Soccer strength training is crucial for athletes to prepare them for a strenuous 90 minute match. This physically demanding sport requires many physical attributes, including muscular strength. Attaining muscular strength can be achieved through a series of strength training exercises that involve building lean muscle mass. There are a number of soccer strength training exercises that can be done to build muscle.
Squatting is the most well-known exercise for building leg muscle. This exercise is a regular part of a soccer player's work-out routine, since it keeps their leg muscles strong and powerful. Begin by standing with feet shoulder-width apart. While keeping the spine straight and the buttocks sticking out, slowly lower your body until your knees are at a 90 degree angle. Slowly raise your body until you are back in the starting position. Try to do about three sets of 10 reps to get maximum results.
Squats can also be done one leg at a time for an even greater, more intense work-out. To perform these, keep one leg out in front of you while lowering your body. Hold onto an object for support and balance, such as a chair or table. Alternate legs, and try to perform about three sets of 10 reps on each leg.
Sprinting may be assumed by many to be strictly a cardio exercise, but it also has muscle building capabilities. Sprinting engages the fast-twitch muscle fibers in the quads and hamstrings. Two days of sprinting per week should help to increase the muscle mass in your legs. This can be done on a track, in a park, or even on a treadmill.
On a track, sprint between 30 to 50 feet as fast as possible, then jog lightly for another 50 feet. Continue this cycle about five to ten times. Each time you perform this routine, you should be able to increase your sprinting length, while keeping your jog the same length. Be sure to adequately warm-up and stretch before engaging in this exercise in order to minimize pulling your hamstring muscles.
Running uphill takes on a new level of sprinting. It is a very vigorous and exhausting exercise, which produces results. Soccer players usually engage in uphill sprints as part of their training regimen because of how effective this exercise is at building leg muscle and strength.
Find a hill that takes at least a few seconds to run up. Sprint up to the top as fast as you can, then lightly jog back down. Without stopping at the bottom of the hill, repeat this uphill sprint. Continue this cycle about 5 to 10 times to get the full effect of the sprints.
Explosive bursts of power jumping has wonderful effects on the muscles in the legs. These power jumps develop power and muscle in all muscles of the legs, including the quadriceps, hamstrings and calves. The key is to do them quickly, with a lot of power, and to get as much height as possible.
To perform these jumps properly and effectively, begin by standing with your feet shoulder-width apart. Get into a semi- squat position, and with all your might, jump vertically as high as you can. As you jump in the air, drive your knees to your chest to get even more out of the exercise. Do about five sets of 20 jumps to maximize muscle building.