T Nation

Recent Article + Soccer Training


I recently read an article in which a champion skater's workout was discussed, and his great speed was attributed to doing very high reps with strict form. I forget the name of the author, but its been posted in the past month or so.

Now I'm wondering how this type of training would contirbute to gains in speed for soccer. Would it be a good idea? bad? If good, how many times a week should I do this?

Thanks for any help/suggestions


What is the average length of a sprint in soccer?

Unlike for a skater I suspect that most sprints are between 5-20m with a few falling between 40-50 requiring above all good acceleration.

I see no need for high rep weight lifting for soccer. Concentrate on lower rep strength work, plyos and short sprints.

Most of the "endurance" required can probably best be obtained from playing the game. The endurance required is really the ability to engage in repeated short sprints rather than prolonged lower intensity runs but some working of the aerobic system by say 3-5 mile runs can be added if you feel your aerobic endurance lacking.



5 Things that piss me off, by Scott Abel.

I think you misinterpreted the article. His speed wasn't attributed to high reps with strict form, but that was offered as an example of what he was capable of. Remember the skater also competed in long-distance skating events as well.

For soccer speed you might want to check out stuff by Charlie Francis.


Thanks for the responses.

I guess I did misunderstand in the article, I thought Abel was saying that the workout regimen was one of the main things that contributed to the skater's speed/endurance.

I realize that in a game I won't be moving at a constant pace for any long period of time, so right now I'm working on running sprints (various distances) as well as suicides using cones.

I'm thinking of finding a hill to do hill sprints. Other that this, for optimum progress, I should also add plyo's and low rep/high weight movements?


I think that is pretty much correct.

The hill sprints should assist acceleration
so I would include them or some other form of resisted sprinting but obviously you need to tie in all the supplemental work with your game practice and matches and much clearly depends on the level you are playing at and your ambitions.

Your running options will then be:

Pure sprints
Resisted sprints-hills/towing etc
Assisted sprints-less popular nowadays as thought by many to "teach" faulty mechanics

Lactic acid training which you are doing.

Aerobic training- limited requirement only and probably not necessary for most if you are training and playing regularly.

For weights you may want to look at Joe de Francos 2 day template:

Max-Effort Lower Body Day

1.Max-Effort Lift (box squat or deadlift variation) �?? work up to a 1-3 rep max, rotated exercises every 2 weeks
2.Unilateral lower body movement �?? 3-4 sets with a moderate weight
3.Glute-ham raise variation 90% of the time �?? 3-4 sets

Dynamic-Effort Lower Body Day (usually 4 days after the max-effort day)

1.Jump variation �?? 6 �?? 8 sets of 1-3 jumps
2.Unilateral lower body movement (with added range of motion) �?? 3-4 sets working up to a heavy weight
3.Hip extension movement �?? 3-4 sets with moderate to heavy weight

Alwyn Cosgrove also has a useful 2 day layout:

Day 1
1. Explosive lower body -jumps etc
2. Quad dominant bilateral e.g squats
3. Horizontal pull
4. Hip dominant unilateral e.g step ups
5. Horizontal press

1. Explosive upper body-plyo push up, push press
2. Hip dominant bilateral e.e deadlifts
3. Vertical push
4. Quad dominant unilateral e.e lunge
5. Vertical pull

The above are not specific recommendations to follow blindly just examples of some well thought out programs which may assist you in formulating your own but which must be tailored to your own circumstances.