Pesky Hamstrings

Are you a player who consistently has hamstring problems? Pulled hamstrings are the worst, most pesky injuries imaginable and are super difficult to heal properly. Once pulled, a hamstring is usually prone to injury. And we all know how uncomfortable it is to play with a pulled hamstring. One way that I play through the pain is by using a hamstring warp. This wrap constricts the thigh and holds together the muscle so that you don’t feel the injury as much when going through physical activity. Although proper rest is the only thing that can heal a hamstring injury, this wrap will ensure that you are able to play the game you love, even with an injury like this. I highly recommended this product and hope you invest in one!

https://www.amazon.com/Yosoo-Anti-slip-Adjustable-Hamstring-Tendonitis/dp/B01NBRPPAQ/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1493048812&sr=8-1-spons&keywords=hamstring+wrap&psc=1

Ankle Braces

Are you one of those players who have dealt with numerous ankle injuries throughout your soccer career? If you are like me, a good and reliable ankle brace is necessary to play the game. During my sophomore year of high school, I received my first ankle sprain in a scrimmage with my club team. The recovery period was definitely a challenge. My doctor suggested that I’d invest in the Aircast 60 ankle brace, a brace with bars on the side to prevent ankle-rolling. For years, I used this brace and didn’t have any further ankle problems. That is until one day, I was stupid enough to play a game without it. Last year, during summer soccer, I played a game without wearing the brace and ended up tearing ligaments after going in for a tackle with another player. The Aircast 60 is what has kept me going and playing all these years, and I highly recommend that you invest in it! The following link will guide you to the website in order to purchase one for yourself:

https://www.amazon.com/Aircast-02TML-Stabiliser-Ankle-Medium/dp/B001CRL8CO/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1493048116&sr=8-2&keywords=aircast+60

Protection for the Head

Soccer is one of the leading causes of concussions and is very dangerous for those athletes who love using his or her head (like myself). Between heading the ball and collisions with other players, head injuries can occur and can lead to concussions or other brain injuries. One way I try to prevent concussions from happening is by using headgear. Ali Krieger, one of the USA women’s national team members, uses headgear as well as many other professional soccer players in order to protect their brains. The soft padding absorbs much of the impact that can happen by heading a ball or another player and can help keep you safe during the game. The following link will lead you to the amazon website so that you can purchase headgear for a reasonable price that can help you protect yourself during games!

https://www.amazon.com/Full90-Performance-Soccer-Headgear-Premier/dp/B000BTQ00Y/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1493047613&sr=8-1&keywords=soccer+head+protection

Shots, Shots, Shots, Shots, Shots, Shots… everybody!!

Every player could always use some shooting practice. I know I certainly could! Improving your shot is essential in college soccer. As a player, you need to learn how to control the ball and set up your shot in a rapid period of time before players close down on you. This shooting drill is designed to help you improve your shot so that you can excel on the field, especially in front of the goal. (A wall is needed for this skills session.)

Warm-Up

  • 5 minutes- get 2 yards away from the wall. Quick one-touch passes to yourself off the wall using only the laces of the foot. Locked ankle down (as if shooting from a disatnce),  knee over the ball, striking through the center of the ball. All power should be derived from the quick snapping motion of the lower leg. Switch back and forth with left and right foot. Stretch. Move back to 5 yards away. Repeat for 5 minutes. Stretch. Move back to 10 yards away. Repeat for 5 minutes. Stretch.

Technical Work: Shooting

  • 6 minutes- Back up to 20 yards away. Pick a spot on the wall to aim at each time you shoot the ball. Strike the ball as hard as you can at the sport, again employing a one-touch rhythm. Do not control the ball prior to striking it- just shoot it off the first touch regardless of the bounce. Keep the ball low.
  • 6 minutes- Again at 20 yards. Strike the ball with power and as it comes off the wall, receive it cleanly and quickly fire another shot off the wall. So 2 touches if possible, keeping in mind speed of play. The point is to develop technical speed with a power shot.
  • 6 minutes- 30 yards away. Repeat previous exercise employing a two touch rhythm. Make sure you are alternating your left and right foot.

Technical Work: Shooting

  • Make sure your neck is adequately stretched prior to heading.
  • 1 minute- 2 yards away from the wall. Juggle with head against the wall, using 1 touch on the header
  • 2 minutes- Back up to 5-7 yards of the wall. Throw the ball up against the wall and as it comes off, head with power, getting your entire body into the heading motion.
  • 3 minutes- move to within 5 yards of the wall. Toss the ball against the wall force you to jump to head the ball back at the wall. Head it downward with power. Catch the ball after you have headed it each time. Make sure your toss forces you to jump at the heights of your jump.

Brazilian Circuit Training

What’s better than skills training by yourself? If you think partner training is, then this post is for you! This Brazilian circuit training requires a partner. This is one of my favorite workouts that I love to complete with my friends. I hope you enjoy it as much as I do!

15 minutes- Warm up

Move through each station twice, working for 75 seconds, off for 75 seconds.

Station 1

  • Place 7 cones in a zig-zag, each cone 6 yards apart. Sprint diagonally with the ball making your way around each cone. Use the inside of the foot when changing direction around the cone and the outside for sprinting. Then speed dribble back to the starting cone. Repeat.

Station 2

  • Player A and Player B are 5 yards apart. Player A starts in a sit-up position, does a sit-up and player B tosses the ball so player A can head it back. Repeat.

Station 3

  • Using 6 cones, make 2 small goals 20 yards apart with four of the cones and then place the other two cones in between approximates 7 yards out to the sides. Dribble through the goal, around the outside marker to the other goal. Repeat.

Station 4

  • Player A and player B are 10 yards apart. Player A starts in a sit-up position and PLayer B starts standing with the ball at her feet. Player A does three sit-ups, jumps up and receives a pass, returning it to player B. Player A then sprints around player B and repeats this.

Station 5

  • Set 3 cones in a T formation. 2 cones are 10 yards apart on a line. 3rd cone 10 yards away. Player A starts at 3rd cone. Player B starts with ball a couple of yards on the other side of the line. Player A does a somersault and quickly gets up. Player B passes the ball to the right of the cone, player A runs to the ball and one touches the ball back to player B. Player B then basses the ball to the second cone. PLayer A runs to the cone and basses it back. Player A then runs back and starts again.

Station 6

  • Set 4 cones in a square. Each cone 7 yards apart. Player B is in the center. Player A makes quick passes to different open spaces in the square. Player B should react as fast as possible and pass the ball back to player A in one touch. Repeat.

Ball Control 2.0

Do you need another version of a ball control work out in order to brush up on your skills? If so, then this is the blog post we do! The following blog post will describe a different kind of skills work out we do as CUA soccer players.

Warm up

  • 6 minutes- jog while dribbling ball. Quick touches, changing direction and speed, do this in a confined space. Change direction and stretch intermittently
  • 1 minute- juggle the ball using on your head
  • 1 minute- throw the ball up and jump while you are in the air, stop the ball with your head, settle the ball to your feet and move off quickly
  • 1 minute- juggle the ball using only your thighs
  • 1 minute- throw the ball up, jump and wile you are in the air, stop the ball with your chest, settle the ball and move off quickly
  • 2 minutes- juggle the ball using only your feet

Technical Workout

  1. Place 2 cones/markers 15 yards apart. Dribble in a figure eight using the inside of both feet for turning. As you round each cone, accelerate to the other. Quick touches on rounding cones. Do 6 figure eights, then rest for 30 seconds. Repeat this 6 times
  2. Repeat the same figure out using the outside of the feet
  3. Pass the ball slowly from one cone to the other, sprint to receive the same ball, continue to one touch the ball back and forth for 10 passes. After 10 passes, rest 30 seconds. Repeat 4 times.
  4. Place two cones 25 yards apart- speed dribble, leave the ball and sprint to the first cone, sprint to the ball, collect the ball and speed dribble back to starting point (rest for 30 seconds and repeat this 4 times)
  5. Ball Touches
    • cut the ball with the inside of the right foot, play the ball 1-2 yards away with the outside of the left. Now cut the ball and play it with the outside of the right foot. Continue to keep the ball moving for 1 minute. Rest for a minute and repeat this
    • touch one foot on top of the ball and one on the ground. Alternate feet as fast as possible for one minute moving hte ball, rest for a minute
    • place the ball on the ground. Keep feet together, jump side to side over the ball for one minute. Rest for a minute. Repeat this time, jump back and forth over the ball.

Ball Control

Other fun workouts we do, other than the ones provided by the Techne App, are designed to help develop our touch, ball control and shooting. This post will be dedicated to one of the skill sessions designed to receive balls out of the air. By doing this workout, you can absolutely improve your skill and will help be seen by the CUA soccer coaches!

Warm up: 15-20 Minutes

  • Jog while dribbling ball quick touches, changing direction and speed. Do this in a confined space where many changes and touches are necessary. Change the direction and stretch intermittently

Technical Work: Receiving the ball out of the air

  • Starting in a sitting position, throw ball up, get up and receive the ball out of the air and dribble it off quickly in one direction for 10 yards. Sit down and repeat again
    • 10 times- inside of the left foot
    • 10 times- inside of the right foot
    • 10 times- outside of the left foot
    • 10 times- outside of the right foot
    • 10 times- left thigh
    • 10 times- right thigh
    • 10 times- chest
    • 10 times- head

Technical Work: Ball Control

  • 5 minutes- juggle with feet only
  • 2 minutes, 2 times- High pace dribbling
    • Area: 5×5 grid. Turn and change direction, explode out of the move, fake or turn
    • Use a change of speed
    • Hit each area of the gird
    • One minute rest in between each of 2 times
  • 2 minutes, 3 times- High pace dribbling
    • Area: 10×10 grid. Turn and change direction, explode out of the move, fake or turn
    • Use a change of speed
    • Hit each area of the grid
    • One minute rest in between each of 3 times
  • 5 minutes- juggle using all surfaces

Train like a Champion.

JP Sousa, head coach of the CUA women’s soccer team, loves athletes who have great technical skills. He loves when players are able to control the ball and dominate the style of play each game. It also helps that he has connections with Yael Averbuch, one of the most talented and technically skilled women’s professional soccer players. Averbuch recently introduced the team to the app called “Techne,” an app designed to help players improve their technical skills through different training regimens. For a small fee, this app will provide you with different, weekly technical workouts that can help develop your style of play. From workouts with a partner to individual training, this app is dedicated to help you improve as a player and will help you train like a champion! Follow the link below to find out what kind of technical work outs we do as a team:

http://www.technefutbol.com

“You can never spend too much time with the ball.”- Yael Averbuch

 

 

Suicide Runs

Stinkers and Stinkettes: CUA women’s soccer most dreaded fitness drill (other than the mile and Man-U Fitness tests of course!). These two drills are suicide-like fitness activities we do in order to build up our stamina. These two workouts are great for building up stamina and will certainly help you in the long run!

STINKERS

  • 300 Yard Shuttle Run
  • Directions: set cones 50 yards apart
  • Drill: Do 4 reps under 60 seconds with a two minute rest in between

STINKETTES

  • 300 Yard Shuttle Run
  • Directions: set cones at the 10 yard line, 20, 30, 40 and 50 yards
  • Drill: Do four reps under 70 seconds with a two minute rest in between

Do you want to be like Carli Lloyd?

Carli Lloyd, one of the best women’s soccer players of all time, is consistently busting her butt to be better each and every day. One way she does this is through her “Killer Workout.” Train like the best in order to be one of the best!

CARLI LLOYD’S KILLER WORKOUT

  1. 1/2 mile run in 3 minutes
    • 1:20 rest
    • 1/4 mile run in 1:18 minutes
  2. 150 yard shuttle in 35 seconds
  3. 150 yard shuttle in 35 seconds
  4. 1/2 mile run in 3 minutes
    • 1:20 rest
    • 1/4 mile run in 1:18 minutes