Soccer pre-season made easy with Catapult One

It’s that time of year again: the soccer pre-season.

While there are no shortcuts when it comes to getting back to full fitness, that doesn’t mean you have to settle for mind-numbing laps around the pitch, shuttle runs and bleep tests. We’ve put together a series of exercises to blow away those summer cobwebs which not only guarantee to put you on the road to your best condition but place emphasis on having the ball at your feet.

You’ll see the benefits as your fitness, performance and muscular endurance improve, while it’s surprising how quickly they start to become easier as you burn off the extra pounds gained from summer holidays abroad.  Once your breath evens out, your muscles feel less fatigued and you’re completing them in quicker times, you can enhance the difficulty by increasing ranges or adding defenders.

With data such as distance covered, top speed, sprint distance and a positional heat map, keep an eye on your progress efficiently this summer with Catapult One. Our GPS pod records every movement you make on the soccer pitch, while our Catapult One app analyses your numbers so you can see the improvements you need to make ahead of the new campaign.

Drill One: Run and dribble

Start on the touchline with the ball at your feet ready to run the width of the pitch. Dribble as fast as you can until you’re level with the halfway line, leave the ball, then drop your speed to about 70 per cent until you reach the touchline. Run back to the ball at the same pace and dribble to the touchline you started at as quickly as possible. Rest for however long it took you to complete this cycle, then repeat for six sets.

Drill Two: Shoot and shuttle

Place three cones at an equal distance between the halfway line and the edge of the box facing the goal. With a ball, start at the halfway line and run at 70 per cent to the first cone, turn and then travel back to where you began at the same pace. Do the same for the second cone, up the intensity to about 80 per cent and produce a different turn. Once back at the halfway line, sprint at full pace to the final cone on the edge of the box and strike at goal. Aim for around three sets with a 30 second break in-between, while you can increase the difficulty by adding a goalkeeper.

Drill Three: Move and sprint  

Place 10 cones in a zig-zag motion about 10 metres apart. At the first cone, you will sprint to the next closest cone with a ball at your feet, change direction, then head to the next cone, change direction and continue until the end of the cones you’ve laid out. At the finish, leave the ball where it is, then alter your point of direction by 90 degrees and go through the zig-zag motion by sprinting forwards and then running backwards. Rest for however long it took you to complete the exercise, then repeat for six sets. This one will burn!