You’ve worked hard all off-season to transform your body in the weight room to be at your peak performance when practice starts up this fall. So why do so many athletes fail to keep training in-season and lose everything they have worked for? All the hard work of building muscle and maximizing speed/strength is in anticipation for the Fall sports’ practices that are right around the corner. Now is not the time to stop strength training as your season is beginning. This article will talk about the importance of in-season training and why you need to do it.

There are many different reasons for why an athlete should continue to train in season, but here are some of the main ideas to focus on:

Reasons You Should Continue to Train In-Season:

 

1. Success During Competition

It can take as little as two weeks for muscle atrophy, a decrease in the mass of muscle to start and causing you to lose the strength, flexibility and endurance you worked so hard for. Strength training in-season will help at the bare minimum maintain everything you worked for, and hopefully keep making gains. We want our athletes to be at the top of their game all season and not just the first couple weeks of competition. The stronger you are as an athlete, the more force you can produce. The more force you can produce, will help you run faster, hit harder, jump higher, have more endurance, etc. The list can go on and on. Training 1-2 times a week focusing on strength during the season can help you keep your maximal strength levels all season long. If you want to be at your top performance as the season wears on and when the postseason begins, practices and games are not enough to carry you through a season. A great example of in season training is during the 2016 NFL football postseason, the New England Patriots were in the weight room squatting 80% of their max in the week leading up to Super Bowl LI.

 2. Stay Healthy

The best way to help your team be successful is to be healthy and able to play during competition. The stronger you are, the more durable you will be to the stress put on your body during the playing season. In season training will help your body stay strong to handle the forces from practice and games.  Athletes that don’t continue to strength train in season will begin to breakdown physically leading to injuries and affect their performance as the season grinds on. In contact sports it is especially important to continue strength training during the season. Athletes in these sports must be stronger and have more power to overcome external forces, usually from the opponent. Another reason contact sports need to continue to train in-season is because your larger muscles are like a personal “body armor” to help cushion, absorb blows and external impacts. Strength training in season will help prevent atrophy of the muscles so these muscles can continue to be personal protection for your body.

“A great example of in season training is during the 2016 NFL football postseason, the New England Patriots were in the weight room squatting 80% of their max in the week leading up to Super Bowl LI.”

3. Stay Healthy

No matter what sport you participate in, at some point during the season you are going to have aches and pains throughout your body.The best treatment for these aches and pains is to get moving and get blood flowing through these body parts. A properly programmed strength program will help you with the soreness, get the joints of the body moving through a full range of motion, and keep you ready to perform on gameday. If you want to have a successful season for the entire duration of the year and not just at the beginning of the season. Then you need to take care of your body and continue to strength train during your athletic season.