Gym Workouts that will Improve your Speed, Strength, and Power

Training for game day might not only mean practicing on the field, but also hitting the gym. A good soccer player has an acquired skill set along with a balanced training schedule that focuses on different parts of the body. In order to be a well-conditioned athlete it is important to not give too much of your focus on one specific area, but condition your body as a whole. The gym is for developing horsepower on the field which is crucial for improving performance. By developing power in the weight room, you can actually become a faster runner and stronger athlete. However, it’s important to remember that not all exercises and machines are necessarily your ticket to high endurance and stamina. Selecting the proper exercises is critical because not all workouts are equal. In this article you will learn some workouts specific for improving your power, speed and agility, and legs.

    1. First let’s start with power. 

To improve your power, you can do a simple workout of single-leg hurdle hops. How this works is you stand on one leg and hop up about 6″ into the air and land naturally. Be sure to land softly with your hips down and back, to stabilize your knee and ankle when landing.

2 sets of 4 hops for each leg – Rest 30 seconds between sets

2. This next tip will focus on speed and agility. 

This skill can be improved with 3-way lungesThis workout is just an expansion of a regular lunge. First, start with your back straight and upright, doing a regular lunge forward so your front knee makes a 90 degree angle to the ground. After you bring your knee back and you return to start position, step laterally to the side. After you return to start position, step backwards to do a reverse lunge. After completing all 3 steps with your right leg, do the same to the left leg.

2 sets of 6 reps – Repeat for each leg

3. Finally we can focus on legs (leg strength). 

The perfect workout for yours legs would be squatting. To start, be sure to stand shoulder-width apart and angle your toes forward. Bend your knees and sit back as if you are about to sit in a chair and then return to your upright position. It’s helpful to place two small plates under your feet before starting in order to isolate the quad muscles. Squatting can also be done independently, with a bar (20-30 lbs resting on your shoulders), or with a 25 lb barbell.

5 sets of 10 reps- 3 minutes rest between each set

Be sure to refer back to this article and use these tips for your next gym day!

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How to Fuel up Before a Game

Preparation is key to success for any athlete before a big game, and it’s necessary to keep in mind a few helpful hints that could increase focus and swiftness. Many soccer players take game-day prep very seriously to ensure they will be able to successfully withstand the full 90 minute game. Without the right regimen, it’s easier to become distracted, anxious, and lethargic. We’ve put together some essential game day tips for you to try before your next big game.

  1. Hydrate yourself with water

Staying hydrated is important before, after, and during a game. Sports drinks and juices contain electrolytes that help replenish and restore cells, but may also contain other additives such as large doses of sodium, which end up doing more harm than good. It’s best to hydrate properly the day before, with natural or electrolyte water, drinking a solid 8 ounces. During the game, it’s best to hydrate with small and frequent sips, while after the game, you can intake larger amounts of water at once.

  1. Sleep

Getting a full night’s rest is essential for optimal performance, and this doesn’t just start and end on game days. It’s important to build up a solid routine and stay on a sleep schedule of about 8 hours per night. Before a game, banking up on extra sleep of even 10-11 hours per night has been proven to improve athlete performance.

  1. Pay Attention to Diet

Incorporating a routine and balanced diet is key. ut the night before a game, it’s best to load up on a carbohydrate-rich meal, which will boost energy and stamina levels the following day. It’s best to eat breakfast within the first hour of waking up, and having a high-carbohydrate, moderate-protein and low-fat and fiber meal 3 to 4 hours before the game. Eating properly prevents hypoglycemia, light-headedness, fatigue, and inability to make technical decisions. Overall, the proper diet provides a player with more energy to last the whole game without tiring.

  1. Remember to Have Fun

Don’t doubt your skills and abilities, because mental distractions will hold you back from performing your best. Going into a game with an open mind and the belief that you will do well is known for improving performance. Confidence is key to success!

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What is SOFO United?

Sofo United is a local men’s soccer club located on Long Island, New York. The club manages a team of 30 players and participates in a men’s soccer league. The club is stationed out of Manhasset and was founded by Peter Siafakas in 2010. The name of the club derives from the great Greek thinker and play-writer, Sophocles, who was known for serving as a leader in all aspects of public life.

Since the start, the club has put in tremendous effort to expand its purpose, reach and opportunity for local youth on Long Island interested in soccer. The club has its own training facility for the team along with staff-hired soccer trainers who work with training different youth soccer teams and leagues on Long Island (boys and girls.)

Outside of playing soccer, the club participates in many local fundraisers and hosts a few social events a year. Fundraises include local 5K’s such as Relay for Life or the Out of the Darkness Walk/Run, where teammates set up tables and also participate in the activity. Social events include holiday parties and an annual formal dinner open to the players, trainers, parents, and managers where awards are given out to the Sofo community members.

To learn more about the organization and upcoming events, be sure to visit our Facebook page!