High School Football Workout Program - Annual Planning (Part 1)
So it is now December, that means the high school football season has just wrapped up and for the underclassman and aspiring middle school football players it is time to start preparing for next season.
Contrary to popular belief, the most important part of preparing for the next high school football season is not getting in the weight room the day after the season ends with thoughts of next years state championship swirling around in your head.
Rather, the most important part of preparation for a high school football player is the actual planning and development of an individualized, athlete specific workout program. If your lucky enough to have a high school football coach or weight training coach who is well versed in skill development they will be doing this planning for you, however for that unlucky majority who do not have a coach planning out the full year high school football workout program for you The Wizard will lay out the basics.
Step 1 - Planning - a well rounded high school football workout program breaks out the yearly training cycle into more manageable phases. The Wizard breaks down the annual football workout program into the following Phases -
Phase 1 - Off Season
Phase 2 - Training
Phase 3 - Competition
Phase 1 - Off Season - this is the Phase that occurs at the end of Competition (after the final high school football game of the year). The length of this phase, like all workout phases needs to be tailored to the specific football player.
The Off Season phase in general should last for a period of 1 - 2 months. The goal of this phase is to allow for the athlete to recover both physically and mentally from both the wear and tear of the season.
During the Off Season the only football specific work that should be done would be in relation to recovery from any specific longer term serious or nagging injuries that the player is dealing with.
Otherwise the football player should spend this period ensuring that adequate recovery methods (such as TENS, contrast baths, sauna, yoga, meditation, adequate sleep, etc) are being used to bring the body back to optimal stasis.
No football specific football skill drills should be done during this time. Light weight, high repetition non-specific weight training can be done 2 - 3 times per during this Phase to combat detraining if the athlete insists on being in the weight room or if the Off Season phase is planned to last closer to 2 months, however the goal should be to use the minimal effective dose of weight training during this time frame to simply reduce the possibility of detraining.
Additionally to combat detaining, maintain general aerobic fitness and develop non-specific motor skills the football player if healthy should partake in some form of cross training via participation in another sport or sports on a recreational level such as basketball, soccer, racquetball, etc.
By the end of the Off Season phase the football player should be completely recovered from the prior football season and ready to enter the more intense Training Phase where the real gains are made!
Please continue reading the next part of the series on Developing a High School Workout Plan - here.