Football training is no joke. You build up your strength, increase your speed, learn the numerous positions, and survive the practices. Even if you manage to pull all these off, you still have to face teams that have worked just as hard, or even harder than you.
But it is rewarding when your team manages to hold that defense line or score that glorious touchdown. Nothing feels quite like it. So, you train, and you bleed, and you get better – at least until the outbreak.
Now, you’re most probably stuck at home, wondering when you’ll cross that 50-yard line again. While there are still no signs of the quarantine easing up, it’s important to keep that fire inside you burning.
Here are the things you can do to up your football game while you’re in lockdown.
Raise your overall fitness level.
One of the worst things for an athlete is being idle for a long time. Reversibility or muscle atrophy is one devastating result of inactivity. According to Healthline, muscles will ‘waste away’ when there is a lack of physical activity. You can usually see and feel that your muscles are smaller and weaker after going without exercise for a long time. This means, all those hours your spent training in the gym and on the field may go to waste if you stop working out now.
Maintaining your fitness is already challenging enough, given that you don’t have access to exercise equipment. But there are a lot of workouts you can still do in the comfort of your home. These exercises can range from casual to heavy.
Do the classic workouts like push-ups and sit-ups. Going up and down a staircase can be your cardio exercise. Be creative and use water jugs as weights for lifting. Here are a couple of ideas from the Olympic Channel to help you get started. You can even invite your family to join in, everyone needs to keep fit during this downtime.
Speaking of staying fit, a good and steady diet will also go a long way while you’re building your muscles. According to Men’s Health, eating a lot of protein and calories overall can help you. It’s easy to fall into the trap of just consuming junk food, particularly since you’re at home, but you have to stay focused on your goals and grow stronger.
Keep your head in the game.
Bordering on cliché, this sentence is especially applicable in sports. Being distracted can mean the difference between a win and an injury. It’s important that you maintain your hunger for the game. Spend this time watching football videos. Study how the professionals execute their plays and take notes. Having a better and clearer understanding of game strategies will give you an edge when you’re on the field. Broaden your perspective with videos like this NFL compilation of the best defensive plays by rookies.
This is also the perfect time to check on other aspects of your game like equipment. You’ll be surprised by how much a better pair of shoes or a custom mouthguard can help you gain the comfort and confidence you need to play better.
The most important thing right now is to make sure you don’t stay idle both in body and mind. Stay laser-focused and take this time to up your game.