In-Season Training for Local Footy - Part 2

The current lockdown came at the end of our second in-season training block.

As you know from our previous post, we have 4 main training days - Monday to Thursday (+ 1 competition day, 1 recovery day and 1 optional ‘guns n buns’ day).

I'll go through the exact program soon but here were our main ideas throughout the last month:

1: Autoregulation

- "Periodisation is having a plan. What they don’t tell you in school is NOTHING GOES ACCORDING TO PLAN!" - Buddy Morris. No one controls what happens on a Saturday and if the program calls for a front squat and a member knows they aren’t up to front squatting, they aren’t front squatting! We will always endeavour to get a stimulus as similar as possible to the original plan.

2: Efficiency (3 x 3)

- 3 movements/exercises and 3 sets of each. Reps range from 1-4 depending on the day.

3: Simplicity

- Our athletes don’t want to learn new skills, or have to use too much brain power during this phase of training. They want to know what’s on for the day, get in, do it and get out. Look at Monday / Wednesday and then at Tuesday / Thursday. Virtually the same sessions just subtle changes (volume/variation).

4: Minimise VOLUME | Maintain (or even improve) INTENSITY

- Our days in order were, 3x4, 3x3, 3x2, 3x1. Some of our members hit life time records through the last month from this low volume approach because they felt so good. Go back to point 1 - if you feel good, go for it! I still think we can shoot for less volume as we progress through the season.

5: Do the little things

- Accessory work for commonly injured areas. Specific warm ups to target niggles. Active / movement recovery. Off leg conditioning. Sleep. Quality fuel. "Small hinges swing big doors" - Eric Cressey.

Now, here's exactly how we broke down the last few weeks:




Our Friday, Saturday and Sunday's don't really change all throughout the season. Saturday is always game day.

Sunday is usually a recovery day - 10 to 15 min cold plunge is essential. Some weeks we might do light cardio then hit a contrast of sauna and cold pool. But the most important thing is sleep, nutrition and hydration. Ideally we don't lay on the couch all day and we get some blood flow going - even if it's just walking the dog.

Friday is a vanity day where we do mostly arms.

It's not essential.


Our strength warm-up stays the same every day (Monday to Thursday)

Optional 3 minute flush out on one of the ergo's.


2x10 ab wheels and inverted rows

2x5 KB swings and glute-ham raises

This can be changed to deal with current aches or injuries. If we had someone come in complaining of low back tightness then we'd adjust the warm-up to suit that. The same is true for our accessories at the end of each session.

Staying healthy and on the park is the main goal, strength and fitness gains take a back seat to injuries.


MON & WED - basically the same day. Slight variation in the sets and reps. Accessories have changed, but if you are injured, you work on your own accessories. We reduce range on a Wednesday and load up a bit heavier. We also hit a sauna and cold pool contrast after these days.

We also encourage our athletes to hit some conditioning work here. Monday is a lighter, longer, slower effort - say 15 cal each ergo into a 250m run for 20-25 min at 60-70%. Wednesday's we up the intensity to more speed or higher intensity efforts - say 10-15 second efforts with 1-2 minutes rest or 500m efforts with double the amount of rest time.

TUES & THURS - these are upper body dominant days as we have footy training after strength work. We like to drop our deadlifts from the top to minimise the risk of soreness - particularly on Thursdays close to games.

At our skills training, we get all the explosive work in that we need to with our speed work in the warm-up. Training has built-in plyometric work so we don't focus much on this in the gym.

I hope that gives you some insight into how we prepare ourselves and our athletes for local AFL footy.

#one22 #strengthcapacityresilience #trainlikeanathlete


Recent Posts

See All