The second week of August this year marks the beginning of a new season of the Premier League.
However, as Liverpool and Norwich City kick-off, the players will have already built up stamina, flair, and endurance during pre-season. They have been working hard over the summer holiday, having rested enough after the end of the 2018/2019 season. Have you ever wondered in which aspects do a pre-season training routine differ from a typical training season? In case you are curious to find out how Premier League players regain fitness, be sure to read on.
“Four-four” for fitness
Running long miles and several laps around the pitch is a standard part of any football practice. However, pre-season forces coaches and players to develop a workout routine that is going to boost fitness levels fast. This having said, there is no better exercise than sprinting short distances. Players prefer the “four fours,” an exercise that involves running fast for 4 minutes and then resting the next 4 minutes. By alternating between extreme physical strains and resting in such short intervals, players get a good cardio and build up their fitness nearly instantaneously.
Recovery through proper dieting
We all know that overeating before or after a workout is generally a bad idea. We will either underperform or regurgitate so it is best to “fuel up” the next day. A light, yet strong breakfast Premiership player consume can consist of poached egg and a tad of salmon. This breakfast is rich in proteins but light enough to be consumed before the morning practice. For instant recovery after practice, players resort to energy drinks and energy bars. More often than not, clubs have signed sponsorship deals with the manufacturer of such beverages and power snacks.
Another thing that players are provided with by their club is the clothes. Although they are uniformly dressed, players still have a chance to express their personality through the way they dress. Apart from wacky hairdos, cool soccer cleats are the way for players to be recognizable on and off the pitch. Other players perhaps wear long sleeves or eyewear to make themselves distinguishable. Whatever their emblem is, pre-season is the time to renew it so you can see football stars shopping for unique cleats or characteristics sweatbands.
For those are addicted to gambling (in a positive sense), pre-season is not a dull time. This is the period of the year when the biggest number of friendly matches are played. The clue’s management is responsible for finding opponents who are equally looking at the prospect of testing their squad n a friendly. Individual players usually play a single half so he entire rooster can get a chance to play. These matches are nothing more than expanded training sessions that have a result in the end. However, it is about testing different players and their levels of stamina and endurance that it is about securing a victory over a three-tier lower club.
Pre-season practice is no joke
If you’re a football fan, then you have probably watched those videos where players goof around and play practical jokes on each other. Although such behavior might seem immature at first, it actually helps them get rid of stress before an upcoming match day. Most of these pranks get played out in practice but during pre-season.
During this period, everyone is either too focused on gaining stamina or too tired to fool around on the pitch. Of course, players still smile and make jokes, but pre-season practice sessions are generally played out (pun intended) in a more somber mood. As the pressure starts to rise after the initial couple of games, so does the need to goof around as a means of relieving stress.
A very short holiday
Finally, we must break the myth of long holidays Premier League stars take. In reality, they are seldom longer than four weeks, which is not enough time to go on a proper holiday. This period is even shorter if there are national teams’ competitions being played, like the World Cup or the Euro. All in all, players get maybe 10 days off to travel to a beachside resort with their families.
The pre-season is a period of alternating rest and practice for all Premier League players. August marks the beginning of a new season and they all (and their physios and coaches) hope they will run onto the pitch 100% match fit. In fact, pre-season fitness can directly influence the results of the first couple of rounds.
Bio: Nemanja is editor-in-chief at WalkJogRun and other sites. You can find him on Twitter.
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