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Wednesday, February 21, 2018

PRE-SEASON TRAINING DO'S #29 - TRAIN LIKE YOU PLAY PART 2


Earlier this week I posted part 1 of this, where we covered:

- Calls/Talk

- Skills

- Train Towards Goals

- Finish with Goals

Here's part 2.

SKILL DRILL STATS - I've been to 3 million training sessions in my 32 yrs of footy and skill mishaps are still regarded as "going to happen" and to just "get over and help out" when a disposal does go sideways but there is ZERO accountability, and the same players just make the same mistakes over and over. If we're here to train, as in to get better, then why aren't we? Players respond to data tracking and immediate feedback which then builds accountability so why not have keep data on skill errors for skill drills at training? My suggestion is to maybe start with the drill, take the data, do it in the middle of the session, take the data then do it again at the end of the session with fatigue present, and again take the data. Players can LITERALLY see what's happening (better/same/worse disposal efficiency) and thus can actually do something about it. Even better use the same drill throughout the year and throw it in at different times and see how the numbers stack up. Most players can kick from A to B but mentally we tune out which is when skill mistakes happen, which correlates with late in quarter and late in games goals against.

FOOTY JUMPERS, SOCKS AND BOOTS - an old coach, probably the one that had the biggest influence on me, made this rule because if you want to train like you play, then you need to get as close to that as possible. Footy jumpers can be a bit restrictive compared to a training singlet, and footy boots can cause all sorts of issues if you don't wear them in early enough, even with pre-worn footy boots. Still I think it's a more psychological boost, especially for practice games which i when you actually put you pre-season to the test.

WARM UP LIKE GAME DAY - there's a saying that "you're only good as your warm up" and most teams these days will have a structured warm up they use pre-game. Again if you want to train like you play then to get as close to the real thing, warm up like you would on game day. Using the same warm up year in and year out is not a great idea though as the warm up is there to prepare players for the game but a warm up with zero unpredictability will NOT stimulate your players minds and bodies for the contests ahead. In the pre-season try different warm ups, different order of drills etc and see what seems to work better then others. Also tinker with dry and wet game day warm ups which are different, don't think they aren't, and should be from the vastly different conditions.

TOUCH SESSIONS - I posted about these sometime last year and I feel these are ridiculously underused, if they are used at all, at local/amateur level. The 1 thing to achieve in these sessions is as many QUALITY touches of the footy per player as possible. That's it. Which means that drills need to be simple to follow so ALL players can perform their skills at a high level, fatigue needs to be kept to a minimum, and players might also need to be grouped so you can run skill drills that fit your players varying degree of skill proficiency. The drills don't need be hard, just ensure a lot and frequent touches of the footy. I mean a simple stationary diamond handball drill among 4 players done for 3mins will easily result in 1 handball every 5 - 6secs at a minimum where each player will perform 30 handballs. Change sides and your up to 60 touches of the footy in 6mins. Most training sessions result in, what 50 touches at the most for your players who love to get involved in everything and who are usually your better players so imagine what you;re lesser players touches are sitting at? They could disposing of the ball less then 10 times a session - RIDICULOUS. I will make up a session of this very soon I reckon or at least put together some drills that would slide nicely into a session like this. Alternatively you might use 20mins each session to dedicate to this which might be your warm up, but structured way better and with far more intent then the normal warm up of lane work etc.

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