With the season wrapping up recently, it’s time to talk about offseason strength and conditioning for footballers (applicable for most contact sports). ‘Offseason’ is the period between the end of the season and preseason – generally around 2 months or so. Here’s what we focus on in offseason: Rehab injuries: The wear n tear from the season has likely resulted in muscle aches, joint pain, stiffness, plus many bumps and bruises. Rest for a week or so after the season, let your niggles settle, then follow a plan for dealing with the more serious injuries. A well-structured S&C program focused on large, compound movements as well as specific injury resilience work, will take care of most issues here. If you have something more severe, seek the help of a physio – we know a lot of good ones all over the peninsula that we can put you in touch with. Build lean tissue: Throughout the season it’s likely you’ve lost some lean tissue so it’s important to dedicate time to a ‘volume’ block, aimed at increasing muscle size. We do this because a) a bigger muscle has the POTENTIAL to be a stronger muscle b) footy is a contact sport and muscles act as ‘body armour’ during collisions c) injury resilience and d) prepare yourself for future, more intensive training periods. Focus on weaknesses: If you feel like an area of your fitness (strength, speed, aerobic capacity etc.) was a limiting factor on your performance throughout the year, then thats what you should work on. You’ve got a 2 month break before team training resumes, use it to get your weaknesses up to par while maintaining your strengths. Avoid specific exercises: Avoid exercises and activities that closely resemble the sport for at least a few weeks. The change of direction, high-speed running, body contact, and constant pounding on the legs takes a toll on the body. Don’t stress the system in the same way you’ve been doing for the last 6-10 months. Focus on general strength exercises and rehab your injuries before moving on. If you’d like more specific information for your off-season training, please don’t hesitate to reach out.