Strength Performance Network

Football Winter Conditioning - Competition

I'm a true believer that you have to be a competitor in everything, I just think when you can win or lose you work harder. I was wondering what some of you do at your program in the winter to force your athletes to compete.

At Fordham, we break our team up into small groups and have a points system with rewards. We also have a rating system based on test results with categories that the athletes can achieve. This year, I want to make our conditioning drills more competitve, once the coaches get off the road recruiting, we do a traditional "station" sytle winter workout, followed by some type of sprint work. Prior to them being around, i run the team in groups 2 days a week doing linear speed work one day and change of direction work on another.

I was wondering what drills you guys do during team runs... I was thinking of implementing plate races, towel 1 on 1 tug of war, tire flips for time, stick wrestling, and farmers walk relays. Any drills you guys have or are thinking of implementing would be great to discus.

Let's all bounce some ideas off eachother to get after our athletes this winter.


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Comment by Mark Campbell on November 12, 2008 at 10:39am
TP, we do similar winter conditioning as you. we go two days a week for five weeks. we set up 8 stations, 2 identical drills at each station. we preset 16 teams of 4 guys. then each day they compete against a different team. For example day 1, team 1 vs team 16, day two team 1 vs team 15 and so on. after ten days of winter conditioning, teams get points for winning a drill. at the end of the day we total up points to see who won. the losing teams run sprints at the end of that session. after ten wint cond days there is one team who wins with total points and is given t-shirts for wint cond champs. wint cond days are tues and thurs, then on fridays we do form running and speed drills with me.
Comment by David Harris on October 22, 2008 at 10:01pm
The point system TP mentions above is a great idea. The off-season can become long and drawn out. Issuing points for performance, and thus creating small goals within the overall goal (improved speed and strength at the end of the off-season) is a great way of encouraging athletes to continue to put their best effort forward each and every day. Are there any other coaches that do something similar?

Pitting one team against another is also a great idea. I've actually never heard of that before. The exercises mentioned above are great "sport neutral" exercises, thus making comparing say, a basketball team with a football team, possible. I'm interested in discovering other "sport neutral" exercises. Any thoughts?
Comment by Sergio Rojas on October 21, 2008 at 5:06pm
Something I do with our teams is I have them compete against each other. Every now and then I'll schedule certain teams together for conditioning drills. It's a little different when you have a men's basketball, men's lacrosse, football, baseball, and etc. go heads up against each other in speed and agility workouts. I do the same thing with my women teams as well too, and the athletes love it. Every team competes and they like to be known as the hardest working team. The whole thing is a lot of fun, it gets very competitive, but everyone supports each other and it brings the athletic department as a whole a lot closer.

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