exercises, as well as nutrition to help you succeed on the field.


Hit the Pool for Interval Training

If you have access to a pool- then jump in and get moving! This video series of pool training provides a great alternative to dry land training. If you've been training on turf or running on pavement and your body is sore, then get into the water and decompress your body. The great thing about the water is the amount of resistance. The more you push against the water the greater the resistance. The first video shows a pair of water running shoes. The second video demonstrates 2 types of interval runs in the pool you can do for time or repetition.

Adding Running to Practice and Drills

One of the biggest drawbacks, I have noticed watching youth soccer practice is that amount of standing around that occurs. One method to limit this is designing conditioning that supplements what is going on in practice.

Using circle ball drills for core stability and strengthening adductors

This is a great exercise for engaging the low abdominal muscles and the adductors at the same time.

Study Finds an Increase in VO2max Using a 10 Week Ball Dribbling Soccer Training Interval

A study published in the British Journal of Sports Medicine in 2005 followed 16 professional youth soccer players.  Two times a week after training sessions an aerobic interval training session took place.  Four bouts of 4 minutes work periods at 90-95% of each players maximal heart rate followed by 3 minutes of jogging at 70% of each players maximal heart rate for 10 weeks during pre-season (6 weeks) and the competitive season (4 weeks).  All players wore heart rate monitors for their individualized needs. 

Dynamic Warm-Up Progression

Start your training session and game right with a dynamic warm-up where you hold the position and stretch for about 2 seconds.  The focus shifted from static stretching, holding a position for 15-30 seconds, to a dynamic full body activity several years ago.  Static stretching is reserved for the end of training or games when you need to hold the position for an amount of time to relax the muscles.  Since sport involves full body dynamic moves a good warm-up is essential to preparing for these demands.

Bike Programs to Improve Acceleration and Fitness

Soccer taxes both the aerobic and anaerobic systems during a game. Training on a bike either during the off-season or after recovering from an injury can help improve these capacities while reducing the impact on the joints. I suggest the following bike programs to improve your acceleration as wel as overall fitness level.

Linear Running Programs to Improve Speed and Performance

Soccer is a game of short sprints and long runs that tax both the aerobic and anaerobic systems. The best players have the ability to run long distances throughout a match to position themselves and then have the capacity to sprint a short distance to get to a space and make a play quickly. Many of the programs I see focus on long sprints of 100 meters and fail to train for short distances. The following two programs will improve both energy systems, allow you to reduce fatigue and still sprint quickly to make the game changing play.

Tight Cone Dribbling series

This drill is excellent for building a good soccer foundation and for building one’s touch in a tight space. This is also an excellent drive for recovery from an injury as it involves making a lot of small cuts. This will build the healed tissues tolerance to the stresses of soccer.  

Defensive Juggling

This is an excellent drill as defenders are often found trying to volley or clear a bouncing ball during the game. This drill is used to improve balance, foot-eye coordination, as well as hamstring flexibility. In my career, I have seen many defenders injure their hamstrings while attempting to clear a bouncing ball. And I frequently use this drill as a great way for my athletes to adapt to the stresses of soccer.

Diagonal Shuffle, Kick, Turn and Sprint

The following drill is designed to simulate a game situation in a controlled manner. The athlete should concentrate on proper form as well as accelerating, decelerating and accelerating again with power.