Friday, February 28, 2014

5 Random Footy Training Tips Part 6

First a little update from Aussie Rules Training.

Excitement Factor #1 - I'm in the midst of writing a brand new footy manual! I haven't released one in a while and I'm always learning new stuff so as of right now (it might change possibly) the idea is to have a 12 month training manual from September/October all the way through to September the next year. Programs, info galore thus it's taking a while to gather it all and have it all make sense. It will possibly replace the other manuals I have as it will basically put them all together in the single manual with some bits taken from them along with all the new stuff I have.

Excitement Factor #2 - Late last year I purchased some online training software of which I'm in also in the middle of putting my own videos into (tedious and drawn out process!). I had 200 on there already but this requires individual videos of each exercises, not groups of exercises like I had. I'm now up to 357 vids with another 40 odd on my phone needing to be uploaded and another 50+ I reckon to be filmed and also uploaded. With this software I'll be able to program for anyone anywhere in the world and it has plenty of features within it in regards to its set up and nutritional component. I hope to coincide this release with the manual but I'm spinning wheels trying to get them both done!

Anyway back to randoms...

Random Tip #26 - Getting Stronger Without Weights

It could be said that the stronger you are, the better athlete you are. It's not a perfect statement but a stronger athlete has greater capacity for power, speed and even endurance then a weaker one. Strength is the foundation of which all other strength and fitness qualities is built on.

Most clubs will not have the luxury of having a gym set up available for use by players but you can still get your players stronger at training without weights but is doing push up ladders and sets of 50m walking lunges getting you stronger or just building up fatigue and a little endurance?

Enter isometric dynamic bodyweight exercises.

ID exercise take bodyweight exercises to the next level as they require a far greater force output then traditional reps.

These can be done a few ways of which I'll cheat and use a tip # for each variation.

Random Tip #27 - Iso Dynamic Power Rep

An ID power rep is performed by going down into the bottom deep position of a squat, split squat or push up and holding for at least 3secs. At that point your objective is to push out of that position, the mechanically weakest position of the exercise until you are at the starting position. The isometric contraction (no movement) means that you must generate as much force as you can to get out of that position meaning greater. For the power rep variation do single reps focusing on holding perfect positioning when you explode out of the bottom position.

Random Tip #28 - Iso Dynamic Plyometric Power Rep

This is the same as a power reps except now you're aiming to generate even more force out of the bottom position because now you wanna try and elevate the ground with your feet or hands. Again do these in single reps. An important part of this variation is the landing mechanics which you might need to master before trying these plyometric reps. You want to make sure that you are again maintaining correct positioning through the entire rep and also upon landing where the stress should be evenly distributed through the ankles, knees and hips for lower body exercises and the wrists, elbows and shoulders for upper body movements.

#29 - Power and Plyometric Power Reps

I underlined the "s" because this is the difference. Once you mastered single reps with a reset between each one like in points # 27 and 28, then move to continuous reps of 3 - 5 per set. So for squats and squat jumps you jump up and upon landing you are to assume immediately get yourself back into the starting position (hence the need to ace landing mechanics as mentioned above somewhere) where you "stick" the landing for at least 3secs and go again.

#30 - Partner Assisted Power and Plyometric Power Reps

This is a step up from the power and plyometric power reps but can be used for both variations. This is where a partner will provide some low to moderate resistance to you while you are paused in the deep position. So you descend into your push up or squat position then your partner pushes you downwards where you are now resisting this a]downwards action by actually trying to push  or squat up. They will want to provide enough resistance so that you can't actually move and then once they release their grip, you go lie a slingshot and spring out of it. With the power required to get out of this position with the added resistance it will probably result in a plyometric power rep anyway. Again follow the single reps with a reset between each rep then move to continuous reps.

This video from Jeremy Frisch and his team down at over in the US gives you an idea of what I'm talking about at the 2:25 minute mark. Watch the whole thing they have some real good stuff you won't even knew existed before except for what I've put on this blog

Thursday, February 13, 2014

5 Random Footy Training Tips Part 5

Back with another bunch of randoms so let's get right to them!

Random Tip #20 - Partial vs Full Beep Test

I'm pretty sure we all know what the beep test is and how it's usually performed. Set up 2 cones 20m apart and make sure you make the other end before the recorded beep which gets quicker and quicker every beep. The test goes for a good 30mins if you can get to an elite level which is probably 15 or more. I think the record for AFL is 17 something.

Now like all tests this doesn't really give you any sign of how good a player you'll be but it does give an indication that endurance is a strong suit if you can hit the mid teens or thereabouts.

I have read of teams doing partial beep test from about level 8 which really makes more sense then wasting energy on the really slow bits which is ultimately recovery during a game but for this it's just pointless.

My suggestion would be to maybe initially test from the start but if you have periodic planned re-testing then each time start from a different spot each time.

Initial Test - start at level 1
1st Retest - start at level 3
2nd Retest - start at level 6
3rd Retest - start at level 9

As you progress through pre-season training you will inherently increase volume so the as you go along you'll need to manage fatigue as there's only so much good juice to go around. In the end you make this a repeat speed type test and it saves time and energy mid to late pre-season for more game specific training drills (performed before the beep testing of course!)

Random Tip #21 - Partner Sprints

What is the point of footy? Competition.

And what is the one thing that is hardest to replicate during footy training? Game specific speeds.

Chase sprints can bridge this gap a little.

Not every player will go as hard as you want them to all the time but chase sprints can rectify this. By adding a competitive element to each sprint you can ensure that training intensity is as high as it can be for those all important bragging rights of who wins and who loses.

Partner sprints can be done a variety of ways but its important that you use a whistle for each sprint start cos no one likes a cheater!

Try doing from standing start, 3 point start, standing backwards, standing sideways, lying up or down or any other position you like but don't make these more then 10m long and rest at least 60secs between each sets as they will also serve for speed development.

Random Tip #22 - Chase Sprints

A step up from partner sprints are chase sprints. These are characterised by having a player start 2 - 3m in front of the another player where the object is for the player at the front to stay ahead of the the player at the back for the duration of the sprint which again is ran over 10m or so. The player at the back probably won't catch them but again the competitive element will ensure they try their darndest to do so.

Again use a whistle start and rest about 60secs between sets.

Random Tip #23 - Acceleration Chase Sprint

For this variant the player at the front will start from a push up position while the player at the back starts from a regular standing position. The focus is on the player at the front to explode out of the low position using forceful hip extension and arm drive.

Random Tip #24 - Combo Chase Sprint

For this variant 1 player trains acceleration while the other player trains the drive and almost max velocity phase.

The player at the back will this time start about 10m back from the player in front. When the whistle goes only the player at the back goes while the player in front waits for the second whistle.

As the player at the back passes a cone 3 - 5m from his starting line then the 2nd whistle goes and the player in front now goes, again trying to accelerate as quick as he can so the player at the back can't catch him.

To make this acceleration focused start the player at the back 5 - 8m behind the player at the front and set a cone up about 3 - 5m from his starting point.

To make this max velocity focused start the player at the back further back, say about 15 - 20m and set his 2nd cone up about 7 - 10m from the player at the front.

This will focus on max velocity for the player at the back.

Random Tip #25 - Footy Specific Chase Drills

OK, so this can be done by using footy and a skill element to the drill.

For example start off with the player at the back about 5m back and place a ball about 3m in front of the player at the front. Both players go on the same whistle with the player in front needing to pick the ball up and dispose by hand or foot to a leading player up the ground while the player at the back does his best to tackle him.

Again the player in front trains acceleration as well as skills under pressure while the player at the back trains acceleration. To make this max velocity focuses just make the drill longer with as in tip #24.