As an AFL key position player, you need to be able to do a lot of things. You need to be able to compete in the air & follow up with tackles and pressure! Take strong marks, and of course kick goals. But how do you train to become one of the best key position players in the league? In this blog post, we’ll show you what kind of AFL training program you need to do to improve your physicality as a key position player. So read on if you want to learn more!
What is an AFL Key Position?
First of all, let’s determine what exactly an AFL key position player is. In simple terms, a key position player is a player who is responsible for playing a vital role in the team’s success. This can be in the form of being a ruckman key forward in attack or a key defender in defense. Key position players are usually the taller players on the field, as they have an advantage when it comes to contested aerial situations.
How important are the roles of AFL key position players? Very important! In fact, in most cases, the key position players are the difference between winning and losing a game. That’s why it’s so important for your team to train specifically and become the best key position player that you can be.
Some of the most famous key position players in AFL history include Lance Franklin, Alex Rance, and Max Gawn. These players are all tall, strong, and have the AFL fitness components to take big marks and impact the game. So if you want to emulate their success, you need to make sure that you’re training smart and doing everything you can to improve your physicality.
AFL Training Programs for Key Position Players
Now that we know what an AFL key position is, let’s take a look at some of the AFL fitness training programs that you can do to become one of the best key position players in the league.
The first thing you need to focus on is your marking. As a key position player, you’ll be required to take a lot of marks during games. To make sure that you’re able to take strong marks, you need to have good total body strength. This means that you need to do plenty of strength training such as Back squats, bench press, and trap bar deadlifts and for the junior athletes master your bodyweight exercises first such as single-leg squats, chin-ups, and push-ups.
Check out this presentation where I discuss this in more detail:
Here’s a sample upper body workout that you can do to improve your marking ability:
- 5 sets of 5 reps of bench press @75-85% of your max
- 4 sets of 10 reps of chin-ups or 5×5 weighted chin-ups
- 4 sets of 8 reps of dips or 5 x 5 weighted dips
- 3 sets of 10 reps of single-leg squats or 5 x 5 trap bar deadlifts working up to a heavyweight
As you can see, this workout focuses on exercises that will help you build strength in all your large muscle groups! These are all important muscles for taking strong marks against the biggest players on the field.
In addition to working on your upper and lower body strength, you also need to make sure that you’re doing plenty of speed and agility training. This is because as a key position player, you’ll need to be able to move quickly and change directions quickly. Some of the best exercises for speed and agility training include sprints, shuttle runs, and plyometric exercises.
Here’s a sample speed and agility workout that you can do to improve your quickness and agility:
- 4 sets of 5 40m efforts @80% speed
- 4 sets of 3 reps of 5m shuttle runs
- 3 sets of 6 reps of trap bar jump squats
- 3 sets of 6 reps of speed bound jump on each side
This workout will help you build explosive speed and quickness. These are both important attributes for a key position player.
In addition to speed and agility training, you also need to make sure that you’re doing plenty of endurance training. This is because as a key position player, you’ll be required to repeat high-intensity efforts over a long period of time during games. Some of the best exercises for endurance training include interval conditioning to develop your aerobic energy system; this can be done with running, swimming, and cycling.
Here’s a sample endurance workout that you can do to improve your stamina and endurance:
- 3 sets of 5 200m run every minute with 5 min rest between sets
- 3 x 5 min fartlek blocks at 30 sec run 15-second walk or 40:20
- 45-60 min low-intensity steady-state off feet conditioning on a bike or swimming
These workouts will help you build up your aerobic capacity so that you can run long distances without getting tired.
You must also try to train your mind as well as your body. As a key position player, you’ll need to have good game sense and decision-making ability. To help improve your mental game, you should try to do some visualization exercises and play games like AFL 9s or touch rugby in the off-season.
Leadership skills will also come in handy as a key position player. As the leader of your team, you’ll need to be able to motivate and inspire your teammates. To help develop your leadership skills, you should try to participate in community service projects and take on leadership roles in school or at work.
If you want to become the best key position player that you can be, then you need to make sure that you’re doing everything you can to improve your ability. By following the tips and training programs in this article, you’ll be well on your way to becoming the best player you can possibly be.
Key Position Training Tips
Now that we’ve looked at some of the best training programs for key position players, let’s take a look at some tips that will help you get the most out of your training.
- Make sure that you’re doing plenty of weightlifting and bodyweight exercises to build strength throughout your whole body.
- Train with a proper AFL strength and conditioning coach to make sure that you’re doing the right exercises. Ideally, you should contact us or try our 14-day free trial.
- Make sure that you’re eating a nutritious diet that provides your body with the fuel it needs to perform at its best.
- Get plenty of sleep and dedicated recovery time. All your hard work will be for naught if your body is not given the proper amount of time to recover and adapt.
- Focus on your strengths and turn them into elite strengths. For example, if you’re naturally quick, focus on speed and agility training to make them stand out!
By following the tips and training programs in this article, you’ll be well on your way to becoming the best player you can possibly be. If you need help or guidance with AFL training, get started on a key position high-performance program.