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Asmir Begovic: Stay in shape during the off-season

“I’m a goalkeeper and I never know how to stay in shape during the off-season. What sort of things can I do?”
Tom Bettler, via Facebook

Asmir Begovic says:

“Keeping fit over the summer is very important. The focus of pre-season should be getting to know your team-mates and style of play, not getting fit. You should return in good shape.

Working with the club's coaches, I have a gym programme that is relevant to what I do on the pitch. It keeps me in good condition and it’s also functional and appropriate for the demands of my position.

Staying sharp is about repetition – performing the same actions until they become second nature.

However, football takes its toll on you so it’s healthy to have a break from the game. I take two weeks’ holiday to rest and recover.

I play tennis, basketball and volleyball over the summer to help keep me fit. They also improve my goalkeeping, as some of the movements are very similar. For example, rebounding in basketball helps me to build power in my legs for jumping.

I start training three or four weeks before the start of pre-season to make sure I am in decent shape. My programme starts with running and then I move into goalkeeping work a fortnight before reporting back.”

For more football tips see:
James Milner’s guide to the off-season
Joe Hart: Off-season training for goalkeepers
Daley Blind: Off-season essentials
Jordan Henderson: Start the new season with an edge
Adam Lallana: Rest, recuperate and re-energise
Jack Rodwell: Get back into top gear