5 business tips for personal trainers and strength & conditoning staffCategoriesPLP Podcast Weekly Updates

Episode 79 – 5 business tips for personal trainers and strength & conditioning staff

Highlights of the episode:

  • Have a theme from a marketing point of view
  • Have a consistent schedule
  • Involve the community and provide free value
  • Collaboration
  • Retention

5 Effective Business Tips for Personal Trainers and Strength & Conditioning Staff

Running a successful personal training business requires more than just having great fitness knowledge and training skills. To truly thrive in the industry, personal trainers and strength and conditioning staff need to master various aspects of business, marketing, and client engagement. In this blog post, we will discuss five essential tips that can help you build leads, engage with your community, provide value, collaborate with others, and retain clients effectively. Let’s dive in!

1. Think in Themes and Create Content

Building leads for your personal training business starts with creating compelling content that resonates with your target audience. One effective strategy is to think in themes and develop content around those themes. For example, if you specialize in strength training, you can create content on topics like proper form, nutrition for muscle growth, and workout routines. By consistently delivering valuable content related to your themes, you establish yourself as an authority and attract potential clients who are interested in your expertise.

2. Implement a Content Creation Schedule

Consistency is key when it comes to content creation. Develop a schedule for your content and stick to it. For instance, you can dedicate Thursdays for interviews with guests and another day for weekly updates on specific topics. Repurpose your existing content by creating short videos (under 60 seconds) for platforms like Instagram and TikTok. This way, you can reach a wider audience and promote your older episodes or topics. Having a content creation schedule ensures that you maintain consistency in your marketing efforts.

3. Engage with Your Community

Building a strong community around your personal training business is vital for long-term success. Actively engage with your audience by posting questions, polls, and other interactive content on social media platforms like Instagram. Create discussion forums or online communities where members can share their experiences, ask questions, and seek advice. By involving your community in your business, you foster a sense of belonging and build stronger relationships with your clients.

4. Provide Free Value

One of the most effective ways to attract and retain clients is by providing free value. Offer valuable resources such as newsletters, podcasts, and blog posts that educate and inspire your audience. These free resources showcase your expertise and demonstrate your commitment to helping others achieve their fitness goals. By consistently delivering high-quality content, you build trust and loyalty among your audience, increasing the likelihood of them becoming paying clients in the future.

5. Collaborate with Like-Minded Individuals

Collaboration is a powerful tool for expanding your audience and increasing engagement. Partner with like-minded individuals in your niche to create mutually beneficial collaborations. For example, you can invite guest experts to your podcast or participate in joint projects with other trainers or fitness professionals. Collaborative efforts introduce your business to new audiences and provide fresh perspectives and insights. By leveraging each other’s networks, you can reach a broader demographic and establish yourself as a go-to expert in your field.

6. Focus on Client Retention

While acquiring new clients is important, retaining existing ones is equally crucial. Continuously refine and improve your products and programs to ensure client satisfaction and long-term loyalty. Seek feedback from your clients and make adjustments accordingly. Add new elements or variations to your programs to cater to different needs and preferences. By prioritizing client retention, you create a positive reputation for your business and benefit from positive word-of-mouth referrals, which can lead to further growth and success.


As a personal trainer or strength and conditioning staff, mastering the business side of your profession is essential for sustainable growth. By implementing the five tips discussed in this blog post – thinking in themes, creating a content creation schedule, engaging with your community, providing free value, collaborating with others, and focusing on client retention – you can effectively build leads, establish a strong online presence,

Listen: iTunes | Spotify
Strength and conditioning programs for seniors or adultsCategoriesPLP Podcast Weekly Updates

Episode 78 – Local Senior Football Strength & Conditioning Advice

Highlights of the episode:

  • Start preseason in January
  • Complete 80% of your training sessions
  • Rest every 8 to 10 weeks
  • First session should be a flush run
  • Hamstring strengthening and lengthening

Maximizing Performance: A Comprehensive Guide to Pre-Season Training


Pre-season training is a crucial period for athletes and sports enthusiasts alike. It lays the foundation for a successful season by optimizing motivation, readiness, and physical capabilities. In this blog post, we will explore a comprehensive approach to pre-season training, focusing on key strategies and considerations to enhance performance and reduce the risk of injuries.

1. Start Pre-Season Training in January for Optimal Motivation and Readiness:

Beginning pre-season training in January allows athletes to kickstart their preparations well in advance of the competitive season. By starting early, athletes can gradually build their fitness levels, improve skill sets, and develop mental resilience. This extended timeline provides ample opportunity for targeted training programs and ensures that athletes are primed and motivated for upcoming challenges.

2. Conditioning and Strength Program during November and December:

While still in the off-season, it’s essential to maintain a conditioning and strength program. This phase focuses on building a solid foundation of fitness, improving strength, and enhancing overall athleticism. Engaging in regular cardiovascular exercises, resistance training, and agility drills during November and December will help athletes enter the pre-season phase with a solid base, ready to tackle more intense training sessions.

3. Aim for 80% Training Session Completion:

Consistency is key in any training program. Strive to complete at least 80% of scheduled training sessions to maximize the benefits. Regular participation in training sessions ensures progressive improvement, enhances skill acquisition, and reduces the risk of injuries. Aim to strike a balance between pushing your limits and allowing for sufficient recovery.

4. Recognize the Signs of Fatigue and Take Breaks:

Pre-season training can be physically and mentally demanding. It is crucial to listen to your body and recognize signs of fatigue or low concentration. Pushing through extreme exhaustion can lead to burnout or injuries. If you experience these symptoms after 8 to 10 weeks of intensive training, consider incorporating a short break into your schedule. This break will provide an opportunity for recovery, rejuvenation, and mental reset.

5. Structure Weekly Training Sessions for Optimal Results:

When designing your weekly training sessions, it’s essential to strike a balance between restorative movement, recovery, and high-intensity drills. Begin the week with lighter exercises, focusing on mobility, flexibility, and active recovery. This approach helps alleviate any residual soreness and prepares the body for the week ahead. As the week progresses, gradually increase the intensity and incorporate sport-specific drills, tactical work, and conditioning exercises. Reserve Thursdays for higher intensity drills to simulate game-like conditions and enhance match readiness.

6. Emphasize Hamstring and Posterior Chain Exercises:

The hamstrings and posterior chain play a critical role in athletic performance, especially in sports involving running, jumping, and explosive movements. Devote specific attention to hamstring and posterior chain exercises to strengthen these areas. Exercises such as deadlifts, glute bridges, Romanian deadlifts, and hamstring curls can improve strength, power, and reduce the risk of hamstring injuries.

7. Incorporate Stability Work for the Foot, Hip, and Trunk:

Enhancing stability is vital for athletes to maintain balance, prevent injuries, and optimize performance. Include stability exercises targeting the foot, hip, and trunk muscles. Single-leg exercises, such as single-leg squats, lunges, and lateral hops, can improve proprioception and strengthen the stabilizing muscles. Additionally, exercises like planks and side planks can enhance core stability, contributing to overall body control and injury prevention.


Pre-season training is the building block for success in any sports season. By implementing the strategies discussed in this blog post, athletes can optimize their motivation, readiness, and physical capabilities. Starting pre-season training in January, following conditioning and strength

Listen: iTunes | Spotify
A Guide to AFL Strength & Conditioning Training by PositionCategoriesPLP Podcast Weekly Updates

Episode 77 – How to Train for Your AFL Playing Position

Highlights of the episode:

  • Midfielder position training
  • Inside mid position training
  • Midforward and speed defender position training
  • Key forward and ruckman training


Australian Football League (AFL) is a physically demanding sport that requires strength, speed, and endurance. Players in different positions have different requirements for training. In this article, we will discuss the training requirements for four key positions in AFL: inside midfielders, outside midfielders, speed forwards, and key position players.

Inside Midfielders

Inside midfielders are known for their ability to win contested balls and provide a link between defense and offense. They need to be strong and durable to withstand the physical demands of the position. Functional strength training is a key component of their training regimen.

Functional strength training focuses on building body armor, which means strengthening the muscles and joints that are most often used in the sport. Lower body strength sessions for inside midfielders involve heavy squats, box squats, or trap bar deadlifts. These exercises target the glutes, hamstrings, and quadriceps, which are essential for explosive power and speed.

Upper body strength is also important for inside midfielders. They need to be able to win contested balls and fend off opponents. Exercises like bench presses, chin-ups, and dips are great for building upper body strength.

In addition to strength training, inside midfielders should also incorporate agility and core stability exercises into their training regimen. These exercises improve balance and coordination, which are essential for winning a contested ball.

Outside Midfielders, Speed Forwards, and Speed Defenders

Outside midfielders, speed forwards, and speed defenders are known for their speed and agility. They need to be able to cover ground quickly and change direction on a dime. Speed and power training are important for these positions.

Sprint training is a key component of speed and power training. Players should incorporate both short and long sprints into their training regimen. Short sprints improve acceleration, while long sprints improve top-end speed. Plyometric exercises like box jump and depth jumps are also great for improving explosive power.

Agility training is also important for these positions. Cone drills, ladder drills, and shuttle runs are great for improving footwork and agility. Core stability exercises like planks and Russian twists improve balance and coordination.

Key Position Players

Key position players like full forwards, fullbacks, and ruckmen have different training requirements than other positions. Body mass is a factor for these players, and they should focus on strength training with high intensity and get in plenty of calories.

Strength training should focus on compound exercises like squats, deadlifts, and bench presses. These exercises target multiple muscle groups and are great for building overall strength and power. Key position players should also incorporate isolation exercises like bicep curls and calf raises to target specific muscle groups.

In addition to strength training, key position players should also focus on their nutrition. They need to consume plenty of calories to maintain their body mass. A diet rich in protein, carbohydrates, and healthy fats is essential for building and maintaining muscle mass.


Training for AFL requires a combination of strength, speed, and endurance. Players in different positions have different training requirements. Inside midfielders should focus on functional strength training to build body armor. Lower body strength sessions for inside midfielders involve heavy squats, box squats, or trap bar deadlifts. Speed and power training is important for outside midfielders, speed forwards, and speed defenders. Key position players should focus on strength training with high intensity and get in plenty of calories. A well-rounded training regimen that incorporates strength training, sprint training, agility training, and core stability exercises is essential for success in AFL.

  1. Australian Football League, 2018 Australian Football League Annual Report. viewed 6 October 2021 https://www.afl.com.au/annual-reports 2018.
  2. Aughey RJ. Australian football player work rate: Evidence of fatigue and pacing? Int J Sports Physiol Perform 5: 394–405, 2010.
  3. Black GM, Gabbett TJ, Johnston RD, et al. Physical fitness and peak running periods during female Australian football match-play. Sci Med Footb 2: 246–251, 2018.
  4. Boyd LJ, Ball K, Aughey RJ. The reliability of MinimaxX accelerometers for measuring physical activity in Australian football. Int J Sports Physiol Perform 6: 311–321, 2011.
  5. Burgess D, Naughton G, Norton K.Quantifying the gap between under 18 and senior AFL football: 2003 and 2009. Int J Sports Physiol Perform 7: 53–58, 2012.
  6. Burgess D, Naughton G, Hopkins W. Draft-camp predictors of subsequent career success in the Australian Football League. J Sci Med Sport 15: 561–567, 2012.
  7. Cohen J. F tests on means in the analysis of variance and covariance. Statistical Power Analysis for the Behavioural Sciences (2nd Edition). 273–406. New York, NY: Routledge Academic, 1988.
  8. Coutts AJ, Quinn J, Hocking J, Castagna C, Rampinini E. Match running performance in elite Australian Rules Football. J Sci Med Sport 13: 543–548, 2010.
  9. Delaney JA, Thornton HR, Burgess DJ, Dascombe BJ, Duthie GM. Duration-specific running intensities of Australian Football match-play. J Sci Med Sport 20: 689–694, 2017.
  10. Foster C, De Koning JJ, Hettinga FJ, et al. Pattern of energy expenditure during simulated competition. Med Sci Sports Exerc 35: 826–831, 2003.
Listen: iTunes | Spotify
AFL how to pack on 5 kg of muscle in 8 weeksCategoriesPLP Podcast Weekly Updates

Episode 76 – Top 5 Tips for Footballers Gain 5kg of muscle in less than 8 weeks

Highlights of the episode:

  • Get a surplus of your caloric intake
  • Eat plenty of protein
  • Lift Heavy
  • Get enough rest and sleep
  • Hire a strength and conditioning coach


Football is a physically demanding sport, and it requires a lot of energy and stamina to play it effectively. As a footballer, you need to be in good shape, both physically and mentally, to perform at your best on the field. One of the essential components of physical fitness is muscle mass. Building muscle is a critical aspect of football, as it helps increase your strength, power, and explosiveness, all of which are essential for success on the field.

If you’re a footballer looking to gain 5kg of muscle in less than 8 weeks, there are some essential tips that you need to follow. In this blog post, we’ll take a look at the top 5 tips for footballers looking to gain muscle mass quickly and effectively.

1. Get a Surplus of Your Caloric Intake:

The first and most important tip for gaining muscle mass is to ensure that you’re in a caloric surplus. A caloric surplus means that you’re consuming more calories than you’re burning, which creates the perfect environment for muscle growth. When you’re in a caloric surplus, your body has the energy and resources it needs to build new muscle tissue.

To calculate your caloric needs, you need to determine your basal metabolic rate (BMR) and then factor in your activity level. Your BMR is the number of calories your body burns at rest, and it’s influenced by your age, weight, height, and gender. Once you’ve determined your BMR, you can then factor in your activity level and determine how many calories you need to consume to be in a caloric surplus.

It’s essential to remember that you need to be in a moderate caloric surplus to gain muscle mass effectively. You don’t want to consume too many calories, as this can lead to excessive fat gain, which can negatively impact your performance on the field.

2. Eat Plenty of Protein:

Protein is the building block of muscle tissue, and it’s essential for muscle growth. When you’re in a caloric surplus, your body needs protein to build new muscle tissue effectively. As a footballer, you need to consume enough protein to support your muscle growth.

The recommended protein intake for athletes looking to gain muscle mass is around 1.6-2.2g per kg of body weight per day. This means that if you weigh 70kg, you need to consume between 112-154g of protein per day.

Good sources of protein include lean meats such as chicken, turkey, and beef, fish, eggs, dairy products, and plant-based sources such as tofu, lentils, and beans. It’s essential to spread your protein intake throughout the day, consuming protein with every meal and snack to ensure your body has a constant supply of protein to support muscle growth.

3. Lift Heavy:

Strength training is a critical component of building muscle mass, and lifting heavy weights is essential for achieving the best results. Heavy lifting stimulates muscle growth by creating micro-tears in the muscle fibers, which then repair and grow stronger.

As a footballer, you need to focus on compound exercises that work for multiple muscle groups simultaneously. These exercises include squats, deadlifts, bench presses, pull-ups, and rows. Compound exercises are effective because they allow you to lift heavier weights, which leads to more significant muscle growth.

It’s essential to follow a structured strength training program that focuses on progressive overload. Progressive overload means gradually increasing the weight you lift over time, which ensures that your muscles are continually being challenged and stimulated to grow.

4. Get Enough Rest and Sleep:

Rest and recovery are just as important as exercise and nutrition when it comes to building muscle mass. When you’re in a caloric surplus and lifting heavy weights, your body needs time to recover and repair the

5. Hire a Strength and Conditioning Coach:

As highlighted in the podcast, hiring a strength and conditioning coach is crucial to ensure that your training is tailored to your specific needs. A coach can design a program that focuses on building muscle while also improving your speed, agility, and endurance.

In summary, if you’re a footballer looking to gain 5kg of muscle in less than 8 weeks, you need to prioritize strength training, nutrition, rest, and recovery, and seek guidance from a professional coach. By following these tips and staying dedicated, you can achieve your muscle gain goals and improve your performance on the field.

Listen: iTunes | Spotify
The importance of strength & speed training in seasonCategoriesPLP Podcast Weekly Updates

Episode 75 – Essential Speed and Strength Training Tips for the In-Season Phase

Highlights of the episode:

  • Tip #1: Hit 2 to 3 reps of your max velocity once a week
  • Tip #2: Improve max strength
  • Tip #3: Consistency Pays
  • Key Core exercise for the week: Rotational Power throw
Listen: iTunes | Spotify

Welcome back to another episode of the AFL podcast! In this episode, we’re going to dive into three valuable tips that can help you improve your performance on the field. We’ll also discuss a key core exercise for the week that can help you develop your rotational power.

Tip #1: Hit 2 to 3 reps of your max velocity once a week Our first tip is all about improving your speed on the field. It’s important to remember that while speed is a natural gift for some, it can also be developed and improved with training. One effective way to do this is by hitting 2 to 3 reps of your max velocity once a week. This type of training involves running at your maximum speed for a short distance, allowing your body to get used to the intensity and stress of running at that speed. Over time, this will help you build up your speed and endurance, making you a more effective player on the field.

Tip #2: Improve max strength Another key factor in improving your performance is building up your max strength. This includes exercises like squats, deadlifts, and bench presses, which target the major muscle groups in your body. By focusing on increasing your max strength, you’ll be able to generate more power and force when you run, jump, and tackle. This will help you become a more dominant player on the field and give you an edge over your opponents.

Tip #3: Consistency Pays Our final tip is all about the importance of consistency in your training. You can’t expect to see significant improvements if you only work out sporadically or skip sessions. It’s essential to create a regular training routine and stick to it, even on days when you don’t feel like it. Over time, this consistency will pay off, and you’ll see improvements in your speed, strength, and endurance.

Key Core exercise for the week: Rotational Power throw Finally, let’s talk about our key core exercise for the week. The Rotational Power throw is a fantastic exercise for developing your rotational power, which is crucial for movements like twisting, turning, and throwing on the field. To perform this exercise, stand sideways to a wall with a medicine ball in your hands. Rotate your torso as far as you can in one direction, then throw the ball against the wall with as much force as possible. Catch the ball on the rebound, and repeat on the other side. This exercise is an excellent way to develop your core strength and power, which will translate directly to your performance on the field.

In conclusion, these three tips and core exercise can help you improve your performance on the field. By incorporating these tips into your training routine and focusing on developing your speed, max strength, and consistency, you’ll be well on your way to becoming a more effective and dominant player. So, keep working hard, stay consistent, and never stop pushing yourself to be the best you can be!

Improving Performance with Strength & Conditioning for Aussie Rules Football (1)CategoriesPLP Podcast Weekly Updates

Episode 74 – 3 Tips for Footballers Wanting to Get Drafted in AFL

Highlights of the episode:

  • Tip #1 Focus on what your talents are
  • Tip #2 Create a training schedule
  • Tip #3 Have a support team around you
  • Free workout for aerobic capacity

The Australian Football League (AFL) is a high-performance, fast-paced, and competitive sporting league that attracts thousands of young footballers from across the country. The league comprises 18 teams, with each team consisting of a squad of players selected through an annual draft process. The AFL draft is the most important event for young footballers looking to secure a place in the league, and it is highly competitive.

If you’re an aspiring AFL player, you need to be prepared to put in the hard yards to stand out and catch the attention of scouts and recruiters. In this blog post, we’ll discuss three tips for footballers wanting to get drafted in the AFL, including insights from industry experts and former players.

Tip #1: Focus on What Your Talents Are

One of the most important things you can do as an aspiring AFL player is to identify your talents and work on developing them. This is a key piece of advice shared by AFL player and coach, Brendan McCartney, during a recent interview on the “AFL Exchange” podcast.

McCartney stressed the importance of players knowing their strengths and weaknesses and working on their skills to become an asset to a team. He also advised against trying to be a jack-of-all-trades, saying that it’s better to excel in one or two areas rather than trying to be average at everything.

To identify your talents, you can start by reflecting on your playing style, strengths, and weaknesses. Think about what you bring to a team, whether it’s your speed, agility, tackling ability, or kicking accuracy. It’s also helpful to get feedback from coaches, teammates, and even opponents to identify areas you excel in.

Once you’ve identified your strengths, focus on honing those skills through targeted training and practice. For example, if you’re an excellent tackler, you could work on improving your speed and agility to become even more effective in that area. By focusing on your strengths, you’ll become a standout player that recruiters will take notice of.

Tip #2: Create a Training Schedule

Another key tip for aspiring AFL players is to create a training schedule that will help you improve your skills and fitness levels. This is particularly important in the lead-up to the draft, as recruiters will be looking for players who are in top physical condition.

Former AFL player and current commentator, Nick Riewoldt, discussed the importance of a training schedule during a recent episode of the “AFL Exchange” podcast. Riewoldt emphasized the need for players to have a structured approach to their training, with clear goals and benchmarks to work towards.

When creating your training schedule, it’s important to consider a range of factors, including your current fitness levels, the areas you want to improve in, and the time you have available to train. You may want to consult with a coach or personal trainer to help you design a program that will help you achieve your goals.

Your training schedule should include a mix of strength and conditioning work, as well as skill-based drills and practice games. It’s also important to include rest and recovery time to allow your body to recuperate between sessions.

Tip #3: Have a Support Team Around You

The journey to becoming an AFL player can be challenging, both physically and mentally. That’s why it’s essential to have a support team around you to help you stay motivated, focused, and on track.

During a recent episode of the “AFL Exchange” podcast, former AFL player and current coach, Brad Scott, emphasized the importance of having a support network. Scott highlighted the value of having people around you who can provide encouragement, guidance, and support during the ups and downs of the draft process.

Your support team could include family members, coaches, mentors, and even other players in your local football community. These people can offer advice

Free workout for aerobic capacity

Maintaining good physical health is crucial for leading a healthy life. Among the various aspects of fitness, aerobic capacity is an important parameter that measures the ability of the cardiovascular system to supply oxygen to the muscles during physical activity. A high aerobic capacity is associated with better endurance, improved cognitive function, and reduced risk of chronic diseases such as diabetes, hypertension, and heart disease.

While many people may think that they need to spend a lot of money on gym memberships or expensive equipment to improve their aerobic capacity, there are many simple and effective exercises that can be done at home for free. In this blog post, we’ll explore some of the best free workouts for aerobic capacity that you can start doing today.

1. Running or jogging

Running is one of the best exercises for improving aerobic capacity. It’s free, can be done anywhere, and requires no equipment other than a good pair of shoes. Start with a few minutes of jogging and gradually increase your time and distance over a few weeks. Remember to warm up before you start and cool down at the end of each session.

2. Jumping jacks

Jumping jacks are a classic aerobic exercise that can be done anywhere and requires no equipment. They work out the whole body, including the heart and lungs, and are great for improving cardiovascular fitness. Start with a few sets of 10-20 jumping jacks and gradually increase your repetitions as you get more comfortable.

3. Dancing

Dancing is a fun and effective way to improve aerobic capacity. It can be done at home, in a dance class, or at a party. Dancing is a full-body workout that requires coordination, balance, and stamina. It’s a great way to get your heart rate up and burn calories while having fun.

4. Cycling

Cycling is a great low-impact exercise that can be done indoors or outdoors. You can use a stationary bike or a regular bike and cycle at your own pace. Cycling is a great way to improve aerobic capacity, build leg muscles, and improve overall fitness.

5. Stair climbing

Stair climbing is a simple yet effective exercise that can be done at home, in the office, or anywhere with a set of stairs. It works out the leg muscles, increases heart rate, and improves cardiovascular fitness. Start with a few sets of climbing up and down the stairs and gradually increase the number of repetitions as you get more comfortable.

In conclusion, improving aerobic capacity is crucial for maintaining good physical health. The above exercises are simple, effective, and free ways to improve your aerobic capacity. Incorporate these exercises into your daily routine, and you’ll soon see an improvement in your endurance, energy levels, and overall health. Remember to start slowly and gradually increase the intensity and duration of your workouts. Also, remember to stay hydrated and take breaks when necessary. With consistent effort and determination, you can improve your aerobic capacity and live a healthier life.

Listen: iTunes | Spotify
Olympic Lifting VS Loaded Jumps and Throws Whats Better for Power DevelopmentCategoriesPLP Podcast Weekly Updates

Episode 73 – Olympic Lifting VS Loaded Jumps and Throws: What’s Better for Power Development

Highlights of the episode:

  • Sport Demands
  • Environment Constraint
  • Athletes Profile
  • Podcast recommendation ft. Marketing Millenials
Listen: iTunes | Spotify

Power development is an essential aspect of athletic training as it allows athletes to generate maximal force in a minimal amount of time. The ability to generate explosive power is especially critical in sports that require rapid movements, such as basketball, football, and track and field events. Two popular methods used to develop power in athletes are Olympic lifting and loaded jumps and throws. In this blog post, we will compare and contrast these two methods to determine which is the most effective for power development in athletes.

Olympic Lifting:

Olympic lifting consists of two primary lifts: the snatch and the clean and jerk. These lifts are designed to develop explosive power, speed, and strength in athletes. The snatch involves lifting a barbell from the floor to overhead in one continuous movement, while the clean and jerk involves lifting the barbell to the shoulders before pressing it overhead. Both lifts require the athlete to generate maximal force in a minimal amount of time.

One of the primary benefits of Olympic lifting is its ability to improve overall strength and power. These lifts require the use of multiple muscle groups, including the legs, back, shoulders, and arms. As a result, they are incredibly effective at developing full-body power and strength.

Another benefit of Olympic lifting is its specificity to certain sports. For example, Olympic lifting movements mimic the jumping and explosive movements required in sports such as basketball, football, and track and field events. As a result, athletes in these sports can benefit significantly from incorporating Olympic lifting into their training programs.

However, Olympic lifting does come with some potential drawbacks. Firstly, the lifts require a high level of skill and technique to perform correctly. Without proper coaching and instruction, athletes may be at risk of injury or not achieve the desired results. Additionally, the lifts can be very taxing on the body, especially when performed with heavy weights. This can increase the risk of injury and overtraining.

Loaded Jumps and Throws:

Loaded jumps and throws involve the use of weighted implements, such as medicine balls, dumbbells, or kettlebells, to generate explosive power. These exercises involve movements that require athletes to jump or throw with added resistance, which can help to develop maximal force in a minimal amount of time.

One of the primary benefits of loaded jumps and throws is their versatility. These exercises can be performed with a wide range of equipment and can be adapted to suit the specific needs of individual athletes. Additionally, they are relatively simple to perform, making them accessible to athletes of all skill levels.

Another benefit of loaded jumps and throws is their ability to develop functional power. These exercises involve movements that mimic those required in many sports, such as jumping, throwing, and sprinting. As a result, they are particularly effective at improving athletic performance in these areas.

However, loaded jumps and throws also come with some potential drawbacks. Firstly, these exercises can be challenging to perform correctly, particularly when performed with heavier weights. Without proper coaching and instruction, athletes may be at risk of injury or not achieve the desired results. Additionally, these exercises can be taxing on the body, particularly when performed at high volumes. This can increase the risk of overtraining and injury.


When comparing Olympic lifting and loaded jumps and throws, there are several key factors to consider. These include their effectiveness at developing power, their specificity to certain sports, their complexity, and their potential for injury.

In terms of effectiveness at developing power, both methods have been shown to be effective. However, Olympic lifting has been more extensively studied and has been shown to be particularly effective at improving explosive power and overall strength.

In terms of specificity to certain sports, Olympic lifting has a clear advantage. These lifts mimic the explosive movements required in many sports, making them an excellent choice for athletes in these sports. However, loaded jumps and throws can also be adapted to suit

Screenshot 2023 04 10 at 9.03.19 pmCategoriesPLP Podcast Weekly Updates

Episode 72 – The Science Behind Strength and Conditioning for AFL

Highlights of the episode:

  • Work – tracking distance using GPS
  • Response to work using questionnaire and HRV measurements
  • Tracking athlete performance
  • Exercise Selection episode from Blood Flow Restriction podcast
Listen: iTunes | Spotify

The Science Behind Physical Preparation for AFL

• Strength and Conditioning for AFL is used to enhance the physical conditioning of Australian Football League (AFL) athletes, helping them develop strength, power, endurance, and agility.
• It is important for coaches to understand the scientific principles behind its application and how those principles apply specifically to AFL training.
• Technology such as GPS, wellness questionnaires, and HRV (Heart Rate Variability) measurements can track athlete performance in order to create effective Strength and Conditioning programs tailored to each individual athlete.
• For successful Strength and Conditioning programs for AFL players, coaches must have a strong foundation in sport science.

Strength and Conditioning for AFL is a discipline that combines sports science and high performance to improve the physical conditioning of Australian Football League (AFL) athletes. It is an important part of enhancing an athlete’s potential on the field, as it helps them develop strength, power, endurance, and agility.

To ensure successful Strength and Conditioning programs are designed for AFL players, the science behind their design must be understood. This includes tracking distance run for high speed and volume using GPS technology, measuring response to work using wellness questionnaires or HRV (Heart Rate Variability) measurements, and tracking athlete game day performance through data collection sessions.

Strength and Conditioning coaches must also understand how to apply sport science principles to enable athletes to reach their peak physical performance safely and effectively. By utilizing sports science, coaches can ensure that the right conditioning program is implemented for each individual athlete in order to maximize their performance on the field.

Strength and Conditioning programs designed for AFL players must be specific to the demands of this high-level sport. Therefore, Strength and Conditioning coaches must have a deep understanding of both the scientific principles behind its application as well as how it applies specifically to AFL training. With this knowledge, coaches can create effective conditioning programs that will help AFL athletes achieve their athletic goals.

The effectiveness of Strength and Conditioning for AFL relies heavily on its scientific basis – making sure that coaches have a solid foundation in sport science when developing these programs is essential for optimal performance. By applying the science of Strength and Conditioning to AFL, coaches can create successful conditioning programs that will help athletes reach their peak physical potential in a safe and efficient manner.

What You Really Need to Know as a Strength Conditioning Coach 1CategoriesBlog

What You Really Need to Know as a Strength & Conditioning Coach | Prepare Like a Pro

As a strength and conditioning coach, you have the critical task of helping athletes reach their potential. You work with them to improve their athleticism and help them stay healthy and injury-free. But there is so much more to being a successful strength & conditioning coach than just knowing how to train athletes! This blog post will discuss some of the most important things you need to know to succeed in this field. 

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What You Really Need to Know as a Strength Conditioning Coach

What Is the Role of a Strength and Conditioning Coach in Sports Today?

In recent years, the role of the strength and conditioning coach has come to the fore in the world of competitive sports. These coaches are responsible for developing and implementing training programs that improve athletes’ strength, power, speed, and endurance. In many cases, they also serve as sports scientists and injury prevention specialists. As such, they play a vital role in helping athletes to reach their full potential.

With the increasing popularity of elite strength training programs, more and more athletes are hiring personal coaches to work with them one-on-one. This trend is especially prevalent among professional and elite-level athletes with the resources to invest in such services. However, even amateur athletes can benefit from working with a strength and conditioning coach.

There is no doubt that the role of the strength and conditioning coach has become more critical in recent years, especially in tandem with AFL coaching. As athletes strive to achieve ever-higher levels of performance, these coaches play an essential role in helping them to reach their goals.

What Are the Key Responsibilities of a Strength and Conditioning Coach When Working With Athletes or Teams? 

The coach must know the athletes’ on a personal level to better understand their individual goals and needs to tailor the training program accordingly.  

Another critical responsibility of the strength and conditioning coach is to monitor the athletes’ training load using objective data from GPS and force plates and adjust the training program as necessary. This requires constant communication with the athletes and close observation of their performance in the gym on the field and in competition.

In addition to developing and implementing training programs, strength and conditioning coaches often work closely with other sports medicine team members, such as doctors, physiotherapists, dietitians, and psychologists. Of course, they also must collaborate with the AFL coaches to help structure training and support for the players.  

What Qualifications Are Necessary to Become a Strength and Conditioning Coach?

Most strength and conditioning coaches have at least a bachelor’s degree in exercise science or a related field. Many also have master’s degrees or doctorates. In addition, most coaches are certified by one or more major strength and conditioning organizations, such as the Australian Strength and Conditioning Association. 

To be successful in this field, it is essential to have a strong understanding of human anatomy and physiology, exercise science, and biomechanics. Being familiar with the latest strength and energy system development methods is essential. Furthermore, effective coaches must possess excellent communication and interpersonal skills.




What Traits Are Necessary For a Strength and Conditioning Coach To Be Successful?

Here’s a look at some of them:

1) Awareness

A successful strength and conditioning coach must know the latest research and developments in the field. They must also be mindful of the individual needs of their athletes and clients and how to meet those needs best. 

In addition, successful coaches must be aware of their strengths and weaknesses, and how to use those to their advantage. Awareness is, therefore, an essential trait for any coach who wants to be successful in the strength and conditioning field.  

By being aware of the latest research and developments, they can ensure that their athletes are constantly training with the most up-to-date methods. Similarly, by being aware of their strengths and weaknesses, they can use that knowledge to design programs tailored specifically to their athletes.  

Ultimately, awareness allows a strength and conditioning coach to succeed. Without it, they would be operating in the dark, and their athletes would not be able to reach their full potential.

2) Effective Communicator

Successful strength and conditioning coaches must communicate effectively with their athletes. This includes being able to give clear instructions and providing feedback that is both constructive and motivating. 

Furthermore, the coach must create a rapport with their athletes to gain their trust and respect. Only then will the athletes be genuinely invested in following the coach’s program and be willing to put in the hard work required to see results. 

Good communication skills are essential for any coach but vital for those working in the field of strength and conditioning.

3) Adaptability

A successful strength and conditioning coach must be able to adapt their approach to fit the needs of each athlete. No two athletes are exactly alike, and what works for one may not work for another. A good coach can tailor their methods to each athlete’s unique strengths and weaknesses, helping them reach their full potential. 

In addition, a successful coach must be able to adapt to the ever-changing landscape of sports. New research and technology are constantly emerging, and a good coach is always learning and growing, ensuring their athletes are always at the cutting edge of performance. Without adaptability, a coach will quickly become outdated and ineffective. 

4) Accountability and Ownership

As any successful strength and conditioning coach will tell you, accountability and ownership are two essential traits. A coach must be accountable for their athletes’ well-being and training results. They must also be willing to take ownership of their decisions and actions, both good and bad. Without these qualities, it is difficult to maintain the trust and respect of those you are coaching.

As a strength and conditioning coach, you are responsible for the safety and well-being of your athletes. This means that you must always be on the lookout for potential injuries and take steps to prevent them from occurring. You must also be willing to adjust your workouts and training plans based on the needs of your athletes. If an athlete is not progressing as expected, it is up to you to find out why and make the necessary changes.

Similarly, as a coach, you must be willing to accept responsibility for your actions and decisions. If something goes wrong, it is up to you to take responsibility and fix it. This can be difficult, but it is essential to maintain the trust and respect of those you are coaching. 

What Challenges Do Strength and Conditioning Coaches Face Daily?

While there are many challenges that strength and conditioning coaches face daily, some of the most common include:

Time Management

A coach’s time is a precious commodity. There are only so many hours in the day, and a coach must carefully allocate his or her time to succeed. This can be challenging, especially for Melbourne strength & conditioning coaches, who have many responsibilities. In addition to leading workouts and overseeing training programs, they must meet with athletes to discuss progress, plan out future workouts, and attend team meetings. 

All of this must be done while maintaining a positive relationship with athletes and keeping up with the latest research. Strength and conditioning coaches must be skilled in time management to be successful. They must be able to prioritize their tasks and make the most of every minute.

Budget Constraints

One of the challenges strength and conditioning coaches face is budget constraints. With limited resources, purchasing the necessary equipment and creating an effective training program can be difficult. Additionally, strength and conditioning coaches often have to compete with other sports teams for funding. As a result, they must be creative in their approach to training and be able to make do with what they have. 

While budget constraints can be a challenge, they can also be an opportunity for strength and conditioning coaches to showcase their resourcefulness and creativity. They can still produce great results by thinking outside the box despite limited resources.

Working with Multiple Teams

Working with multiple teams can be a challenge for strength and conditioning coaches. First, it can be difficult to juggle the schedules of various teams. With regards to AFL/AFLW fitness coaching, each team has its practice schedule, game schedule, and travel schedule, and it can be challenging to keep track of them. 

In addition, each team has its own unique needs and goals, and it can be difficult to tailor workouts to all of them. Finally, working with multiple teams can be emotionally taxing. Strength and conditioning coaches often form close bonds with their athletes, and it can be tough to say goodbye to one team when another season starts. 


While there are many challenges that strength and conditioning coaches face, they are also rewarded with great satisfaction. They see the athletes they work with improve and reach their goals. They also form close bonds with their athletes and see them grow physically and mentally. Despite the challenges, being a strength and conditioning coach can be a very rewarding experience.

Do you have what it takes to be a strength and conditioning coach? If you are passionate about helping others reach their potential and are willing to face challenges, the answer is yes! So, what are you waiting for? Start your journey on our coaches academy today by clicking this link

If you are an AFL player who aspires to reach new heights, contact Prepare Like A Pro, where we provide the best AFL strength and conditioning coaching and programs. Prepare Like A Pro’s program helps develop footballers with difficulties in improving their athleticism by teaching them sustainable lifestyle tips with a personalized program. 


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Works Cited

  • Favre, M. (n.d.). Retrieved from https://www.nsca.com/education/articles/career-articles/becoming-a-strength-and-conditioning-coach/
  • Friedman, A. (n.d.). Top 6 Qualities of a Successful Strength and Conditioning Coach. Retrieved from https://www.du.edu/sport-sense/news/top-6-qualities-successful-strength-and-conditioning-coach

How to Train Specifically for Your PositionCategoriesBlog Training Program

How to train like an AFL Elite Midfielder | Prep Like A Pro

How to Train Specifically for Your Position
How to Train Specifically for Your Position


The AFL elite male midfielder position demand can change due to many factors such as dimensions of the ground, rotations, weather, and even if the player is playing inside or outside midfield position.

However, there are similarities amongst this playing position, especially when compared to other position game profiles like a key forward and or defender. (13)

This sports profile will dive into detail about the recent changes in demand for an elite midfielder playing in the Australian Football League (AFL) over the last decade.

Due to the dynamic nature of the midfielder’s position and the sport itself, this report will look at four key areas of performance for a midfielder. These four key areas are Physical, mental, tactical, and technical, leaning on the most up-to-date research to back our claims and ultimately provide insight into how to optimally prepare a midfielder for high performance!


 Competition requirements


Aerobic capacity

Repeat acceleration

Individualised approach

The AFL game is certainly getting faster and players particularly midfielders are required to cover the further distance in the same amount of game time.

This article will take a closer look at recent scientific research conducted on AFL players and look closely at the physical, mental, technical, and tactical key performance indicators for midfielders.

Part of this is the fact that AFL midfielders are playing on after a mark a lot more regularly during a game. Due to the demand for the game to ‘flow’ better and allow for more scoring rule changes like less time taken for umpires to restart play or take a shot for a goal. Reducing the rest periods for the players and increasing the demand for midfielders to set up at a stoppage in less time, all while reducing the total rotations allowed by the team.

Compared to other positions on the field midfielders covered on average cover more total distance (4) and still, produce a high amount of high-intensity efforts 2nd only mobile forwards (10)

Midfielders’ aerobic capacity and repeat accelerations are critical for midfielders to be able to handle the high volume of total distance and repeat high-intensity efforts. The current research suggests programming high-intensity aerobic interval training to improve aerobic power, match running performance, and greater involvement in the play. (12)

Midfielders’ ability to recover between games is crucial to preventing injuries while ensuring players are recovering appropriately. Varying the load from week to week as is recommended from a team perspective is important, we also need to factor in each athlete’s profile. (12)

Fitness testing ie 2km time trial and repeat sprint test we can identify which of the squad midfielders are aerobic and which are anaerobic dominant. With this information in mind, we may look to adjust the training load by reducing the total volume run for the aerobic midfielders and look to maintain or increase running volumes for the aerobic-based midfielders.

This graph represents the effect fatigue has on the players as the quarter goes on from the start to the 10-minute mark players start to reduce their work rate.  On average the midfielders and the mobile forwards ran the furthest for total distance and high-speed running.

Research like this one gives us confidence that improving a midfielder’s running capacity in a traditional conditioning manner in conjunction with specific football drills like small, sided games will increase the likelihood of increasing the player’s ability to express repeat high-intensity efforts in a game for longer. (10) Potentially giving the team a winning advantage over the competition.



Mental health

Psychological reactions to injury

Team behaviour can influence the tactical, technical, and physical side of performance. The key focus of Sam J Robertson’s research: Collective team behaviour of Australian rules football during a phase of math play investigated the difference in team behaviour with regards to possession and location on the field. (13)

Mental health which unfortunately is growing in its effect on AFL players and therefore key management practices from sports doctors at AFL clubs are critical. (14) Thirdly looking into the psychology of AFL players with regards to the reaction to injury. (15)

Although the sample size is small for the team behaviour article the findings were interesting, utilizing notational analysis methods to assess the effects players were positioning themselves during different stages of play. Clear differences were recorded with regards to length, width, and surface area were all typically greater during offense when compared to defense and contested phases. Team B pattern of greater values of length, width, and surface area during all phases of play when compared to team A. (13) Creating this extra space from an offensive point of view may be to help clear space for the forwards, from a physical point of view this style of play may increase the high-intensity efforts of the midfielders through creating space and being able to get back if the ball was in the contest as reported in this study both teams would aim to close space during contested situations.

AFL like many high-performance sporting codes have many mental health issues and the key to good management is the primary care providers the sports doctors. (14) This research conducted a questionnaire of best practices from experienced AFL sports doctors (96%) with 39% having worked for more than 10 years.

The findings fell within nine domains, 1. Prevention and mental health promotion activities 2. Screening and Risk identification 3. Engaging external specialists 4. Duty of care 5. Assessment, treatment, and case coordination 6. Communication 7. Confidentiality 8. Sleep management 9. Substance use management

A key takeaway is to ensure the club has an experienced sports doctor to look out for the players with best practices in conjunction with a multidisciplinary team to ensure the whole club approach to optimise prevention, identification, and treatment to manage players mental health. (14)

How do AFL athletes respond to injury?

For all those involved with working with AFL players understanding this concept is critical to the mental health of players. The results found in this study showcase how important it is to support AFL players going through rehabilitation.  A Player’s response tends to depend on the severity of the injury if its short term it can fall under the normality of injury as ‘all part of the game’, however, long term and stress can be high due to losing connection with their teammates, contract’s expiring, and not returning in the same physical shape. (15)

AFL players reported fluctuations of negative emotions during a longer-term injury such as shock, anger, disappointment, and the sense of feeling flat. Common for players to experience fear of missing out on games, and team structure resulting in feeling anxious, depressed, and moody.

A key takeaway is how often players reported feeling unfit and ‘rusty’ with their ball skills when returning to training and games.

The practical implementation of this is the importance of including cross-training, and plenty of touches either with a skills coach or another rehab player to ensure the midfield-specific skills were incorporated while the player was in rehabilitation to improve self-efficacy. Encouraging maintaining coach connection with the player is key to preventing players from feeling isolated, perhaps using video footage of a player’s high light reel, and mentioning a positive performance post an injury would be helpful in also building players’ confidence and feeling connected to the club. Furthermore, during the early stages of rehab, it’s important for medical and staff to incorporate plenty of variation to prevent boredom and for players to be involved in team activities wherever possible. (15)


Field location

Passages of play for offense play

A longitudinal systematic review looked at the average physical output changes in AFL players from 2005 to 2017 and found rule changes and game style to be the most significant influence on the match demands of AFL players. (1)

What does this specifically mean for AFL midfielders? How does the game style have an effect? Well, the research shows AFL midfielders are required to work the hardest during offensive plays, compared to defensive and contested phases. (10)

This finding is consistent with the research on positional demands and field location found. (12) When team a team intercepts the ball, it is more likely that the opposition will not have their defensive zone structure in place. Allows for a greater opportunity to score and hence why midfielders get rewarded when they work hard during these passages of play. Key takeaway the ability of midfielders to work hard when the ball is turned the ball is key to team success due to the increased probability of a clearer path to goals. (3)


Effective Kicking

Ball in play

Effective Handball

While work rate is important for team success, effective technical actions are most important. (6)


Successful offensive plays resulting in a shot on goal appeared to be dependent on both physical output and technical skills. (5) As the table 2 when a team with high short kicking effectiveness on average win more quarters by a larger amount.

Table 4 shows how important handballing skills are for midfielders ranking the highest percentage of key position players

Players are likely to have increased workload and decreased skill proficiency when their team is less successful. (3) Having a program that focuses on developing kicking effectiveness is critical for team success.

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How to Train Like an AFL Midfielder
How to Train Like an AFL Midfielder