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Football Players: Get Faster With This Off-Season Speed Program

August 4, 2013 | Vinny Caposio

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Increasing your speed in the off-season is critical if you want to take your football game to the next level. If you fail to do this, you may fall behind your competition.

Speed training is a lot like strength training. You must establish a baseline and perform workouts that gradually increase in difficulty. This recipe will help you maximize your results in the limited amount of time you have to train in the off-season.

The following four-phase off-season program will help you increase your speed for football. Couple it with a football strength-training program and you will be on your way to your best season yet.

Phase 1. Recovery

The recovery phase allows for two weeks of rest after the long season. Take care of business in this phase, and you will be primed for higher-quality workouts during the subsequent phases.

Tuesday and Thursday (30-45 minutes)

Phase 2. Work Capacity/ Conditioning

This phase is designed to build your work capacity over a three-week period. Performing Tempo Runs twice per week will increase your resistance to fatigue and help you recover faster between intense drills and exercises.

During this phase, begin your off-season weight-training program.

Tuesday and Thursday (35-60 minutes)

  • Warm-up - 15 minutes
  • 60-Yard Build-Up Sprints - 1x50%, 1x60%, 1x70%, 1x80%, 1x90% (walk back to the start before the next sprint)
  • 60-Yard Tempo Runs - 2x5 @ 80% (rest 45 seconds between runs, 2 minutes between sets)

Phase 3. Speed Training

In this phase, you will increase your speed, agility and quickness over seven months. This is the primary focus of your off-season speed training. Perform each drill at your max speed and fully recover between sets.

Tuesday: Top Speed (45-60 minutes)

  • Warm-up - 15 minutes
  • 60-Yard Build-Up Sprints - 1x50%, 1x60%, 1x70%, 1x80%, 1x90% (walk back to the start before the next sprint)
  • 40-Yard Sprints x 4 (rest for 3-5 minutes)
  • 60-Yard Dash From 3-Point Stance x 2 (rest for 3-5 minutes)
  • Broad Jump x 10 (rest for 30 seconds)

Thursday: Acceleration (45-60 minutes)

  • Warm-up - 15 minutes
  • 30-Yard Build-Up Sprints - 1x50%, 1x60%, 1x70%, 1x80%, 1x90% (walk back to the start before the next sprint)
  • 30-Yard Falling Starts x 4 (rest for 3-5 minutes)
  • 10-Yard Dash From 3-Point Stance x 2 (rest for 3-5 minutes)

The residual effect of your conditioning will last about 30 days. Add Tempo Runs to your workouts once every four weeks.

Phase 4. Preparedness

The final component of your training is to prepare for the season. To transfer your off-season speed gains to performance improvements on the field, add football-specific drills three weeks before your first practice.

Tuesday: Top Speed (45-60 minutes)

  • Warm-up - 15 minutes
  • 60-Yard Build-Up Sprints - 1x50%, 1x60%, 1x70%, 1x80%, 1x90% (walk back to the start before the next sprint)
  • 40-Yards Fly Route (catch a pass) x 8 (rest for 3-5 minutes)
  • Pro Agility With Snap Count x 3 (rest for 3-5 minutes)
  • Broad Jump x 10 (rest for 30 seconds)

Thursday: Acceleration (45-60 minutes)

  • Warm-up - 15 minutes
  • 30-Yard Build-Up Sprints - 1x50%, 1x60%, 1x70%, 1x80%, 1x90% (walk back to the start before the next sprint)
  • 20-Yard Curl Route (catch a pass) x 6 (rest for 3-5 minutes)
  • 10-Yard Option Route (against a defender) x 4 (rest for 3-5 minutes)
  • Med Ball Overhead Toss x 10 (rest for 30 seconds)

Want to get even greater results? Click here to learn how to sprint correctly.

Read more:

Vinny Caposio
- Vinny Caposio is a strength and conditioning coach at the Poly Prep Country Day School (Brooklyn, N.Y.) and at Athletes in Training (Franklin Square, N.Y.)....
Vinny Caposio
- Vinny Caposio is a strength and conditioning coach at the Poly Prep Country Day School (Brooklyn, N.Y.) and at Athletes in Training (Franklin Square, N.Y.)....
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