Soccer Conditioning to Produce Impact Players

Create stability through dynamic movements with TRX, medicine ball and resistance band exercises.

To be really effective conditioning for soccer, exercises in a program must promote stability through dynamic movements. Energy transfers have to foster the stability needed for improved shooting, kicking, dribbling and running. (See Abby Wambach's Power and Stability Workout.) Equipment like TRX straps, medicine balls and resistance bands force athletes to maintain stability during the action. The goals of these soccer conditioning exercises are to develop soccer-specific movement patterns, prevent injuries and produce impact players.

TRX One Arm Squat-Row and Shoulder Ball Pass

Sets/Reps: 3x5

Purpose: The trunk rotation and deep squat movement patterns develop reaction time and balance for defensive activities.

How to:

  • Hold the TRX handle with right hand and point both feet forward
  • Lower into squat, twist your trunk to the left and touch the ground with your other hand
  • Moving up from the ground, use your left shoulder to pass a ball that has been tossed from a partner
  • Repeat for specified reps, then repeat on opposite side

TRX Single-Leg Jump and Header

Sets/Reps: 3x6

Purpose: This motion simulates a header a player might perform after a corner kick. It also improves single-leg strength, knee stability and reaction.

How to: 

  • Hold the TRX handle with one foot and move into an elevated split-squat position
  • Jump on your right leg like you are heading the ball
  • Land safely, maintaining balance with your leg
  • Repeat for specified reps, then perform with opposite leg

TRX Single-Leg Plank and One Knee Drive Kick

Sets/Reps: 2x10

Purpose: To enhance rotary stability and knee drive reaction patterns.

How to: 

  • With a ball in front, hold the TRX handle with one foot and move into upright position with core straight and tight
  • Maintain control with your opposite leg and squeeze your core
  • Drive your knee forward, kick the ball and return to starting position
  • Repeat for specified reps, then perform with opposite leg

Medicine Ball Overhead Throws

Sets/Reps: 3x6

Purpose: The explosive power of throwing and the overhead action simulate line-out action on the pitch.

How to: 

  • Hold the medicine ball behind your head with both hands
  • Move three feet forward and extend your hips in a split stance position
  • Fire your shoulders and throw the ball forward as far as you can
  • Repeat for specified reps (no more than 6 per set)
Check out video of this exercise.

20-Yard Resistance Band Acceleration and Drive Ball

Sets/Reps: 4x2

Purpose: To simulate the pull of your shirt during a counterattack and to enhance your running strength and drag action pattern.

How to: 

  • Attach a resistance band around your waist and have a partner provide steady resistance from behind
  • Begin sprinting against the resistance and play the ball forward with both feet
  • Repeat for specified reps

Photo Credit: Getty Images // Thinkstock