Before you dust off your football boots and start training again, it’s good to begin by establishing your goals for pre-season. Perhaps you didn’t find the back of the net enough last season or you ran out of gas after 60 minutes? Maybe you want to improve your speed, power or mental strength? We’ve got advice from players and experts working at top clubs so you can map out your pre-season blueprint.
1 Staying fit on the beach
2 Jack Rodwell: Get back into top gear
3 Thiago Silva: Get up to speed for matchday
4 Prepare your body for pre-season
5 Beach fitness
6 Swimming pool workout
More after the break
It doesn’t matter how hard you train during pre-season, you can’t out-train a bad diet. We’ve spoken to a host of experts who have told us exactly what you need to eat to fuel yourself before and after training, lose body fat and gain muscle. All you need to do is click on the links below and find the nutrition tips that suit your goals.
Pre-season is hard work, which means you need to stay hydrated to train at your maximum. Even a one per cent reduction in hydration can affect your physical and technical performance (of course you knew that already), so take the time to have a read of our hydration articles to see how much you need to be drinking.
If you want to run further and faster next term, you need to put in the hard yards during pre-season. We’ve got short sharp sessions devised by Premier League and Football League players and sports scientists to improve your stamina and speed so you start next term fitter than you’ve ever been before.
Strength and conditioning
If you want to build muscle you need to hit the gym. But before you start lifting weights it’s important you know what you’re doing, so we’ve put together a series of workouts to suit every goal. If you want to improve strength, muscular endurance, power, core strength, flexibility or anything else, you’ll find some of our favourite content below.
It’s all well and good getting fit and strong, but if you don’t touch a football during pre-season then you’ll have a touch like a trampoline by the time you play your first game. To make sure your first touch, passing, shooting and dribbling are on point, sift through our library of training drills designed to hone your skills and get you fit at the same time.
1 Master your control
2 How to improve shooting accuracy
3 How to hit pin-point passes
4 Play like Spain: Master the 1v1
5 Play like Spain: Make the killer pass
6 Master technique: Speed with the ball
It’s important to use pre-season to refresh your mind and set new goals. We’ve spoken to a host of sports psychologists, coaches and current and former players to get advice on everything from building mental strength, keeping your emotions in check on the pitch and adapting to new personalities in the dressing room.
1 Get focused for pre-season
2 Pre-season: Mind over matter
3 Pre-season: essential objectives
4 The pre-season survival guide
5 Off-season mind gym
When the hard work is done, it’s important to rest and let your body repair itself ahead your next session. If you don’t, it’ll take you longer to recover and you’ll also increase your risk of picking up an injury. We’ve got tips on getting a good night’s sleep, nutrition, ice baths, stretching, low intensity exercise and much more.