Football vs. Soccer Periodization

on jenreviews page you can see how a 12 month football training program should be structured. I wanted to use it as my 12 month soccer trainng program, but as the soccer season is going from late summer to late spring, there isn’t the big off-season like in football.
You only have around 2 months of off-season (and not 7 months) so periodization is quite different.

In the football program you can have a month of funtional strength training, followed by a month of hypertrophy training, followed by a month of maximal strength training, followed by power training … You get me.

So my question is: Can you do the same for soccer? Or is it bad, because you have different stimuli in-season and your performance could be affected? Maybe it works If each cycle isn’t a month, but a week? Or do you have to train COMPLETELY different for soccer?

Do you have any suggestions how to periodize strength training for 12 months of soccer?
A one year schedule looks like this:
Pre-Season: July
In-Season pt.1: August-December
Winter Break (2nd Pre-Season): January
In-Season pt.2: February-May
Off-Season (Transition): June

To answer your question, yes, you probably could do things that way, but it may not be the best way of doing things.

How serious are you taking your football? Amateur? Tyring to make a living from it?

I used to play lots of football, and I had great success with De Francos WS4SB programming. You really need a flexible program when training while playing sports, there will be weeks where you can train hard, and then there other weeks for example after a hard game you just need to focus on recovery.


Will your training be taken by a team coach during the season? How many sessions a week?

Do you really need to get stronger? What’s your current weight and strength levels?
The game is only so physical and passed a certain level of muscle mass and strength you start sacrificing other aspects of your performance. Just look at the weights of most premiership players, even the players you think are pretty big guys are not tipping the scales.

I don’t think a dedicated 2 months of training during the off time is going to make or break you, your main aim during this time should be to try and maintain the fitness level achieved during the season.

If you really do need to gain a bit of size and strength then that can be done during the season as long as you plan your weight sessions well to avoid damaging your game day performance. A simple upper lower split with lower day as far away from match day as possible works well.

1 Like

I got soccer training tuesdays and thursdays and a match on Sunday. I want to do strength training on Monday, Wednesday and Friday.

Is ist better to do 2 Upper Body workouts and one Lower Body workout or 3 whole body workouts?

The best plan would be to give it a go and see. I found out pretty quickly that I couldn’t tolerate much additional leg training, maybe a few sets of heavy squats and deadlift a week but a lot of the time I didn’t do any and just trained upper, training legs with high volume plus 2 training sessions and a game left them feeling constantly heavy and killed my performance.

My best advice would be to aim to be the fittest player on the pitch not the strongest. Fittest player comes out on top every time, if you can keep up a high pace and run box to box for 90 minutes you won’t have to worry about having to use your physical strength, because no one will get close enough.

1 Like