When considering training strategies for developing programs for your team, it is important to remember that the body responds specifically to the energy system that is utilized. While there is some overlap in adaptations, the basic rule of thumb is that the energy system utilized will be the one that is affected by the training.
In general, there are 4 energy systems that the body uses for energy. Rather than going into technical details, we can describe them in terms of duration and intensity.
- Energy System 1 - Very High Intensity, Very Short Duration (less than a few seconds)
- Energy System 2 - Very High Intensity, Short Duration (5-30 seconds)
- Energy System 3 - High Intensity, Moderate Duration (30 seconds - 2 minutes)
- Energy System 4 - Moderate/High Intensity, Long Duration (longer than 2 minutes)
A simple analysis of the demands of your sport can help you decide which energy systems are used the most. In soccer, all 4 are used, but Energy Systems 1 and 2 get the most use as the...
All coaches know that players that are prepared for preseason prior to arrival are better equipped for training loads. For that reason, fitness coaches often provide fitness programs for players to complete on their own during the off season.
Of course, no plan is worth anything if not completed so there needs to be understanding between coaches and players that compliance is important.
With the Afghanistan's Women's National Team, we are in the unique situation where players are spread all over the world (literally) and are either currently playing or are between season with their club teams. We have training camps set in the US and Hong Kong in late August and early September. We need our players to report to camp fit so we can focus on soccer and not on building adequate fitness.
Attached is the plan provided for the players. We have sporadic testing of 1 mile time to assess maximal aerobic speed. All communication is completed via email, WhatsApp and First Touch. The Fit For 90 group...
Recently, I met with Randy Waldrum, Head Coach of the Houston Dash, to discuss planning for preseason training. Our preseason begins March 14, with our first league match in April 16. This gives us about 5 weeks of formal preseason training, including a week long trip to Portland and two scrimmages against college teams. As we met and stated to plan, I came up with 5 things that we considered when developing our plan.
1. Duration of training camp
The duration of the training camp in days and weeks gives you an idea of how much training your team will be able to complete. Most teams have 3-4 weeks of preseason preparation. It is important to periodize the training loads, but at the same time ensure that tactical topics are covered. Mapping out the preseason training schedule by day on a spreadsheet helps to visualize the preparation time available.
2. Spacing of friendlies
It is definitely appropriate to have training matches during the preseason, both to assess the team’s progress an...
At the most recent NSCAA Convention in Baltimore, I had the opportunity to moderate roundtable discussions with Avram Grant, Stuart Pearce, and Michael O'Neill, all accomplished coaches at the club and international levels. While there were many interesting stories and experiences shared, there was one by Stuart Pearce from his career that stands out as something for coaches of all levels to contemplate.
Stuart told the audience of an incident early in his playing career when he was first selected to the England National team. I am writing from memory so I may not have every word recorded perfectly, but you will get the idea.
When Stuart got his first call up to the National Team, he was filled with doubt. He knew he was a good player, but he was not sure if he was of the level necessary to represent his country.
At the time, he was playing for Nottingham Forest, who was coached by Brian Clough. Stuart told the attendees of the time that he had gotten a call to report to Coach Clough's...