Sports Performance

World Cup Soccer Match Preparation and Training

Posted June 14, 2018

Futbol, also known as soccer, is widely recognized as one of the most physically demanding sports. Preparing these athletes for one of the world’s largest stages takes a lot of carefully planned training that coincides with the team’s match and practice schedule. It’s typical for midfielders to run seven to eight miles throughout the length of a match, and referees have been known to clock in at six to eight miles per match. For this reason, many teams are using GPS monitoring to track a player’s mileage and movements throughout practices and matches so that training can be customized to what a player specifically needs to stay fresh and at their best.

Weight room training starts with basic movement patterns such as a squat, hip hinge, or lunge and then progresses to more advanced movements when necessary. Pictured: Ricardo Clark of the Houston Dynamo working out at our South Houston training center.

A strength and conditioning coach will carefully plan out the team’s training intensities and volume throughout the season so the team does not get overworked, which can lead to poor play and injury, or underworked, stalling progress. Weight room training starts with basic movement patterns such as a squat, hip hinge, or lunge and then progresses to more advanced movements when necessary. With resistance training, a big emphasis is placed on high intensity training that will match the anaerobic demands of the sport. Unilateral movements and dynamic stability are used to mimic running patterns and keep the ankle, knee and hip joints healthy. Eccentric overloading and multi directional movements are used to mimic the nature of play that involves cutting, deceleration, rotational and lateral agility. And finally, as with any good program, appropriate variability of exercise selection and intensity to continue progress and peaking at different stages of the season. Using the weight room efficiently will prepare athlete’s bodies to withstand the extreme demands of playing professional sports under the brightest lights.

Speed, agility and conditioning training sessions follow a similar approach with an emphasis on running and cutting techniques that progressively get more complex when appropriate. Conditioning is determined by a player’s training load throughout practice, the more milage he puts in during drills, the less he needs to run after practice. This GPS technology has become extremely popular across all professional sports and used by teams in the Champions League, NFL, NBA, MLS, NCAA, and many more. These tracking devices are being credited for lower soft tissue injury rates and higher levels of performance by its users. When a World Cup is on the line, a team needs every advantage it can possibly take.

Conditioning is determined by a player’s training load throughout practice, the more milage he puts in during drills, the less he needs to run after practice.

There is a ton of effort put in by the coaching staff, sports performance staff, athletic training staff and others behind the scenes to keep these athletes at their best. Winning a World Cup requires keeping a full team of players at their highest level of play for a very intense month. Communication among these staffs is vital to keeping performance high, injuries low and winning a World Cup possible. A positive team environment is not exclusive to the players on the field, and must be maintained by every member of the organization.

Our performance coaches at Athlete Training and Health have the knowledge and experience to help you reach your potential and improve your overall performance. Stop by and tour any of our three world-class training centers and talk to one of our performance consultants about a free evaluation, so you can start learning more about how to optimize your training program.