How far do afl players run in a gameCategoriesBlog Training Program

How Far Do AFL Players Run In A Football Game? | Prepare Like a Pro

AFL players are some of the fittest athletes in the world. They need to be able to run long distances at high speeds, change direction quickly, and have the endurance to last for an entire game.

Of course, there’s a lot more that goes into playing AFL than just running. Players need to be able to think on their feet, make quick decisions, and jump high enough to catch the ball. But it’s still fascinating to think about how much distance they cover over the course of a match. 

There are some really fit players in the AFL, and it’s amazing what their bodies can do. Some players have even been known to cover up to 18 kilometers in a game! It just goes to show that if you want to be good at AFL, you need to be physically prepared to cover a lot of distance. 

So just how far do AFL players run in a football game?

Thanks to GPS technology, we now have a pretty good idea. AFL players cover an average of 12-14 kilometers per game, with some players running as much as 20 kilometers in a single match.

And it’s not just the amount of distance that AFL players cover that is impressive, it’s also the speed at which they do it. AFL players can reach speeds of up to 35 kilometers per hour when sprinting!

Hear from Harry Sheezel AFL 2022 Draft top 10 prospect about his preparation for Aussie rules football: 

AFL players typically run between 3 and 7 kilometers during in-season training sessions and 5 – 16 kilometers during pre-season training sessions. Interval sprinting is a key part of their conditioning, as it helps them develop the explosive speed and agility required for the game. AFL players typically do several short sprints (20-40 meters) at maximal effort, followed by a brief rest period. This type of training not only improves their on-field performance but also helps them build the endurance needed to play an entire game.

AFL players need to have a high level of aerobic fitness to be able to run around the oval for an extended period of time. AFL conditioning programs, therefore, need to include a lot of running, both long slow distances and shorter sprints, to build up the players’ aerobic capacity. 

Aerobic capacity can be improved by doing interval training, which involves periods of high-intensity activity followed by periods of lower-intensity activity or rest. This type of training helps the body to use oxygen more efficiently and therefore improves endurance. 

Incorporating fitness into training drills is a good way to keep players motivated and help them improve their aerobic capacity. For example, you could start a drill with a short burst of speed followed by a period of jogging or walking. This will help the players to get their heart rates up and then recover before going again. 

Increasing the intensity and duration of aerobic training over time will help players to improve their fitness levels and become better AFL players.

High-speed running is a key component of AFL training, as it helps players develop the necessary capacity to run up and down the ground. On average, AFL players will run between 300 and 600 at high speeds during in-season training sessions and anywhere from 500 to 3000 in pre-season sessions. This type of conditioning not only helps improve their on-field performance but also reduces the risk of injury.

Aerobic fitness testing is an important part of AFL player conditioning. By regularly assessing aerobic fitness, players and coaches can monitor training improvements and identify areas that need more focus.

There are a number of different tests that can be used to measure aerobic fitness in AFL players. Some of the most common include the beep test, yo-yo intermittent recovery test, and multistage shuttle run test.

The beep test is one of the most commonly used aerobic fitness tests in AFL. It involves running between two points 20 meters apart at increasing speeds, as dictated by a series of beeps. The level at which the player can no longer keep up with the beeps is their score.

The yo-yo intermittent recovery test is another popular option for AFL players. This test involves running back and forth between two points, with varying degrees of intensity. The aim is to see how quickly the player can recover from periods of high-intensity activity.

The multistage shuttle run test is another option that can be used to measure aerobic fitness in AFL players. This test involves running back and forth between two points, with the distance increasing each time. The aim is to see how far the player can run in a set period of time.

Overall, these tests are a good way to measure the aerobic fitness of AFL players and can help coaches and players alike to identify areas that need more focus. By regularly testing fitness levels, players can ensure that they are making progress and working towards their goals. 

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

Defining the “dose” of altitude training: how high to live for optimal sea level performance enhancement

Summary

The broader research of this study was to determine the minimal effective dose for living high and training low. This article suggest that previous altitude studies have shown that altitude training has had little effect on EPO and increasing red cell mass. The study hypothesized that the higher you live the greater the chronic stimulus to aerobic pathways and therefore Vo2 max and 3km time trial.
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Athletes were assigned to four different altitude living arrangements while going through a training block at the 1,250 m – 3000 m.

Critique

The research problem identified to develop a specific understanding of the differences in physiological adaptation when comparing living at different altitude levels.

As mentioned in the study altitude training has been proven to improve VO2 max for sub elite and elite endurance athletes. While effective in the developing physiological adaptation the individual variance amongst previous studies is significant, particularly with EPO response and red cell mass. This study is hoping to discover the optimal chronic living altitude for a least affective dose to achieve hematological acclimatization and thus aerobic capacity performance.

A randomized small group of 48 athletes were selected controlled study. After 4 weeks of sea level testing which included hematological, metabolic, and performance base line measures at sea level. athletes were randomly assigned to one of four living altitudes (1,780, 2085, 2454 or 2800 m).

Method

Summary

The research problem of this study was to quantify the most effective living altitude heights for improving aerobic capacity.
The subjects were randomly selected 48 collegiate track & cross country runners 32 men and 16 women close to the same age, weight & height of 21 – 24 years old, weighed 64 kg range of 8.4kg and 174cm range of 9cm.
Members were excluded if they didn’t fit the criteria of living altitude at or above 1500m, and or if injury or illness would impaired normal normal training.

Critique

The elimination for those living in the altitude zones, keeping physical traits similar and selecting healthy athletes from similar sporting back grounds helped eliminated any major bias about individual variance. Subjects were also matched by sex, training history, Vo2 max and a 3km time trial then randomly assigned to living one of the four living arrangements. Supervision from a staff member ensure living compliance. Athletes would only leave for grocery shopping and to train at the set intensity following the HiLo method. High intensity interval-based training completed at lower altitude of 1250 m. Moderate & low intensity training was completed at moderate altitude 1,780 – 3000m. I think the large range for moderate could be an issue for variability of results.
Assessment protocols were thorough and valid utilising previous research, Vo2 sub-maximal test assessed on a treadmill at a consistent pace 14km/h for men and 12km/h for women.

Results

Summary

This researched utilised reliable and valid testing measure to determine bench marking and test the effectiveness of the study.

Critique

The data obtained throughout this study was appropriate and completed with scientific methods.

The use of tables and graphs was an effective way to present the testing data. The in-text results contained all significant findings in relation to the four different groups.
Figure 2 is an effective way presented percent change in 3,000m time trial performance at sea level from post altitude and 2-week post altitude. Effective show casing the difference in results amongst the four groups, the graph was lacking a heading yet there was a blurb providing context and helped with understanding the block graph.

Discussion

Summary

The study set out to find the optimal living altitude for sea level performance enhancement omit aerobic capacity and physiology in endurance athletes when compared to different altitude living arrangements while completing the same training program.

The main findings from this study were that there was a large difference between the lowest altitude (1780m) when group compared to the other three groups. Including 44% less EPO changes, suggesting that living at higher altitude has a greater erythropoietic stimulus to increase red cell mass.

Performance increase in the 3km time trial for the two middle groups were superior (2 – 3%) when compared to the lowest and highest altitude groups whom had no change in 3km time trial.

Critique

The findings in this study showed significant difference in living at different altitude for 3km performance. The sample size was identified, and the study did a great job of filtering people from similar demographics while still randomly selecting the groups. Definitions and variables were all well explained to help with understanding what scientific terms like (Sa02) mean.

This study put to good use the current research on altitude training and living high training low for aerobic adaptation. While achieving their hypothesis of displaying the difference between living at different altitude heights, they also found contrast beliefs in that the highest altitude group didn’t achieve the greatest results.

I thought the limitation of this study was the dominance of male to female yet the study group did a good job to accommodate with adjust supplementation, the pace for sub max test and height/weight age of the athletes. Find the optimal living arrangements a few more groups could have been selected and a larger sample size of athletes now we have an idea that there is a sweet spot between 2085 – 2454m.

The discussion piece did a great job providing their opinion on why the highest group didn’t achieve the greatest results. Census being the acclimatization effects was more significant for this group and so the accumulation of poor-quality sleep and mountain sickness may have had negative effects on the training response and testing performance.

The implications of these findings were that there is difference in physiological response depending on what living altitude arrangement for living in high attitude. The practical take ways of this study were that the 1780m group wasn’t as effective as the middle two groups and the highest group had negative significant implications due to acclimatization.

Part 2: Reflection

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Rationale
Strength & Conditioning (S&C)
I have chosen Strength & Conditioning as the target discipline I would like to focus on. I have the desire to be a head strength & conditioning coach at AFL level soon. Currently clarifying my S&C philosophy for elite athletes, I also have a strong passion for helping athletes prepare for high performance and sound S&C principles and methods help with this. I enjoy working in a team environment and I like the fact S&C’s must not only consider our own area of expertise but also the coaches, dietitian, sport psych and of course the athletes.

This article struck my interest as it wasn’t long ago where AFL clubs were keen on going away for altitude camps for physiology reasons also mental resilience. Understanding the science behind ideal living in high altitude could come in handy down the line when planning training camps.

Personal & professional strengths
My strengths from a personal point of view are:

I am a motivated and curios learner, I enjoy open and honest conversations on why people do things the way they do. I love to connect with those I’m working with whether it be athletes or staff. I value inclusivity and having an open-minded mindset. This helps me develop rapport with those I’m working with.

In relation to professional strengths:

My strength & conditioning experience started 13 years ago.
The time dedicated to coaching has helped me develop my communication and skill set to adjust my coaching to suit the environment I am working in.

Playing the game of football for 10 years and working with sub-elite and elite footballers in an S&C role for the last 7 years has helped me have a strong understanding of the demands of the sport.

I have the tools to help athletes with their athletic strength & conditioning goals.

Areas for future improvement

In my group-level communication, I am working to ensure my group-level communication is clear, engaging, and time efficient. Familiarizing myself with the recent research on velocity-based training for power development and Maximal aerobic conditioning prescription for team-based athletes.

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