caffeine on game dayCategoriesBlog Elite Lifestyle Get Better Plan Psych/Nutrition Training Program

The best tips to use caffeine on game day!

Coffee is a staple for athletes all over the world, including AFL players, whether it’s for regular footy training or a crucial AFL game day. Caffeine is a stimulant and can help you feel more energised and alert, which can be helpful before a big game. Read on as we discuss the effect of caffeine on athletes and tips on how to use it on a game day.

Caffeine for Athletes’ Performance

Caffeine is one of the most well-studied ergogenic aids (substances, equipment, or practices that help people use, produce, or recover more energy) and is known to help athletes exercise harder and longer. Caffeine stimulates the brain, making it easier to think clearly and concentrate.

Caffeine has been studied for both stamina and short-term, high-intensity exercise in over 74 research studies. Caffeine enhances performance and makes the effort appear easy, according to the vast majority of research (by about six percent).

The average boost in performance is about 12%, with greater benefits seen during endurance exercise than shorter exercise (eight to twenty minutes) and a negligible amount for sprinters. Athletes who rarely consume coffee and hence are not tolerant of its stimulating effect reap even more benefits.

Don’t assume that a caffeine boost would improve your performance because everyone reacts to caffeine differently. You may become queasy, experience “coffee stomach,” or experience caffeine jitters at a time when you are already nervous and concerned.

And so, how much coffee should an athlete consume to get that edge? 250 mg of caffeine per day is considered moderate. The amount of caffeine that improves performance in research studies ranges from 1.5 to 4 mg/lb body weight (3 to 9 mg/kg) given one hour before exercise. This equates to around 225 to 600 milligrams for a 150-pound person. It does not appear that more is better.

The majority of athletes receive their caffeine from coffee; others use caffeinated gels, Red Bull, or NoDoz tablets. Some sportsmen prefer products with specific doses because the quantity of caffeine in coffee varies so much. 

If you are unsure how much you should ingest, it’s best to consult a sports doctor or sports dietitian. They should have the most up-to-date information on what is an appropriate dosage for you as an individual.

Tips for Athletes on Drinking Coffee During Game Day

Coffee is great for a quick pick-me-up but it’s important to know how your body will react. Here are some useful tips that you can use with regard to consuming caffeine during the game day:

1) Drink Coffee an Hour or Two Before the Game

Many people swear by coffee as a pre-game energy boost, and there is some science to back up this claim. Caffeine is a powerful stimulant that can improve focus and reaction time. However, it is important to note that everyone reacts to caffeine differently. Some people may find that coffee makes them jittery or anxious, while others may feel more alert and focused. 

It is also important to remember that coffee takes about an hour to kick in, so it is best to drink it an hour or two before the game. This way, you can see how it affects you and make sure it doesn’t interfere with your performance. Ultimately, whether or not you choose to drink coffee before a game is a personal decision. But if you do decide to give it a try, make sure you do so with caution and be mindful of how it affects you.

2) Have a Small Cup (250ML) Of Black Coffee 

Coffee is a popular beverage for many people, especially in the morning. It can help to wake you up and give you a boost of energy. However, too much milk and sugar in your coffee can actually make you feel more sluggish. When you’re trying to get energized for a game, it’s best to stick to black coffee. 

The caffeine will help to give you a boost without weighing you down. In addition, black coffee is also calorie-free, so you won’t have to worry about adding any extra calories to your diet. So next time you’re gearing up for a big game, ditch the milk and sugar and reach for a small cup of black coffee instead. 

3) Avoid Drinking Coffee on an Empty Stomach

It’s no secret that coffee can give you an energy boost. That’s why many people enjoy drinking a cup of coffee first thing in the morning. However, if you drink coffee on an empty stomach, it can actually cause an upset stomach during the game. The acids in coffee can irritate the lining of your stomach, leading to cramps, nausea, and diarrhea.

If you’re feeling especially sensitive, you might even experience vomiting. So, if you’re planning on consuming coffee before a big game, be sure to eat something first. A light snack or meal will help to buffer the acids in your coffee and reduce the risk of stomach problems.

4) Add Honey to Your Coffee

If you’re feeling tired, there’s no need to reach for a can of energy drink or a cup of coffee loaded with sugar. Instead, try a small cup of coffee with one teaspoon of honey. The honey will help to boost your energy levels, and the coffee will improve your focus and alertness.

Plus, the combination of the two ingredients will taste great and give you the perfect pick-me-up when you need it most. So next time you’re feeling fatigued, reach for a cup of coffee and a spoonful of honey instead your body will thank you for it.

5) Drink Plenty of Water Throughout the Day To Stay Hydrated

The big game has finally arrived and you’re nursing a red bull, thinking to yourself that this can be the edge that will push you and your team to victory. However, what you may not realize is that coffee can actually lead to dehydration.

That’s why it’s important to drink plenty of water throughout the day, especially if you’re drinking coffee. Water helps to replenish the fluids in your body, and it’s essential for maintaining proper body function. So if you’re going to drink coffee on game day, make sure to also drink plenty of water to stay hydrated. Your body will thank you for it.

Final Thoughts

Caffeine can be a great way to improve your performance on game day. Just remember to consume it in moderation and be aware of how it affects you. And don’t forget to stay hydrated by drinking plenty of water throughout the day. With these tips in mind, you’re sure to have a successful game day! 

If you need help getting that edge over your opponents, contact the AFL strength and conditioning coaches at Prepare Like A Pro. We can help you optimize your training regimen to help you achieve your goals. Contact us today to get started!

References:

https://blog.bridgeathletic.com/caffeine-athletic-performance
https://www.active.com/articles/the-facts-about-caffeine-and-athletic-performance
https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/caffeine-and-exercise
https://www.soccertoday.com/soccer-players-the-scoop-on-caffeine/

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Harry SheezelCategoriesBlog Elite Lifestyle Players Training Program

Prepare Like a Pro Melbourne based Ambassador – Harry Sheezel

Considered to be one of the more naturally-talented footballers in the 2022 AFL draft, Harry Sheezel is a name that will be well-known to most footy fans by the end of the season. The 18-year-old from Melbourne has already shown he has what it takes to compete at the top level, having been named in the 2022 NAB AFL Academy – Australia U18 Team that took on Collingwood’s VFL team last month.

 Sheezel is a powerful and athletic midfielder who is capable of playing both inside and outside. He has good speed and agility and is known for his hard work and determination. Sheezel is also a very good kick, which will no doubt be a valuable asset at the next level.

Sheezel is expected to be one of the first players—a surefire 10 draft pick—taken in the 2022 AFL draft, and he will no doubt be a big part of whatever team he ends up playing for. It will be exciting to see what he can do at the highest level, and footy fans should keep an eye on this young star in the making.

He is a full-time member of the Sandringham Dragons, and has made the most of his opportunity this season. Sheezel has set his claim as a rotating midfielder and has significant upside as a player who can win matches with his own boot after scoring 14 goals in six games, including bags of four and six goals.

Sheezel’s goal-kicking ability is well-known at this point, as seen by the aforementioned NAB League statistics. The deft medium type was also a standout in his lone Vic Metro appearance against the Young Guns, where he was thrust into the AFL Academy’s midfield late in the game on a day when his team’s forwards struggled. If his 28 disposals and six goals against Tasmania were a breakthrough game, his 37 touches against Northern in Round 9 served as the ideal audition for a permanent midfielder spot.

An Inspiration to the Jewish Community

Sheezel was only 16 when he experienced playing at the senior level, suiting up for his club Ajax in Victoria’s amateurs’ tournament last year. He earned the right, having emerged from the juniors program as the clear-cut best and brightest. During his debut, he kicked four goals from full-forward against Fitzroy at Brunswick Street Oval, including one goal that he described as “pretty good”.

“I had a bit of a day out,” Sheezel said in an article on AFL.com.au. “Playing juniors with Ajax was massive my whole life and it was so much fun to play with people from the community in the senior side as well.”

It was also during that time when Sheezel began feeling an immense outpouring of support for his football journey from the Jewish community. It also helped a great deal that Ajax is based in Melbourne’s inner south-eastern suburbs and is the country’s only Jewish football club.

With Jewish representation in the AFL historically low, Sheezel figures to be a role model for aspiring Jewish footballers not just in Melbourne, but also around the country. He is an AFL player of the future that the community can rally behind and one that could potentially inspire the next generation of Jewish footballers. To date, only Todd Goldstein (North Melbourne), Ezra Poyas (Richmond and Melbourne), and Julian Kirzner (Essendon, Carlton, and North Melbourne) have made it to the big stage of the AFL.

“There haven’t been as many Jewish footballers lately to make it into the AFL, so it’s kind of special to hopefully be the first one [drafted] in a while. Everyone has been so supportive and living it with me, in a sense,” Sheezel said.

“I hope to be pretty inspiring for younger kids as well because I feel like the Jewish community is really into the sport as well, they love their footy, so hopefully I can inspire a few more kids to hopefully go down the same path. 

 

 

“Along the way you see how much it means to people in the community. I never really thought of it until I’ve started to be in the media a little bit more and everyone is all over it now. It’s pretty cool. And at school it’s kind of new for them, they don’t really know how to act and neither do I so I just embrace it.”

Shezeel currently attends Mount Scopus—one of Australia’s foremost Jewish schools. It was there where he really got to learn more about his culture and faith, something that he is extremely proud of. Being at Mount Scopus has also given Sheezel the opportunity to focus on playing for the Dragons in the NAB League.

Sheezel has already shown that he is more than capable of shouldering the responsibility that comes with being a potential AFL footballer and an inspiration to the Jewish community. With his undeniable talent and character, there is no doubt that Harry Sheezel has what it takes to be a successful AFL player. All that’s left now is for him to take that next step and fulfill his dream.

“There’s still a long way to go and a lot of important games to be played. I don’t want to look too far ahead and just focus on each game and each month at a time, because the last two years have shown us that you just have to be present and do the best you can when you play because the next week and the future aren’t guaranteed,” Sheezel said.

“But I think about the draft every second. My life is oriented around it and footy. Everything I do I try to better myself to put myself in the best position I can.”

Sheezel is also one of the ambassadors of Prepare Like A Pro, an organization that helps young footballers with difficulties improve their athleticism, by teaching them sustainable lifestyle tips with a personalized program.

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The Latest Research on Ice Bath Recovery Methods and Its Connection to FootyCategoriesBlog Elite Lifestyle Get Better Plan Training Program

The Latest Research on Ice Bath Recovery Methods and Its Connection to Footy

Ice baths are a popular way for athletes to recover after a strenuous workout, but there has been some debate about whether or not they are effective. A new study has shed some light on the matter and found that ice baths do have benefits for footballers. In this blog post, we will take a look at the latest research on ice baths, what AFL strength and conditioning coaches think about it, and what footballers should do to get the most out of them.

 What is an Ice Bath?

An ice bath is when you immerse your body in a tub of cold water and ice. The frigid temperatures help to reduce inflammation and pain, and can also speed up the healing process. Many athletes use ice baths after workouts or competitions, but they can be beneficial for anyone who is dealing with an injury or sore muscles. While the idea of an ice bath may sound daunting, the key is to start slowly and gradually work your way up to colder temperatures. You should also limit your time in the tub to no more than 20 minutes, as staying in for too long can actually lead to further inflammation. With a little preparation, an ice bath can be a powerful tool for managing pain and promoting healing. Strength and conditioning coaches across Australia endorse this recovery method and use it regularly with their athletes.

What is the Theory That Supports the Ice Bath Recovery Method?

The reasoning behind ice baths is that high-intensity exercise creates microtrauma or microscopic tears in the muscle fibers. This microscopic muscle injury is really a purpose of exercise because it promotes muscle cell activity, which aids in muscle healing and strengthening (muscle hypertrophy). However, it has been linked to DOMS (delayed onset muscular discomfort and soreness), which occurs 24 to 72 hours after exercise.

It is thought that the ice bath would:

  • Constrict blood vessels and drain waste items out of the damaged tissues, such as lactic acid.
  • Slow down physiological processes by lowering metabolic activity.
  • Swelling and tissue disintegration are reduced.

The enhanced blood flow from rewarming is thought to speed up circulation and, as a result, accelerate the healing process.

 What Does Research Say About This Particular Recovery Method?

The majority of research on the effects of ice baths and cold water immersion on exercise recovery and muscular soreness has come up with ambiguous or inconsistent results. Read on to find out what studies have come up with so far:

  • According to studies, icing muscles after a high-intensity workout reduces inflammation, slows muscle fiber growth, and delays muscle regeneration. This would be especially bad for athletes who are striving to bulk up their muscles.
  • When compared to rest or no intervention, a Cochrane review of 17 studies found some evidence that cold-water immersion reduced delayed onset muscle soreness. There was insufficient evidence to say if it helped deal with tiredness or recovery. Running studies revealed the most benefits. All of the studies were of poor quality, with no threshold for adverse effects and no active follow-up with participants.
  • An analysis of 13 research found a modest indication that contrast water therapy was better than passive recovery or rest at minimizing exercise-induced muscle soreness recovery, but the difference was minor. Contrast water treatment, cold water immersion, active recovery, compression, and stretching had little effect on muscular discomfort.

What are the Best Recovery Methods for AFL Players?

Now that we know a little bit more about the theory and research around ice baths, what other recovery options should AFL players consider for the best recovery from their workouts? The following methods have been shown to be most beneficial for muscle soreness and inflammation. These methods have been utilized by strength and conditioning coaches in Melbourne for their athletes. Check them out:

1) The RICE Method 

RICE is commonly used during the acute injury phase, it’s an acronym in the world of sports medicine. It stands for rest, ice, compression, and elevation. The RICE method is often recommended as a means of treating acute injuries, such as muscle strains or ankle sprains. The theory behind the RICE method is that it will help to reduce swelling and pain while promoting healing. However, there is limited evidence to support the effectiveness of this approach. Some studies have shown that ice may actually delay healing, and elevation has not been shown to have any significant impact on recovery. Despite the lack of scientific evidence, the RICE method remains a popular option for athletes seeking to recover from an injury.

2) Active Recovery

As an AFL athlete or strength and conditioning coach knows, the key to maintaining peak performance is to allow your body adequate time to recover from strenuous activity. Too much exercise without enough rest can lead to fatigue, injury, and a decrease in overall performance. While complete rest is important, recent research has shown that active recovery – low-intensity exercise performed during the recovery period – can actually speed up the recovery process. Active recovery helps to increase blood flow to the muscles, which helps to remove waste products and deliver fresh oxygen and nutrients. In addition, active recovery helps to reduce muscle soreness and improve range of motion. As a result, active recovery can be an effective means of helping athletes recover from strenuous exercise and preventing injuries. 

3) Stretching

No matter how fit you are, athletes will always suffer from some form of muscle soreness, especially after a strenuous workout or competition. While there’s no surefire way to prevent this type of discomfort, stretching can help to loosen tight muscles and promote blood flow, which can speed up the healing process. Additionally, stretching can improve your range of motion, helping you to avoid injuries in the future. For these reasons, it’s important to make stretching part of your post-workout routine. If you’re not sure where to start, there are plenty of resources available online or you can ask a strength and conditioning coach at Prepare Like A Pro to help you get started on the right foot. So don’t forget to stretch – your body will thank you for it! 

4) Yoga

Yoga has been shown to be an effective means of helping athletes recover from injuries. Studies have shown that yoga can help to improve range of motion, flexibility, and strength. In addition, yoga can also help to reduce pain and inflammation. As a result, it is not surprising that many athletes are turning to yoga as a way to speed up their recovery. While there are many different styles of yoga, all of them can be helpful for injury prevention and recovery. For example, Hatha yoga focuses on slow, gentle movements, while Ashtanga yoga is more fast-paced and intense. However, the most important thing is to find a style that works for you and that you enjoy. By incorporating yoga into your training routine, you can help to improve your overall performance and reduce the risk of injury.

Check out our recovery playlist for some how-to videos:

Conclusion

So there you have it – four different methods that can help you to recover from a strenuous workout or competition. Of course, this is not an exhaustive list, and there are many other options available. But these are a great place to start if you’re looking for ways to speed up your recovery. And remember, the most important thing is to listen to your body and tailor your recovery methods to fit your individual needs. So experiment with different methods and find what works best for you.

If you need proper guidance or instructions on how to prepare yourself for the rigors of playing AFL, get in touch with Prepare Like A Pro. We can help you to create a personalized training program that will help you to reach your peak performance.

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How to Train Like an AFL Speed Forwarder DefenderCategoriesBlog Elite Lifestyle Players Training Program

How to Train Like an AFL Speed Forwarder & Defender

An AFL speed forwarder and defender train by doing a variety of exercises that help them improve their speed and agility. One of the most important things for these players is to be able to change direction quickly. This allows them to get around opponents and make tackles which are key performance indicators for speed forwards and defenders. In this blog post, we will discuss how AFL speed forwards & defenders train and look at the exercises that these players do to improve their performance on the field.

What is an AFL Speed Forward?

An AFL speed forward is a player whose primary role on the field is to create space and get down the pitch quickly. This can be done through a variety of different techniques, from using quick cuts and changes of pace to making big, hard-cutting runs. Whatever their method, effective speed forwards are key players in any successful AFL team because they help to open up passing lanes and break down defensive formations.

Due to the demanding nature of their role, speed forwards requires tremendous levels of athleticism and endurance in order to perform at the highest level for an entire game or match. And because the speed forward position requires such a high degree of skill, many teams will seek out young players with a natural flair for moving quickly across the field and making snap decisions in order to cultivate them into top-level athletes. 

What is an AFL Speed Defender?

 

An AFL speed defender is a type of player who excels at intercepting and defusing the opposition’s forward thrusts. Typically, these players are top athletes with superior speed, agility, and coordination. They are experts at reading the play and positioning themselves to cut off offensive drives, catch passes, steal the ball, and disrupt offensive sets.

Because they have such an important role on the field, AFL speed defenders often work closely with their team’s coach to strategize about how to deal with different types of offensive attacks. At the highest levels of competition, AFL speed defenders have to be fast learners and highly adaptable in order to keep up with the ever-changing movements of their opponents. Whether it’s testing new defensive formations or refining their skillset through drills and training sessions, these players never stop working to become better at what they do.

How Do AFL Speed Forwarder & Defender Train?

So how do these players train? For starters, both speed forwards and defenders need to have a base level of fitness to perform at the highest level. This means that they need to be able to run long distances and sprint without tiring. What kind of AFL fitness training should these players be doing?

One of the most important things for speed forwards and defenders is to be able to change direction quickly. This can be done through a variety of different exercises, such as sprints, agility drills, and plyometric exercises. These exercises help to improve the player’s coordination and balance, which are essential for changing direction quickly on the field. 

Plyometric exercises are a type of exercise that helps to improve explosive power. These exercises are often used by athletes who need to generate a lot of force in a short period of time, such as sprinters and jumpers. Some examples of plyometric exercises include box jumps, medicine ball throws, and jump squats. These exercises help to improve the player’s ability to generate force quickly, which is essential for sprinting and making quick changes of direction. 

In addition to plyometric exercises, speed forwards and defenders also need to do a lot of sprint work. This helps them to develop the endurance and leg strength necessary for running long distances at high speeds. Sprinting also helps to improve the player’s coordination and balance. 

Speed forwards and defenders also need to have a strong upper body. This helps them to be able to shrug off tackles, maintain their balance when being pushed around, and generate more force when tackling or jumping. Upper body strength can be developed through a variety of different AFL strength & conditioning exercises, such as weightlifting, push-ups, and pull-ups. 

Finally, speed forwards and defenders need to have good mental toughness. This helps them to deal with the challenges of playing such a demanding position. They need to be able to maintain their focus for long periods of time and make quick decisions under pressure. Many players find that meditation and visualization techniques help them to develop the mental toughness necessary for success on the field.

By following a proper training regimen that impacts the necessary AFL fitness components, speed forwards and defenders can become some of the most dangerous players on the field. They possess a unique combination of speed, agility, strength, and mental toughness that allows them to take over games and make plays that other players simply cannot. If you’re looking to take your game to the next level, then emulating the training regimen of an AFL speed forward or defender is a great place to start. 

Watch our presentation on how a developing speed forward and defender should train to maximise performance: 

Want to take your game to the next level? Then You Must Prepare Like a Pro

Contact us to get started on your journey to becoming an AFL speed forward and defender. Our expert coaches will help you every step of the way with tailored programs and drills that will improve your athleticism and confidence. Whether you are a beginner or an experienced player, we can help you take your game to the next level.

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Sports Psychology for High PerformanceCategoriesBlog Elite Lifestyle Psych/Nutrition Training Program

​​Sports Psychology for High Performance

Do you ever wonder how the top athletes in the world seem to always be at the top of their game? It’s not just natural talent – a large part of their success comes from psychological factors. Sports psychology is the study of how our minds influence our physical performance. In this blog post, we will discuss some of the key concepts in sports psychology and how they can be used to improve your own performance!

What Is Sports Psychology and How Can It Help Athletes Achieve Success?

Sports psychology is a branch of psychology that studies the mental and emotional factors that influence performance in sports. It can be used to help athletes overcome obstacles, such as performance anxiety or a fear of failure. Sports psychologists may also work with coaches to help them better understand their players and develop strategies for maximizing their potential. 

In addition, sports psychologists can provide guidance on nutrition and sleep habits, which are essential for optimal performance. By understanding the mental and emotional factors that affect an athlete’s performance, sports psychologists can help athletes achieve success both on and off the field.

The Benefits of Sports Psychology for Athletes

Sports psychology is a relatively new field that is only now beginning to be fully understood and appreciated by the general public. However, athletes have long been aware of the importance of mental preparation and focus in achieving peak performance. In recent years, sports psychologists have begun to work more closely with athletes to help them overcome psychological barriers and reach their full potential. Here are some benefits that athletes can reap from sports psychology:

Joe Rogan on the importance of sports psychology:

1) Improved Focus and Concentration

It’s no secret that athletes are some of the most focused and dedicated people in the world. After all, their success depends on their ability to maintain their focus and concentration amidst the pressure of competition. However, what is less well-known is that athletes can actually experience improved focus and concentration thanks to sports psychology. By working with a sports psychologist, athletes can learn techniques for managing stress and anxiety, improving their mental game, and remaining focused during competition. As a result, they are better able to utilize their full potential and achieve peak performance. Whether it’s hitting a game-winning shot or crossing the finish line first, athletes who utilize sports psychology often find themselves rising to the occasion when it matters most.

2) Increased Motivation

Athletes are also some of the most motivated people in the world. They are constantly striving to improve their performance and reach new levels of success. However, motivation can sometimes be difficult to maintain, especially when an athlete is dealing with disappointment or setbacks. Sports psychology can help athletes keep their motivation high by teaching them how to set goals, stay positive, and find inspiration in their failures. By working with a sports psychologist, athletes can learn how to maintain their motivation throughout the ups and downs of their careers.

3) Enhanced Performance

Anyone who has ever played a sport knows that there is more to winning than just physical ability. The psychological effects of competition can be just as important as the physical ones. This is where sports psychology comes in. Sports psychologists help athletes to improve their performance by teaching them how to control their thoughts and emotions. They also help athletes to develop mental toughness and to handle pressure. As a result, athletes who work with sports psychologists often find that they are able to take their game to the next level. In addition, sports psychologists can also help athletes to recover from injuries and to cope with disappointment. For many athletes, working with a sports psychologist is an essential part of achieving success.

4) Develop Communication Skills and Cohesion

One of the most important things that athletes can learn from sports psychology is how to communicate effectively. In order to be successful, athletes need to be able to communicate with their teammates and coaches. This means being able to share information and give and receive feedback. Sports psychology can help athletes to develop the communication skills that they need to be successful. In addition, sports psychology can also help to develop cohesion among teammates. By working together, athletes can develop a strong sense of team spirit and camaraderie. This can lead to better performance on the field or court. 

5) Instill a Healthy Belief System

We all have a certain belief system that dictates how we think and act. This belief system is usually based on our previous experiences, and it can have a big impact on our performance in sports. If we believe that we’re not good enough or that we’re going to fail, then it’s very likely that we’ll underperform. On the other hand, if we have a healthy belief system, then we’re more likely to succeed. Sports psychology can help instill a healthy belief system by identifying irrational thoughts and helping us to replace them with more positive ones. In addition, sports psychologists can also help us to develop mental toughness and resilience, which are essential for success in athletics. By understanding and utilizing sports psychology, we can give ourselves a much better chance of achieving our goals.

Ted talk on sports psychology: 

How To Use Sports Psychology Techniques To Improve Your Performance

Whether you’re a professional athlete or just a weekend warrior, sports psychology can help you improve your performance. By learning to control your thoughts and emotions, you can gain a mental edge over your opponents. Here are some techniques that can help you tap into your inner athlete:

  1. Visualization: picturing yourself succeeding can help increase your confidence and improve your performance.
  2. Goal setting: setting specific, achievable goals will help you stay motivated and focused.
  3. Self-talk: positive self-talk can increase your confidence and help you overcome negative thoughts.
  4. Relaxation: learning how to relax both mentally and physically can help reduce stress and improve your focus.

By using these techniques, you can develop the mental toughness needed to perform at your best. So get out there and start achieving your goals!

Listen to our interview with Collingwood football clubs sport psychologist Jacqui Louder:

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Jim Wendler 531 program for footballersCategoriesBlog Elite Lifestyle Training Program

How I Use Jim Wendler 5/3/1 Program for Footballers

Jim Wendler’s 5/3/1 program is a famous program in the fitness world. This program is designed for lifters of all levels and can be tailored to meet the specific needs of each individual. In this blog post, we will discuss how Australian Rules Football players can benefit from using this program.

What is the 5/3/1 Program?

 

The 5/3/1 program is a weightlifting routine that was created by Jim Wendler. The program is designed to help lifters gradually increase their strength and size over time. The program is based on four core lifts: the squat, bench press, deadlift, and overhead press. Each lift is trained once per week, and each workout consists of five sets of three reps. The first set of each lift is performed at 65% of the lifter’s one-rep max, the second set at 75%, the third set at 85%, and the fourth and fifth sets are performed as “cluster sets” of three reps with 90% of the lifter’s one-rep max. The goal of the program is to gradually increase the amount of weight lifted over time, allowing the lifter to continue making progress for an extended period of time.

5/3/1 can be used by athletes of all levels of expertise. However, it is most commonly advised for intermediate athletes. 5/3/1/ may be ideal for you if you’re searching for short training sessions with slow but consistent growth. The creator of this program believes that starting light gives a lifter more room to advance. Because they do the lifts more regularly, brand new lifters are usually able to develop more quickly from a beginner routine. Its long-term training approach can also assist advanced lifters.

Can the 5/3/1 Program Be Adapted for AFL Athletes? 

Coaches frequently inquire about how 5/3/1 might be modified for athletes. Isn’t it a reasonable question? Obviously, the requirements of a performance-oriented athlete differ from those of a person who simply wants to get larger and stronger in general. However, little changes regardless of the sport you’re playing on the field. This is in opposition to “sport-specific training professionals” who try to persuade you that each athlete and sport is unique. But first, let’s look at the facts.

Athletes must have powerful hips, legs, shoulders, arms, and midsections in order to compete in any sport. A fundamental and effective barbell-training program is the greatest method to develop these areas. Weight training for sports is nothing more than General Physical Preparedness, hence there are no “sport-specific” workouts (GPP).

As a result, the goal is to improve these body areas by using the most effective weight-lifting exercises. Athletes must develop skills other than strength, and hence do not have the time to spend hours upon hours in the gym. They shouldn’t, at the very least.

Speed, strength, agility, conditioning, and, most importantly, skill work must all be practiced by an athlete. Spending too much time on one item can lead to problems in other areas. The weight room appears to take up the majority of time in the United States, particularly with football.

If you’re an athlete, you should be able to move around and get into the right positions in the sport, as well as be strong and explosive enough to get out of them.

Basic barbell lifts are the greatest and most efficient techniques to train the full body in any activity. Squats, deadlifts, presses, bench presses, and power cleans are among them. The athlete will develop stronger if they are performed with a full range of motion and proper loading. You’ll have a comprehensive strength-training program if you combine these routines with assistance work.

Watch this video on legendary coach Mike Boyle discussing sports specificity: 

What is Assistance Work?

When it comes to weightlifting, the term “assistance work” refers to exercises that are used to improve the performance of the primary lifts. For example, a powerlifter who is trying to increase their squat might do some heavy deadlifts as assistance work. This is because deadlifts help to build strength and size in the lower body, which can carry over to an increase in squatting ability. Similarly, a weightlifter who is trying to improve their jerk might do some overhead presses as assistance work. This is because overhead presses help to build strength and stability in the shoulders, which can lead to an increase in jerking ability. In general, assistance work should be specific to the needs of the lifter and should be tailored to complement the primary lifts. Used correctly, assistance work can be a powerful tool for improving strength and performance.

Can AFL Players Benefit From the 5/3/1 Program?

Listen to our podcast episode about how we adjust the program to suit footballers.

The answer is a resounding yes! In fact, the program can be of great benefit to any athlete looking to improve strength and performance. The key is to tailor the program to your specific needs and goals. For example, if you’re an AFL player looking to improve your speed and agility, you might want to focus on assistance work that helps to build explosive power, such as sprints and jumps. Alternatively, if you’re an AFL player looking to improve your strength and size, you might want to focus on assistance work that helps to build muscle mass, such as heavy lifting and bodybuilding exercises. 

Jim Wendler’s program is ideal for Australian Rules Footballers because it helps to improve speed, agility, and power. It is also effective for building muscle mass and improving strength. To make the program work for you, focus on assistance work that meets your specific needs and goals. And be sure to consult with a qualified strength and conditioning coach who can design a program that meets your specific needs.

Click here to join our AFL version of the Jim Wendler 5/3/1 program for FREE!

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Top 10 Draft Picks For 2022CategoriesBlog Elite Lifestyle Training Program

Top 10 Draft Picks For 2022

It’s never too early to start thinking about the AFL’s top under 18 talent. After all, the 2022 AFL Draft is upon us. This year’s draft class is shaping up to be an impressive one, with plenty of talented prospects. In this blog post, we will take a look at the best AFL 2022 draft picks who are likely to make their mark this season. These players have all shown tremendous potential and could make a big impact in the AFL. 

Will Ashcroft

The son of triple premiership Lion Marcus, Will Ashcroft is the early favorite for the No. 1 pick in 2022. During Vic Metro’s Under-17 Championships match versus Vic Country, Ashcroft showed he is the entire package with 33 disposals, 20 contested possessions, 12 clearances, nine inside the 50s, and two goals. He not only wins first possession during stoppages, but he also has fast hands, athleticism, and traffic escape. With his kicks to targets inside 50m and the ease with which he can strike, Ashcroft causes havoc for opposing sides.

Jackson Broadbent

Broadbent, who just turned 17 in December, has emerged as the top ruck prospect for the class of 2022 after featuring in three WAFL League games and making an impression in his Western Australia debut against South Australia. Hit-outs are directed to advantage, and Broadbent puts in a lot of effort around the ground. He also has amazing skills. Broadbent is clean at ground level and more than adept while marking overhead.

Jedd Busslinger

Busslinger is one of the most talented key defenders in the class of 2022. He is a superb interceptor who makes excellent use of his early read of the ball in flight. He attacks the ball from the air and has uncanny dexterity when it comes to picking the ball out of the air. When he has the ball in his hands, Busslinger is a composed and dependable distributor, and when he is on the defensive, he is competitive and capable of limiting the impact of his immediate opponent.

Adam D’Aloia

 

D’Aloia, who was named best on the field in the SANFL Under-18s Grand Final, is one of the most polished and dependable midfielders in the 2022 draft class. With his hands, D’Aloia is a prolific first-possession winner, tackler, and a superb distributor of the ball. He plays a fierce two-way game and already boasts a powerful kick that penetrates the opponent’s defense.

Elijah Hewett

Hewett has proven to be one of the most entertaining midfielders in this draft with back-to-back spectacular performances in the WAFL Colts Grand Final and for Western Australia in the Under-17s against South Australia. Hewett is a powerful ball-winner who shows off his strength while exiting stoppages and causes havoc whenever he receives the ball forward of centre. Hewett combines good pace, agility, and evasion with devastating foot skills, whether he’s spotting and hitting targets inside 50 meters or completing the goal himself.

Isaac Keeler

Keeler is a part of Adelaide’s Next-Generation Academy, but if a bid arrives in the top-40 in 2022, the Crows will not have first access to him. Keeler, a 198cm high leaping, smooth moving athlete, is one of 2022’s most fascinating and extraordinary key forwards. He has strong hands overhead and his one-touch cleanness at ground level is excellent.

Harry Lemmey

Lemmey, who stands at 202cm and is the favorite to be the first key forward taken in the 2022 draft, had a fantastic season and ended it off with three goals in each of his finals, including 12 marks in his last encounter. Lemmey is most dangerous in the lead-up to the ball, displaying a voracious hunger for the ball, displaying an unusually high work rate, and consistently generating meaningful separation on the lead.

Kobe Ryan

Ryan is a powerful contested ball winner with superb speed and agility, as well as a feisty tackler. All these skills have made Ryan one of 2022’s most advanced midfielders. Ryan not only wins the ball on the inside, but he also covers a lot of territories and finds the ball on the outside, demonstrating nice and tidy skills.

Elijah Tsatas

Tsatas, who can play on the wing or across halfback, splits the lines with his speed and is an excellent ball user with his precise kicks out in front of targets to lead onto. In 2022, Tsatas hopes to push further towards the center square, allowing him to use his quickness to break out the other side of stoppages.

George Wardlaw

Wardlaw, a strong first-possession winner who excels at stoppages, demonstrates strength to withstand opposition tackles, ward off opponents, and blast out of stoppages after regaining the ball. Wardlaw is also a superb hand distributor at stoppages, finding targets on the outside by hand on a regular basis.

Conclusion

The 2022 AFL draft looks to be very promising, with a number of talented midfielders and key defenders. Keep an eye out for these 2022 draft prospects in the coming years! Who do you think will stand out amongst the AFL rookies for 2022? With these NAB League best players and Under 18 AFL Australian Squad members ready to make their mark, it’s going to be an exciting year!

If you want to prepare yourself for the big league, you must Prepare Like A Pro. Get in touch with Jack or one of the coaches today! We’ll help you get ready for the 2022 AFL draft combine and help you how to take your game to the next level. 

To join our online high-performance program for free click here.

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Benefits of Private Coaching Under Prepare Like A ProCategoriesBlog Elite Lifestyle Get Better Plan Training Program

The Benefits of Private Coaching Under Prepare Like A Pro for Aussie Rules Footballers

If you have aspirations of becoming an AFL player, then you know that the competition is fierce. There are thousands of players of all ages who are trying to make it to the top, and only a select few will make it. If you want to be one of those players, then you need to start preparing like a pro.

Seriously though it means getting regular feedback from professionals that know where you need to focus your hard work. Private coaching from experts in the field is a great place to start if you don’t have access to a coach at your club.  In this blog post, we will discuss some of the benefits of private coaching with our Prepare Like A Pro coaches.

The Significance of Private Coaching for AFL Players

Anyone who has ever played a team sport knows that having a great strength & conditioning coach can make all the difference. A PLP coach can teach the skills and strategies needed to gain a physical advantage over your opponents, but they can also instill confidence and encourage players to reach their full potential. In the world of Australian Rules Football, private coaching is becoming increasingly popular among professional players. While AFL clubs provide their own coaches, many players feel that they can benefit from the additional guidance and support of a private coach. Private strength & conditioning coaches often have more time to spend with each individual player, and they can tailor their training to the specific needs of the athletes they work with. As a result, private coaching can give players the edge they need to succeed at the highest level of competitive football. For many AFL players, private coaching is an essential part of their training regime.

The Benefits of Getting Private Coaching From Prepare Like A Pro

 If you want to improve running economy and lifting technique, through video analysis and direct coach feedback, book your private coaching session with Prepare Like A Pro today. You can choose between a one-on-one session or a small group session where Prepare Like A Pro strength and conditioning coaches will provide you with the specific feedback and training needed to improve your game. Our coaches have worked with some of the best AFL players in the country, we know what it takes to succeed at the highest level. With his help, you can reach your full potential as an AFL player.

 Here are some benefits that you and other AFL players can experience with private coaching under Prepare Like A Pro:

1) On-the-Spot Technique Feedback for Reduced Training Injury

Australian Rules Football is a demanding sport that puts a lot of strain on the body. As a result, injuries are common, and many players find themselves sidelined for extended periods of time. One way to reduce the risk of training injury is to seek out private coaching. A good coach can provide on-the-spot technique feedback that can help players avoid overuse injuries. They can also tailor programs to individual needs, which can help reduce the likelihood of muscular imbalances and other problems. In addition, private coaches can offer motivation and support that can keep players from getting complacent in their training. As a result, private coaching can be an invaluable tool for AFL players looking to stay healthy and on the field.

2) Refine Your Running Economy for Faster, More Explosive, and Efficient Running

Many professional AFL athletes use private coaching to help them refine their running economy. Studies have shown that even a small improvement in the running economy can lead to faster, more explosive, and efficient running. Private coaching can help AFL players learn how to run with better technique and become more efficient runners. In addition, private coaching can help players develop the strength and power needed for explosive speed and acceleration. As a result, private coaching can be an important tool for AFL players who want to improve their running economy.

3) Individualized Coaching for Recovery and Nutrition Goals

AFL players are under immense pressure to perform at their best week in and week out. As a result, many of them turn to private coaching to help them stay sharp and focused. Private coaching can provide individualized coaching for recovery and nutrition goals, helping players to optimize their performance. In addition, private coaches can work with players to develop specific game plans and strategies. By tailoring their training to the individual needs of each player, private coaches can help AFL players take their game to the next level.

If you’re an AFL player who is looking to take your game to the next level, then private coaching from Prepare Like A Pro is the right choice for you. With the help of our experienced and knowledgeable coaches, you can reach your full potential as an AFL player. 

Contact us today to learn more about our private coaching services. We look forward to helping you take your game to the next level!

BOOK A FREE CALL WITH OUR PROS TODAY!

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How to Train Like an AFL MidfielderCategoriesBlog Elite Lifestyle Get Better Plan Training Program

How to Train Like an AFL Midfielder

Do you have what it takes to become an AFL midfielder? It takes a lot of hard work and dedication to make it in this competitive sport. In this blog post, we’ll outline some of the AFL training programs and AFL fitness tests that Australian Rules Footballer midfielders use to stay in shape and dominate on the field. So if you’re looking to take your game to the next level, keep on reading!

What is an AFL Midfielder?

An AFL midfielder is a player who is responsible for playing the game either as an inside midfielder: (center, ruck rover, rover) and the wing (outside midfielders). Their job is to link up the play between the forwards and backs, and they are often required to win the ball back from the opposition. Midfielders need to be super fast and strong to win the contest while covering a lot of ground during a game, and they need to have the stamina to keep going for four quarters.

What Makes an Excellent Midfielder?

There are a few AFL fitness components that make an excellent AFL midfielder. Firstly, they need to be strong and have the endurance to run all day. Secondly, they need to be good at both offensive and defensive play. Thirdly, midfielders need to have good ball skills and be able to make quick decisions under pressure. Lastly, they need to be good leaders and have the ability to inspire their teammates.

Some of the best AFL midfielders of all time include Adelaide’s Mark Ricciuto, Brisbane’s Simon Black, Carlton’s Chris Judd, Collingwood’s Scott Pendlebury, and Melbourne Clayton Oliver, just to mention a few of the greats. Now that we’ve covered what an AFL midfielder is and what attributes make a great one, let’s take a look at some of the training programs they use to stay on top of their game.

AFL Training Programs for Midfielders

The midfield, of all the positions in Australian football, is arguably the most difficult to master. This is particularly true when playing as an inside midfielder. Such is the case since most balls in play pass via the midfielders, especially the center midfielder. Midfielders must have the abilities and conditioning to get the ball and defend, whether they are delivering the ball to their fellow forwards at the 50-meter area or defending against the opponent’s 50-meter area. You can use our online AFL running programs and training drills as part of your training programs to prepare well for the midfielder position. 

An efficient strength and conditioning program can give midfielders a significant advantage in terms of fitness, strength, and even speed. High-performance coaches should handle midfielder training implementation, and the elements should be applicable for genuine AFL play scenarios.

Handballing, kicking, and tackling, to mention a few skills, should all be included in football drills to properly develop midfielders. Strength and conditioning are particularly important for midfielders because they will be doing a lot of running, chasing down loose balls, going one on one with opponents, and even reaching beyond the 50-meter area when given the opportunity.

Recommended Training Drills for Midfielders

There are plenty of AFL fitness training drills that midfielders can do to reach peak conditioning in both physique and skills. Here are a few of them:

 1) Interval Training 

This type of training involves alternating periods of high-intensity and low-intensity exercises. Interval training is a great way to improve your overall fitness and stamina.

2) Plyometric Exercises 

Plyometric exercises are explosive movements that help improve your power and speed. These types of exercises are often used by AFL players to help improve their explosiveness on the field.

3) Strength Training 

Strength training is important for all football players, but it is especially important for midfielders. This is because they need to be strong enough to win the ball back from the opposition and also provide plenty of run and support for their teammates.

4) Ball Skills Training

Ball skills training is essential for all footballers, but it is especially important for midfielders. This is because they need to be able to make quick decisions with the ball and also deliver accurate passes to their teammates.

Midfielders looking to get better can try these drills:

  •     Sets of up to 20 seconds of 100-meter run with a 20-second rest in between. This replicates on-and-off-the-field running conditions in midfield.
  •     Agility running drills lasting 5 to 10 seconds, with or without the ball. This simulates a midfielder who has taken possession of the ball and is rushing with it at high intensity either side shuffling or cutting. 
  •     Every 60 seconds, perform a set of 50-meter sprints. Reps should be done alternately from a kneeling, conventional position, and face away positions. 
  •     Sets of 20 to 90 seconds of maximum distance running, followed by 90 seconds of walk/jogging or skills between reps. This, too, simulates the running scenarios that midfielders experience.
  •     While at rest or roaming around, practice some handballing and goal kicking in between drills.

Final Thoughts

The role of an AFL midfielder is one of the most important roles in Australian football. Midfielders need to have good ball skills, be able to make quick decisions under pressure, and also be good leaders. If you’re looking to improve your game and become a better midfielder, make sure to follow the tips and training drills provided in our high-performance program. You can try it for a free 14 day trial by clicking the link below.

Register to #PrepareLikeAPro’s FREE 14-DAY PROGRAM TO GET FITTER, FASTER STRONGER!

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How Australian Rule Footballers Should Warm UpCategoriesBlog Training Program

How Australian Rule Footballers Should Warm-Up

As an AFL footballer, you know the importance of warming up before a game. Warming up not only helps to prevent injuries but can also help improve your performance on the field. Here are some tips on doing a proper AFL warm-up to make sure your body is ready before taking the field.

The Significance of Footballers Warming Up Before Playing

You may be tempted to just run out onto the field and immediately get in the game. However, skipping your warm-up can actually increase your risk of injury. A good warm-up should prepare your body for the physical activity about to occur. It helps increase your heart rate, prepare you mentally and get your blood flowing so you feel ready to compete with maximum effort!

A proper footy warm-up should include a mix of light-moderate and high-intensity movement and mobility drills. You don’t need to spend a lot of time on your warm-up, but it is essential to do it properly. If you’re not sure how to warm up for football, here are some tips to get you started.

Warm-Up Activities

For AFL preparation, start with light aerobic exercises such as jogging or run drills. Mix inside shuffles, backward pedaling, lunging, and jumping. These exercises will increase your body temperature and prepare your body for more strenuous activity.

Once you’ve completed a few minutes of aerobic exercises, it’s time to start mobilising. Australian Rules Football is a sport that requires a lot of mobility, so it’s crucial to take your muscles through range before playing. Ideally, avoid static stretching and look to incorporate dynamic mobility to mimic the movement patterns you are about to face during the game.  

You can also add in some basic ball skills such as handballing and kicking, this is an essential part of the preparation for yourself and the team. This will help get your body ready for the game-like movements you’ll perform on the field. In addition, it is best to have a strength and conditioning coach like the ones at Prepare Like a Pro to guide the team with a comprehensive footy warm-up routine.

What are the Risks Involved with Not Warming Up Properly?

Not warming up before playing can have some severe consequences. Muscles that are cold and unused are more susceptible to injuries. In addition, you may also find yourself mentally not switched on and sluggish during the game if you don’t take the time to warm up properly. 

AFL players need to make sure they take the time to properly warm-up before every game, whether it’s an AFL preseason or the regular season. By following these tips, you can help reduce your risk of injuries and be at your best on the field.

Here are several injuries that can occur if you don’t warm up before playing Australian Rules Football:

1) Hamstring Injury

This is one of the most common injuries in AFL. It can occur when the hamstring muscles are suddenly stretched beyond their limit. A proper warm-up can help prepare these muscles and reduce your risk of this injury.

2) Knee Injury

Knee injuries are also prevalent in AFL. They can range from minor strains to major ligament tears. A good warm-up can help increase the stability of your ankles & hips which can help reduce your risk of knee injuries. 

3) Ankle Sprain

 An ankle sprain is a very common injury in sports that involve running and jumping. It occurs when the ankle joint is twisted or turned beyond its normal range of motion. Warming up can help prepare the surrounding muscles and increase the range of motion in your ankle. This can help reduce your risk of ankle sprains.

 4) Groin Strain

A groin strain is a type of injury that occurs when the muscles in the groin area are stretched or torn. It is a common injury in sports that involve a high-speed change of direction running and twisting movements. A proper warm-up can help prepare the muscles and reduce your risk of this injury.

5) Back Injury

Back injuries are one of the most common injuries in all sports. They can range from mild strains to serious spine injuries. A proper warm-up can increase the range of motion of your posterior chain (calves/hamstrings/lower & middle back while also preparing your core for combat. This can help reduce your risk of back injuries.

The Bottomline

Warming up before playing Australian Rules Football is essential for reducing your risk of injuries. By following the tips in this article, you can help prepare your body for the strenuous activity involved in playing this sport. If you want to prepare your body for the rigors of AFL, get in touch with Prepare Like A Pro. We offer a variety of strength and conditioning programs that can help you stay injury-free this season including working with your local football club. For more information check Football Clubs and Schools