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Monday, April 23, 2018

IN-SEASON TRAINING DO'S #6 - MICRO DOSING


As discussed, the in-season doesn't lave a lot of time to train all that you need to for footy.
With say a 90min Tuesday night session and then a 45min session Thursday you've got just over 90ins a week to train:

  • Warm Up
  • Speed
  • Agility/Change of Direction
  • Skills/Tactics
  • Endurance
  • Warm Down

Let's say your 2 warm ups and warm downs take a total of 15mins each or 30ins total - that leaves just 60 mins to cover the other 4 aspects of training at an average time of 15mins per aspect per week.

It just doesn't seem like enough time does it?  

Micro dosing refers to using very quick and efficient blocks of your training time to training the physical aspects of footy such as speed, agility/cod and endurance as you want to dedicate as much time as possible to skills and tactics but not at the expense of everything else.

When micro dosing you'll need to...

  • Determine the optimal exercise variations to use that will elicit the greatest stimulus in the shortest amount of time
  • Implement the most familiar activities you're group has previously used to minimise stoppage/instruction time
  • Program your session so each micro dosing aspect actually potentiates the next aspect all throughout the session essentially implementing the micro dosing aspects as an extended warm up
Let's take speed development as an example.

A specific speed session performed on it;s own might look like this:

1 - Warm Up consisting of Be Activated Reset, Glute Activation, Sprint Mechanics Drills, Sub-Maximal warm up sets

2 - Acceleration consisting of various positional starts of 5 - 20m sprints 80  -100m over 4 - 8 sprints

3 - Max Velocity consisting of 30 - 40m Acceleration to Velocity sprints + Flying Sprints x 5 - 20m over 3 - 5 sprints.

NOTE - Speed sets need to followed by full rest before the next set as you CANNOT and WILL NOT develop any speed at all when any fatigue is present.

This means that a dedicated speed session could take up to 70mins or longer with 3 - 5mins rest between all sprints which is pretty much your training week done.

So from the session laid out above you'll need to decide:

# What are the most important aspects of the session that I HAVE TO KEEP IN?

# What are the least important aspects of the session that I could eliminate to cut back time but not take too much away from the quality of the session?

# Can I break the session up further to fit my training week, yet still train what I need to from a speed point of view?

My suggestions would be to:

* Develop a warm up template that every players gets to know over time so you can easily insert different activities into it to hit new ranges of motions, actions and movements that might incorporate some  of the aspects of the speed warm up

* To again cut the warm up time and thus overall time down you could implement a ball/skills initial warm up with handball and/or touch drills to ramp up speed and intensity which can decrease the amount of warm up speed sets you'll need to do.

* With 2 sessions per week you could do 1 session of acceleration and 1 session of max velocity as an extended warm up. This would mean you could get away with 3 - 4 sprints for each aspect taking 10mins each time.

* During speed set rest periods you could again insert ball/touch drills to keep players engaged and occupied and limit standing around.

* Sprinting is the highest nervous system based exercise you can do so placing this after your warm up but before you're main skill drills can potentiate your players minds and bodies leading to better skills which is exactly what you're after.

* You might cut acceleration sets down to 3 - 4 and max velocity sets down to 2 - 3 sets.

Don't take this as an excuse to train at a lower level, for micro dosing to have it's effects it must be performed at 100% or you'll end up undertraining and that quality, not receiving the stimulus it requires to even be maintained, will start to drop off and performance will suffer.

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