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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How to Prepare Like an AFL PlayerCategoriesBlog Training Program

How to Prepare Like an AFL Player

What does it take to be an AFL player? For many, the answer is years of hard work and dedication. But what about the players who are already in peak physical condition? How do they prepare for the demanding season ahead? In this post, we’ll take a look at some of the ways AFL players get ready for the big leagues. Stay tuned for tips on how you can train like an AFL superstar! AFL players are some of the fittest athletes in the world. They need to be able to run for long distances, jump high and make powerful tackles without getting tired. So how do they prepare for the season ahead? How Do AFL Players Train in the Preseason? Many AFL players follow a rigorous fitness program during the off-season. This might involve running, lifting weights, gymnastics, or aerobic training. How much weight players are lifting depends on their position, age, and athletic physical development plan.  The preseason is also a time to build up the muscles required to handle the physicality of the sport i.e. tackling, and bumping. The club strength and conditioning coach designs a program that works on exactly this. All AFL players have one thing in common: a rigorous training routine. Even though they may conduct different workouts depending on their talents and shortcomings, they are all functioning at an exceptionally high level. It’s very common for professional athletes to exercise five days a week for several hours each day. It’s their day job, and training is a necessary component of it. Not to mention that they maintain this rigorous training regimen for many years to become top-tier athletes. They reach the pinnacle of their abilities as the training progresses. In a nutshell, it isn’t something that occurs overnight. So, if you want to train like an AFL player, you’ll need a rigorous training routine. A typical workout of an AFL player involves running for long distances, sprinting for short bursts, and strength training. Here’s a sample of what comprises a common AFL workout: Sprints During an AFL game, there is a lot of stopping and starting, which necessitates the ability to sprint rapidly and efficiently. As a result, sprint training is an important part of AFL training and a good place to start if you want to train like an AFL player. An example of sprint training is as follows:
  • Make a 20-meter measurement.
  • Warm up before beginning your sprinting practice.
  • 40-meter sprint (to the 20-meter mark and back) 8 repetitions with a 30-second break between each repetition
  • 1 set is 8 sprints
  • Complete two to three sets.
You can also check out these running workouts provided by Prepare Like A Pro on YouTube. Long-Distance Running Although sprinting ability is key for an AFL player’s skill, endurance is also necessary. As a result, longer-distance running is frequently used in AFL training. Even so, this isn’t likely to be what you’re used to. You won’t be running for long distances. You can conceive of them as long sprints instead. Strength Exercises After that, you’ll begin to do some strength training. Because of their versatility, kettlebells are popular among AFL players. They aid in the development of strength, cardiovascular fitness, and work capacity. In addition, you can utilize them on the field in between ball-handling activities. The following are kettlebell exercises that you can use to train like an AFL player:
  • Turkish Get-Up
  • Kettlebell Swings
  • One-armed Kettlebell Swings
  • High-Pull
  • Kettlebell Goblet Squat
  • Renegade Rows
Use these exercises with your sports scientist to guarantee the correct technique and get the most out of them.  Explosive Movement Training AFL players also put a lot of emphasis on explosive movement training. Explosive motions are defined as transitioning from a state of rest to maximal power in the quickest possible period. You’ll train your fast-twitch muscle fibers and try to reduce the period between resting and performing at your peak to increase your explosive motions. It’s challenging, but it vastly enhances your AFL game. Your exercise science specialist or trainer—like the ones over at Prepare Like A Pro—may work with you in the gym on: 
  • Improve ankle, knee, and hip power with Olympic lifting movements.
  • Running sprint machines that require you to pull against resistance while running sprints
  • Squat to Toes is a type of squat in which you perform explosive squats (from a squat to standing on your toes) with resistance on your shoulders.
Check out our AFL power-based exercises here: AFL power exercises provided by Prepare Like A Pro on YouTube.  Core Training Your actual strength comes from your center, at the end of the day. Your core will assist you in changing directions fast, stopping and starting sprints, and providing more force in explosive motions. Using core workouts to develop like an AFL player is another option. Exercises with kettlebells, such as the ones mentioned above, are excellent for strengthening your core while also working your extremities. Other core-strengthening activities, such as medicine ball throws and Bosu ball workouts, are also necessary. Stretching and Rest One of the most common mistakes people make when starting a tough training routine is neglecting to stretch and recover. Stretching is necessary for flexibility and mobility, while recuperation is necessary for muscular growth. Make sure you devote time to stretching and resting after each training session. This will optimize your results and help you avoid injury. Mental Training Mental training is just as vital as physical training. Reaching your fitness objectives and training like an AFL player is frequently a mental game. Pushing yourself to your boundaries implies believing that your body is capable of more than your mind believes. So, when you’re about to give up and push yourself a little harder, you begin to realize that your body is capable of handling it. The importance of mental training for AFL players cannot be overstated. Similarly, surviving the heat of playing outside in the Australian sun may be a mental challenge in and of itself. It’s crucial to become used to doing workouts outside in the heat when training like an AFL player. Just remember to wear sunscreen and drink plenty of water. Another mental aspect that AFL players must deal with is performing under pressure. In any competitive setting, the stakes are high, and while this pressure frequently helps athletes perform at their best, it can also lead to avoidable blunders. Pressure mistakes can be avoided by practicing in a game-like environment. Now that you know what an AFL player’s workout looks like, you can begin to put together a program of your own. Utilize the exercises and tips above to develop the strength, speed, endurance, and explosiveness you’ll need to succeed on the field. Remember to start slowly and gradually increase the intensity of your workouts. And finally, always listen to your body and don’t push yourself too hard, too fast. With a little bit of dedication and effort, you can train like an AFL player and reach your fitness goals. Keeping your body in shape is one of the most important things you can do for yourself. The more energy you have, the better off you are going to be. Our team at Prepare Like A Pro wants to help make sure that every athlete gets what they need to succeed on and off the field. Whether it’s a fitness assessment or personal training sessions with our expert staff, we offer everything an athlete needs to stay ready for their next game day! Contact us today if this sounds like something that would interest you! Check #PrepareLikeAPro High-Performance Testing with an AFL Strength & Conditioning Coach today! *** Be updated with the new trends. Listen to your favorite athletes and learn from reliable coaches. Subscribe to Prepare Like A Pro Youtube and Podcast!    
Josh Fahey Prepare Like A Pros ambassadorsCategoriesBlog Elite Lifestyle Players Training Program

PLP Ambassador, Josh Fahey, Became a Giant

Josh Fahey, a Canberra native, was listed by the GWS Giants in the AFL draft, putting him one step closer to playing in the AFL.

Fahey, a national ambassador for Prepare Like A Pro and a Giants Academy product, was selected with pick 42 after GWS matched a Bulldogs bid.

 

The 18-year-old is a medium defender/winger with a dazzling left foot who enjoys taking the game on with his mastery of pace and speed. Fahey has been in the Giants’ system since he was a kid, and getting selected up by them is a dream come true for him.  Before the draft, he met with Leon Cameron, who informed him that he was in the club’s plans, and he’s trained with the club in Sydney a few times over the last two years. He “liked every second of it,” as one might expect.

“It seems like home,” Fahey remarked, “and there’s no else I’d rather be than here.”

Fahey, a high talent from outside the AFL heartland, played for the AFL Academy against the Geelong VFL team in April, collecting the MCC President’s medal for best on the ground; played five games for the Giants’ VFL side; and, of course, wore the yellow and black for his Queanbeyan Tigers.  He appreciates everything the Tigers have done to assist him in making the AFL list after coming through the Tigers program.

“They’ve done a lot for me during my career and are probably the main reason I’m where I am now,” Fahey said.

Growing up in Canberra’s rugby league heartland and playing for Queanbeyan, Fahey’s path to the AFL big time was everything but smooth. After his father transferred to the Gold Coast for employment in January of last year, he took a three-month break and played two games for the Suns Academy. After that time, it was unclear if Fahey would still be considered a Giants Academy player for AFL draft purposes when he returned to Canberra.

Before he sealed his credentials with a best-on-ground effort in a losing cause for the AFL Academy against Geelong’s VFL club, league officials signed off on his eligibility.

Fahey is a high-achieving junior who embodies the progress junior football has made in the ten years since the Giants Academy was founded. Despite this, Fahey believes it is still more difficult to break into the AFL from Canberra than it is from the footy-heavy states south of the Barassi-line.

“You don’t get noticed as much,” he stated, “but some people don’t get the same opportunity as others in larger states, so it’s quite humbling to be able to receive this opportunity.”

“There’s a lot of strong talent going through the Academy in Canberra and the Riverina area, so I wouldn’t be surprised if I saw a lot more draftees come out of the area.”

And now that his number has been summoned, the sprightly rebounding defender should expect things to go swiftly.  His goal for pre-season is to put in a good chunk of work in preparation for his AFL debut next season.

“Hopefully next year I have the opportunity,” he said. “It would be fantastic to debut here in front of my local audience and family.”

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PLP Ambassador Nick Daicos Got Drafted with MagpiesCategoriesBlog Elite Lifestyle Players

PLP Ambassador, Nick Daicos, Drafted to the Collingwood Football Club!

Nick Daicos is one of the most well-known prospective AFL players in the 2021 draft. The son of legendary Magpies ace Peter and brother of Collingwood star Josh, Nick is one of Prepare Like A Pro’s esteemed national ambassadors.

 

 

Daicos is undoubtedly one of the most well-known draftees in football history, given his popularity on social media and heightened focus on the talent pipeline. Daicos, potentially the league’s first father-son selection ever, has already signed a four-year contract, has an endorsement deal with Nike, has over 50,000 Instagram followers, is known by a moniker “Whisper” (his social media account username), is stopped for pictures on the street frequently draws hundreds of supporters to his NAB games. Add to that he’s going to one of the country’s biggest clubs, which just had its worst season in more than two decades, and the attention on Daicos is entirely understandable.

This is Nick Daicos, a basketball-smitten, Fortnite-playing youngster navigating COVID-19 challenges during the most crucial year of his young career. All while being the white hope for Collingwood, a classy midfielder with pinpoint finesse, an incredible work ethic, a thirst for the ball, a star mentality, and a talent for the goal that is in his genes.

The elder Daicos is still remembered as a Pies hero, a 250-game standout who scored 549 goals and led them to their first-ever premiership in 1990. Daicos was known as the ‘Macedonian Marvel’ for his incredible goal-scoring feats and football prowess. The 60-year-old, who deals in real estate development, is now a proud father.

“When I was younger, I’d search him up on YouTube and have a look at a few of his goals,” Nick said in an interview with AFL’s website. “He’s the last person who would say, ‘Hey, look at this clip of me!’, but we are all so proud of dad.”

Collingwood coach Nathan Buckley said Daicos would have been selected for round one if he had been on the list after working with the Pies twice a week as part of the club’s father-son program in February.

“There’s no disputing his absolute talent. He already looks strong, quick, low to the ground – the Daicos trait. Very powerful. Left foot, right foot. Talent-wise there’s no question. Effort, attitude-wise he looks really good,” Buckley said.

All father-son possibilities pique interest, but when you combine Collingwood’s troubles and Daicos’ form in 2021, he becomes a national figure. However, as the year progressed, Daicos was undecided about nominating for the Pies or joining the open draft. In February, Daicos, his parents, and D’Orazio met with Collingwood football manager Graham Wright, who explicitly confirmed the club’s intention of signing him.

“At the moment, I’m up for grabs for anyone. I’m so driven by team success. I want to win two, three, or four flags. That’s my aim. I feel like I’ve got to make the decision that’s right for me, I don’t feel pressure to nominate as a father-son. I’ve worked hard to get into this position and hopefully, it pans out that I do get to Collingwood and I’m really liking the club. But I’m stuck in the middle and not sure what I’ll do or where I’ll go,” said the younger Daicos.

He also confirmed his desire to play with his brother and be recognized as the top draft pick.

“The pro is I’d love to play with Josh. To play with your brother at the highest level would be a dream come true. That’s the main thing for me to go there. Against would probably be that I really want to be the No.1 draft pick. That’s my aim but if I’m a father-son it could stop that. A lot of people will say, ‘It’s just a pick’ which is definitely fair enough but it’s also a really good representation of the hard work that’s been put in.”

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Jacob van Rooyen Prepare Like A Pros Elite Football Player AmbassadorCategoriesBlog Players PLP Podcast

Jacob van Rooyen – Drafted to Melbourne Football Club

Jacob van Rooyen is an intriguing talent Melbourne selected as the 19th overall pick in the recent 2021 National Draft.

A national ambassador for a multi-faceted provider of physical preparation services Prepare Like A Pro, the 6-foot-3 Western Australian native could prove to be a valuable swingman, having expertise in vital position roles at both ends of the field.

The intriguing tall bolstered his draft stock with his season-ending performance for Claremont in the WAFL Colts competition. Van Rooyen kicked eleven goals in three Tigers finals, including four in a Grand Final defeat. His ability to play both sides of the field will be critical to the Demons’ success. This was on full display during Western Australia’s Under 19s representative contest against South Australia, where Van Rooyen excelled all day in the down back before sneaking up in the final moments to hit the game-winning major.

“Van Rooyen kicked the winning goal for Western Australia against South Australia in the under-19s clash last weekend, having drifted forward late after spending most of the game in defense. It is that versatility that has improved the Claremont product’s stocks across the year. Van Rooyen played at senior level earlier this season whilst battling glandular fever but his past two months have impressed with his work ethic and capacity to play in key positions,” said draft expert Callum Twomey.

Van Rooyen, who has shone at both ends of the grounds, had a sneaking suspicion he might wind up with the Demons.

“It’s really exciting, and hopefully, I can be a part of it next year and do it all again,” he said in an interview with The West Australian. “I had an interview with (coach) Simon (Goodwin), and then they called me to see how I was going. So I had a suspicion but wasn’t really sure. I feel obviously stoked and pumped. It’s really exciting and a dream come true.”

Van Rooyen, who was sidelined earlier this year by glandular fever, believed he could play senior footy next season and didn’t care which position he played.

“I think I’m quite close enough to a good size and good weight,” he said. “It’s probably just learning to be a bit smarter with my body.”

Van Rooyen stands out in a draft class dominated by midfielders. When you combine his tall stature, strong marking, hard running, and plenty of blond hair, it’s easy to see why scouts took notice.

“It’s not so much about me going out there and dominating – it’s more playing the best I can and proving I am able to play against men. I think showing I can hold my spot and that I’m physically ready is the main thing that’s good,” he said.

The lifelong Dockers supporter described training alongside club legends Nat Fyfe and David Mundy as unreal, despite idolizing a Richmond spearhead when honing his own attacking skill.

“I admire Jack Riewoldt and his uncanny ability to leap into contests. He does not always mark it, but he is constantly creating contests and is also an excellent lead player,”‘ he stated.

 

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