How Soccer Players Stay in Shape During the Off-season | Andrew Elsoffer | Soccer

Andrew Elsoffer
2 min readDec 5, 2022

The off-season is a time to relax and recover for soccer players, but it’s also a potential danger zone. The last thing players want is to fall out of shape or forget skills. In order to stay sharp, it is vital to find a solid balance between relaxation and training.

Give Muscles a Rest

Playing a single sport all year long may result in muscular imbalances, postural asymmetries, ligament fatigue, overuse problems, and intensification of undesirable habits. Soccer players must take some time off to give their bodies a chance to recover, starting with a different workout regimen. Cross-training enables different muscles to get a workout while providing fatigued ones a much-needed rest. Take a break from strengthening your legs and concentrate on strengthening your core, back, upper body, and arms instead.

In addition to maintaining fitness, a regular exercise program might help prevent injuries. An anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) injury is a rupture or sprain common with sports involving abrupt stops or changes in direction and landing, such as soccer. Proper stretching, flexibility drills, agility training, jump landing techniques, and weight lifting during the off-season might prevent a season- or career-ending injury because so many ACL injuries are avoidable.

Keep up With Cardio

Maintaining cardiovascular fitness throughout the off-season is crucial to avoid getting back in shape when the season begins. Two to three cardio sessions each week will maintain your fitness. Suitable cardiac workouts include running, cycling, or using treadmills, ellipticals, or rowing machines at a gym.

Set a Schedule

Ignoring training without a routine can be easy, especially during the off-season. Accountability is more of a personal challenge. Many distractions can keep people from working out and following a healthy diet. A weekly schedule can be as vague or specific as a person’s comfort level. Be sure to schedule light days, hard days, and recuperation days when arranging your exercise.

Let Your Mind Relax

Playing the same sport repeatedly might cause burnout or a lack of enthusiasm. Finding new methods to work out and condition during the off-season may provide mental benefits. Unwind after the strain of competition and the demanding training and games schedule by taking a vacation from the game. For an added edge, include yoga and meditation many times each week. When you take a break from soccer and return to it the following season, you’ll be calm and have more mental clarity and concentration.

Originally published at https://andrewelsoffer.org on December 5, 2022.

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Andrew Elsoffer

Located in Cleveland, Ohio, Andrew Elsoffer is a soccer coach, community leader, and outdoorsman. Learn more @ AndrewElsoffer.org.