The following interview is reprinted with permission from Performance Conditioning Soccer (Ken Kontor - Publisher). The interview was originally printed in the PCS Newsletter Volume 18, #7 and took place in 2014 prior to Tondl's junior season at Texas A&M.
Performance Conditioning Soccer has selected and organized past articles to help you design your own soccer-specific strength and conditioning program using the "Fit to a T" 7-T System of Program Design. This library spans our 20 years of bringing coaches reliable how-to articles from the worlds leading soccer conditioning experts. Find Out More
This article is accompanied by Less is More - Gaining the Player Perspective
By Ed Dudley, Performance Enhancement Trainer, Nine Time State Championship Soccer Coach, Marian High School, Omaha, Nebraska
The following training session is done in 30 minutes. Exercises are performed with 60 soccer balls and two players alternating, one who does the drill while the other recovers. (If you don't have 60 soccer balls, don't worry. Grab an extra friend to shag balls and you can do this drill with far fewer balls.) Sprints are performed at top speed, finishing in front of a goal with a shot on goal. Each player does six balls at a time in continuous fashion with the coach feeding the player at the end of each run. After six balls, the training partner performs the same exercise while the other player rests. The total work load for each exercise is five sets of six balls each, 30 balls per player, totaling 60 balls. After the 60 balls are played, they are retrieved by the players as a recovery before the next exercise. If a player can effectively shoot at the end of each exercise, then finishing during a game should be easy.
Exercise #1 Half-Moon Runs
- Distance covered is 10-12 yards with the ball-feeding coach standing in the middle of the 10-12 yard course.
- Player sprints in a semi-circle (half-moon)
- One touch shot at end of each run
This exercise is especially enjoyed by forwards. The coach can keep score to increase shooting focus.
Exercise #2 Front Backs
- Player runs to the coach, stops and reverses direction while the coach tosses the ball over the head of the player. Player chases and shoots on goal.
- Distance covered is eight to 10 yards
- Try to hit one touch volley off bounce
This exercise emulates the “cone test” that some coaches use for a fitness test.
Exercise #3 Two Touch Shooting
- Runs are straight across (square) server
- Distance covered is four or five yards
First touch quick, keeping the ball “tight” and close, second touch is a quick shot (simulates game conditions – not much room in box with defenders).
Exercise #4 Chest Trap, Spinning Volley
- Player starts stationary (light on feet) to one-yard area.
- Ball tossed as chest pass and controlled
- Player spins toward goal and shoots
Coordination, touch, timing (plus a fun finisher)!
To decrease the intensity, these exercises can be done with four rather than two players. There are many variations; these shown are only a fraction of what can be done.