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Soccer Off Season Plan


Hi,Im from Bulgaria and i am 16 years old.I training from 10 years.I make one program for me (have 40 days off season):
squats 4x7 with 60kg
pull ups with dumbbell 7,5kg 5x5
benh press with 60kg 5x5
lunges 3x8 with 2x15kg

mobility exercises
reverse crunches 3x10
evillwheel 4x8
plank 2x 1,5min.

Squats 6x5 with 65kg
single arm dumbbell row with 17,5kg
bench press 5x5 with 60kg
lunges 3x8 with 15kg

mobility exercises
side plank 3x30 on each side
and one exercise whose name i dont know

squats 8x3 with 70kg
pull ups with dummbell 7,5kg 5x5
bench press with dummbells 2x20kg
lunges 3x8 with 15kg

russian twist 4x10 with 3kg dumbbell
paloff press 3x10 on each side


I will make this squat programm
week 1 - monday-4x7with 60kg ; wednesday-6x5 with 65kg ; Friday 8x3 with 70kg
week 2 - monday-4x7 with 62,5kf ; wednesday-6x5 with 67,5kg ; Friday 8x3 with 72,5kg
week 3 - monday-4x7 with 65kg ; wednesday-6x5 with 70kg ; Friday 8x3 with 75kg
week 4 - monday 4x7 with 67,5kg ; wednesday-6x5 with 72,5kg ; Friday 8x3 with 77,5kg
every week i up with 2,5kg
Is it okay?What do you think?I want more power and strength.
Excuse me for bad english.


I think for Soccer, strength is secondary to skill. So a simple strength program, 2 or 3 days per week just focusing on big general lifts would be all you needed for strength. 5/3/1 would work well for this.

Now the bigger question is skill. What are you doing for skill work? Make sure you have built an aerobic base. Your aerobic system is where you will get most of your energy for soccer games, so make sure it is strong. You spend very little time in a match sprinting (depending on position of course). So make sure your aerobic system is well developed. Joel Jamieson put out a great book for MMA, but his techniques would apply to you in soccer. You just have to figure out how to tweak the program from MMA to the specific qualities you need in soccer.


The endurance,tehnique and speed are good my skill,but strength .. isn`t very goog and i want training this in my free one month.And the weather is very cold .. now is winter and i cant go to stadium every day and i want to training in the gym.What do you think for this program


I don't think it is the dumbest plan I have ever seen. I probably wouldn't set it up this way, though. You mention that you have 1 month off (from soccer I am assuming). How does strength training fit into soccer when you don't have a month off? What were you doing previous to this? What happens after the month off? I think we need to look at the larger picture and go from there. Talk more about what you have been doing, what you will be doing, how much you practice and participate in games, etc.


Lol what random advice. The guy didn't ask about his skill or conditioning programs...

OP Your program doesn't look too crappy, there's lots of volume but if you expect to recover from the work go for it. Overall you're real green so you have a big margin for error in your programming.


OK i will describe how i training.Before this one month i have normal trainings with my team.I training every day,saturday have match and sunday rest.Besides training with my team,i do exercises in home (reverse crunches,plank,side plank,russian twist,paloff press,woodchoppers,evilwheel).On the training we do many exercises-with ball,different games with clauses (with two touches for example),without ball(jumps over stands,different sprints,stretching,training for coordination).

This is my training from 29th July to 5th December and from 18th Januari to 1st June.From 5th-6th December to 18th Januari and from 1st June to 29th July i have rest.In the summer i go every day to stadium and training for tehnique and agility,in the winter i think to go in the gym and training for strength.
I cant say everything what i want to say :frowning: By the way do you understand all i say ?


It's not random at all. If one doesn't see how skill, conditioning, and strength work fit together, then be prepared for random and mediocre results. This kid shouldn't be lifting with the goal to set records in powerlifting. He should be lifting with the goal to be better at soccer. Skill and conditioning HAVE to be taken into account in order to plan the strength portion.


Yes, I think I understand.

Do you do any general lifting from July 29th to December 5th or January 18th to June 1st? Or is it just soccer practice and games?

In your month off, it looks like you plan to hammer at the strength, which is fine, however, if your season starts right back up on January 18th, I would still work on some skill and/or conditioning. Ideally, on January 18th you want to be stronger and still be close to game shape.

I would rewrite your plan to include some Aerobic work, since soccer has a large aerobic component. I think that 30 minutes 3 to 4 times per week at 130 to 150 BPM should be enough to maintain your aerobic system. This shouldn't negatively impact your strength training since it is low intensity.

Since you want to train your entire body 3 days a week, you could keeo the volume low and intensity high. I only write this since it is a short block (4 to 6 weeks, it looks like) and you'd like to make fairly quick progress. If you had 3 or 4 months, I'd probably do something different.

So the template could be:

Warm-up (Mobility, stretching, etc.)
Speed (sprints 10 to 15 yards, jumps (20 to 30 foot contacts), med ball throws(20 to 40)
Strength (Squats, Deadlifts, Bench Press, Pull-ups maybe 3 sets of 5)

Try and progress each workout in weight lifted.

When you get into your season, you could drop the Speed and aerobics work (since you will likely be getting that through your sport work), take the strength to a maintenance type thing or progress slower and focus on soccer.

Also, I'd suggest reading on www.charliefrancis.com. You will probably get better answers in regards to your sport and how to fit general lifting into the overall plan.

Anyways, that's what I'd probably do, given what I know about your situation.


OK, not a trainer, but... the big thing strength-wise that you need to improve for soccer is the core, the core, the core again, posterior chain and single leg lifts.

I don't see any ab work described, beyond some planks and reverse crunches. At a minimum I think you need to be doing something like the North Carolina basketball team's Medicine Ball 600 routine, everyday if you can manage it. The core will give you your balance, keep you strong on the ball and help prevent injuries. (you can google the routine and find it)

Box squats, deadlifts, cleans, snatches, lots of hamstring work, some glute bridges. I can't tell you how many soccer players end up with pulled hamstrings, lower back strains and the like, because sprinting is about activating the muscles of the posterior chain.

For me, a big help in soccer is lunges (which you are doing), but also rear foot elevated single-leg squats (Bulgarian split squats). Do them with the back foot up on a Swiss ball for balance. Soccer is so much about having strength with the leg in extended positions, apart, acting separately. So you have to mimic that in the weight room.

And this thing about soccer not being about much sprinting? Crap. If you cover 10km in a game, I guarantee you if you played properly, 6-7km of that was done in short sprints. So you need anaerobic strength. Complexes brother. Lots of them. There is a really good article on complexes here on T-Nation. Use them.

This has all been tried by me btw - 40 years old, still keeping up with the 20-somethings (although the knees are getting punished.)


You are covering 7 KM in short sprints? That is ridiculously impressive. In your example, that would mean you are sprinting 70% of the time!!

It might feel like you are sprinting that much, but trust me, you are not. The majority of your time is spent jogging and/or running. A very small percentage of your time is spent on a full out sprint. Probably between 5 and 10 percent of the time. Are these guys not playing the game properly? Of course, you won't believe me, so check this out. An actual time motion analysis of elite level premier league players. Just under 5% of their game time was spent actually sprinting. If you play a full 90 minutes, you spent 4 minutes and 30 seconds on a dead sprint.

See page 4 for the table I refer to:

I never suggested that the OP ignore the short sprints, in fact, I suggested he work on speed first on any of his lifting days. You just have to be mindful of the demands of the sport. Its not about who can cover 10 to 30 yards the fastest. It is about who can cover 10 to 30 yards the fastest over and over and over again for 90 minutes. The aerobic system is your best friend in soccer. Not only does it pay the oxygen debt, allowing for faster recovery, but it also has the potential to produce some power as well, if trained correctly.

I don't disagree with your single leg recommendation, especially the bulgarian squats. I think those are great.