Get Football Strong

June 8, 2012

Must See Football Videos


Football is a combative sport, one that requires a great deal of strength, toughness and discipline to play at the highest levels. To be successful, you need to understand that football strength is demonstrated between the sidelines, not in the weight room.

If you are a serious player, forget about becoming a powerlifting champ or a muscle magazine cover model. Lifting maximum weight for a select few exercises will not prepare you for the game; nor will hours spent in the gym pumping iron in hopes of gaining pounds of muscle. Learn how to build strength with the goal of becoming a better athlete.

Injury Prevention

Train your body to withstand high-impact collisions with a full-body strength program. When selecting exercises, focus on core lifts such as the Bench Press, Squat, Deadlift and Pull-Ups. Also, include exercises that build the neck and traps (more on this below), hamstrings, quads, calves, groin, glutes, chest, back (upper and lower), abs and grip.

Learn more about building muscle to prevent injury.

Progressive and Competitive

Your strength-training program should be competitive, but you’re not competing with teammates or opponents. You’re competing with yourself. Throughout every exercise, try to lift more weight or perform more repetitions than the time before. You’ll develop maximum strength when you enter the weight room with an attacking mindset of "one more rep."

Accountability

Football success is not given. It's earned. Hold yourself to a high standard and do the little things well. Maintaining a workout log with a list of exercises, seat settings and previous weights lifted will go a long way toward keeping you focused. Make sure to perform the small exercises—like neck exercises—with the same focus and intensity as your core lifts. Become a champion by paying attention to detail.

Brain Protection

Head contact is a fact of life for football players. Although rules and equipment are designed to keep you safe, you need to protect your head by training your neck and traps. Perform neck and trap training at the beginning of your program, keep accurate records and strive for strength improvements to keep yourself off the injured list.

Neck and Trap Routine

4-Way Neck

  • Sit on bench looking straight ahead with upright posture
  • Perform neck extension, flexion, lateral flexion (right and left) against resistance for specified reps

Sets/Reps: 1x12-15 each direction

Single-Arm Seated Dumbbell Shrugs

  • Sit on bench holding dumbbell at side with elbow straight but not locked
  • Shrug shoulder
  • Slowly relax shoulder to lower dumbbell
  • Repeat for specified reps; perform set with opposite arm

Sets/Reps: 2x12-15 each arm

Dumbbell Shrugs

  • Assume athletic stance holding dumbbells at side with elbows straight but not locked
  • Shrug shoulders
  • Slowly relax shoulders to lower dumbbells
  • Repeat for specified reps

Sets/Reps: 2x12-15

Dumbbell Row

  • Bend at waist until torso is parallel to floor
  • Keep core tight with knees slightly bent
  • Hold dumbbells hanging down with slight bend in elbows
  • Pull dumbbells up until elbows are level with torso
  • Lower to starting position; repeat for specified reps

Sets/Reps: 8-10

Check out our Football Workout guide to customize your own summer football training.

Douglas Scott
- Douglas Scott, CSCS, has been a member of the faculty at Pingry School (Martinsville, N.J.) since 1999, serving both as a teacher and coach. Currently...
Douglas Scott
- Douglas Scott, CSCS, has been a member of the faculty at Pingry School (Martinsville, N.J.) since 1999, serving both as a teacher and coach. Currently...
Must See
Dwyane Wade Leads by Example
Views: 6,431,795
Evan Longoria's Hitting Drills
Views: 9,798,686
Antonio Brown Juggles 3 Footballs
Views: 1,203,239

Featured Videos

A Day in the Life of NBA D-League Star Seth Curry Views: 66,647
Kevin Love's Cone Hop Basketball Shooting Drill Views: 5,931
Eastbay Path to the Pros Episode 2: Laying the Groundwork Views: 124,090
Load More

Resources

STACK Fitness

Everything you need to be fitter than ever

STACK Conditioning

Sport-specific conditioning programs

Coaches and Trainers

Tips and advice for coaches and trainers

Magazine

Latest issues of STACK Magazine

STACK 4W

Women's sports workout, nutrition and lifestyle advice

Gamer

Gaming, entertainment and tech news

Basic Training

Military-style training for athletes

News

Find the latest news relevant to athletes

Most Popular Videos

Perfect Dwyane Wade's Signature Euro Step
Views: 1,308,506
What Ryan Hall Eats for Breakfast
Views: 795,206
STACK Fitness Weekly: How To Do a Muscle-Up
Views: 778,488
Greg Nixon's Hill Training Program
Views: 705,633
Roy Hibbert 540 lbs Deadlift
Views: 1,559,831

Load More
More Cool Stuff You'll Like

The 4 Best and Worst Cable Machine Exercises

Train Like a Pro: Dustin Pedroia's Baseball Power Workout

Build Muscle With the 2-Second Pause Workout Program

3 Habits of Highly Successful Coaches

Abby Wambach's Soccer Power Workout

3 Keys to a Solid Squat Setup

2 Brutal 10-Minute Workouts That Deliver Serious Results

The Top 10 Mistakes Athletes Make in the Weight Room

Train Like a Pro: Baseball Strength Workout Program

Build Bulletproof Chest Strength With This Unconventional Method

Train Like a Pro: Julio Jones 3-Day Sandbag Strength Program

How to Recover From a Soccer Game or Workout

4 Tips for Reducing Deadlift Back Pain

Evan Longoria's Off-Season Strength and Resistance Workout

Jump Higher After a Month With These 3 Exercises

Paul Rabil's Powerful Rotational Strength Workout

Todd Durkin's Complete Football Strength Training Program

Train Like a Pro: James Harden's Basketball Maintenance Workout

Train Like a Pro: Los Angeles Lakers Strength Training Program

Build Strong Legs with the Leg Press Lockdown Workout

3 Reasons Why You Should Do Full-Body Workouts

Use Wave Loading to Take Your Strength to the Next Level

Abby Wambach's Strength and Speed Workout

5 Quick Workout Fixes for Faster Muscle Growth

Add Surprise Sets for a Great Workout Finisher

Not Making Bench Press Gains? Try These Strategies

Increase Athletic Strength with Rotational Bodyweight Training

Train Like a Pro: MLS Soccer Strength Program

Train Like a Pro: Henrik Zetterberg's Hockey Strength Workout

Build a Strong Upper Body With These Landmine Exercises

8-Exercise Advanced Chest and Back Workout

3 Tips to Blast Through Training Plateaus

Get Faster to Pitch Harder

The Un-Liftable Inch Dumbbell: Can You Handle Its Challenge?

How You Can Olympic Lift With an Injury

3 Keys to Better Softball Workouts

Kevin Love's In-Season Workout

Is It Too Soon for Olympic Lifts?

Build Athletic Strength with the Playground Sandbag Workout

Get Faster With This Weightlifting Technique

Bicep Curl Grip Guide: How Hand Placement Changes the Exercise

How to Use the Pallof Press for an Iron Core

Speed Drill of the Day: Reverse Lunges

Speed Drill of the Day: Weighted Arm Swings

Tobin Heath's Powerful Leg Workout

Use Sled Pushes to Increase Speed, Strength and Power