06. October 2015 · Comments Off on Training Secrets of Pro Soccer Stars · Categories: Kid Sports, Physical Fitness, Sports

Today I want to share with you some of my favorite advice from Dawn Scott, the fitness and performance coach for the US women’s soccer team. If anyone knows about training, technique, and cool down, it’s her.

Developing Skills On The Field

They become sprinters by developing strong glutes.

When you think sprinting, you probably think legs. But Scott says that activating your glute muscles is an important element of a successful sprint. “We make sure that everyone engages their glutes in the right way by making them strong,” she says. Get there by mastering a Single Leg Russian Deadlift (RDL).

How to do it: Stand with both feet shoulder width apart, and soft knees. Pull up the toes of your left leg, and keeping that leg straight, take your left leg back, bending at your hips, and reach your hands straight down to the floor. Keep your right leg straight with knee soft until your left leg is parallel to the floor. Return your left leg to the floor. Repeat the movement with your right leg. Make sure you always hinge at the hips. Do 8 reps each leg. Rest for 2 minutes and do 3 sets total. Progression: Hold a soccer ball in your hands.

Planks help them shift gears on the field.

Says Scott: “If you’re not strong in the core, you can’t decelerate and accelerate appropriately.” Switching your core on in the right way is key — and one of the best ways to practice that is with a basic plank, says Scott.

How to do it: Lie prone on mat. Place forearms on mat, elbows under shoulders. Place legs together with forefeet on floor. Raise your body upward by straightening body in straight line. Hold position for 30 seconds, then rest and lower to the floor. Rest for 1 minute. Do 3 to 5 times total. Build up to holding for 60 seconds.

– via Q by Equinox

Training tips like these and using the right technique are vital when it comes to mastering any physical skill, like your vertical jump. But the other element you simply can’t skip is the recovery portion of your training time. Below you will see Dawn Scott’s advice for her athletes about the best way to recover and keep yourself safe and limber, no matter how hard your practice got.

How To Recover Like The Pros

1. Cool down.

Gently jog and move around for five to 10 minutes at the end of a practice or game to gradually return the heart rate to resting levels and prevent blood pooling. Follow up with some light stretching.

2. Roll.

Foam rollers can really pinpoint areas of tightness or soreness in muscles, Ms. Scott said. Use the rollers as soon as you can after training and games. But don’t push too hard on sore muscles or you can increase achiness. Let your muscles tell you what they can stand.

3. Really cool down.

Fill your bathtub with cold water and add a couple of bags of ice. Sit in the tub for 10 minutes straight, Ms. Scott advised, and then shower normally.

4. Squeeze.

Pull on compression shorts or socks for a few hours after you have showered or if you don’t find them too uncomfortable, sleep in them for maximum benefit.

5. Sleep.

Make sure your bedroom is quiet and dark. Turn off your cellphone and tablet. “The quality and duration of your sleep will have a big effect on how well you recover,” Ms. Scott said.

– via Well

Do you have a favorite coach whose advice and training secrets you always trust? How do you handle recovery after a hard workout?

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