Strength & Conditioning Advice for Young Football Players

Much of my background as a strength and conditioning coach comes from working with elite youth football/soccer players.

I played the game at a relatively high level underage and began training with weights when I was around 14 or 15 years old.

Strength, Power & Speed for Soccer Players

Getting stronger, faster and becoming a more powerful athlete on the football pitch is a big deal. Strength, power and speed often separates local level players to county and regional level players.

Of course technical ability matters but the reality for 80-90% of underage players is that if you are small, lack quick change of direction or pure speed or that “X” factor  your rate of progress will be hampered.

Starting strength and conditioning training between the ages of 14 to 16 is a fantastic idea. We understand that it can be hard to juggle all the training sessions, matches and increased amount of work at school but it is definitely worth it.

By training at an early age you will have the opportunity to get a head start on your competition by developing enhanced coordination and increasing strength which will help you in real world match situations.

We highly recommend starting a strength and conditioning programme under the supervision of a qualified and experienced strength and conditioning coach.

While there is a lot to be gained with strength training, the reality is that gyms can be dangerous if you don’t know what you’re doing.

We use a long-term and sustainable approach to strength and conditioning for youth soccer players and help introduce them to lifting weights in a comfortable environment.

It’s important to not do too much too soon as this can lead to excessive soreness and take away from the most important part; training and playing at maximum capability each and every week.

Strength Training For The Youth Football Player

Just this past week we introduced another youth football player to strength and conditioning. A gym can seem overwhelming so it is important to start slow, build confidence and look to make small progressions each week.

As a strength and conditioning coach to youth football players in Waterford, I use a big picture approach; How is the player now and where do they need to go?

Power & Strength Standards for Youth Soccer Players
Sport Specific Strength Training for Soccer Goalkeepers
6 Challenging Soccer Speed & Agility Drills

Training Template for 15 Year Old Player

See below of the exact training session I used for a 15 year old football player that had never trained in a gym before.

series Exercise Sets and reps
a Goblet squat 6 x 6
a 90/90 rotation 6 x 6
b Single leg bridge 3 x 12
b Box jump 4 x 4
c Elevated push up Max reps x 3
c Band pull apart 3 x 20
d Split stance pallof press 4 x 8
d Single leg sit up 2 x 8

This full body session (including the warm-up phase and room for static stretching at the end) lasted 50 minutes.

We will continue to progress these exercises as well as sets and reps before introducing some heavier lower body movements. We will also increase the total amount of power work completed each session as well as the amount of single leg work exercises.

Demonstrations of all exercises listed above can be found on our YouTube page.

Soccer Specific Strength and Conditioning Training in Waterford | Motiv8 Fitness

If you have any questions regarding this programme or would like to work with us in person in our gym in Waterford, email, text, call or WhatsApp +353892688001 or complete the form below and we’ll get back to you!