What's happening to the 'midfield'.



Core Stability Part 3 


You should not be attempting this coaching session unless you have first completed Core Stability Part 1 & Part 2 in the Basic & Intermediate coaching sections.


So now we are finally onto Advanced work-outs. If you have followed the pattern of exercises correctly you will find that all the previous elements covered will now be extended. If you have rushed them without achieving the objectives or not developed the ‘form’ that I previously referred too, then re-considered any attempt at trying these. Go back to the Basic or Intermediate coaching sections.


swisscrunchThe first session we will do is a sitting crunch using the weighted ball and Swiss Ball. In the crunch position on the Swiss Ball, the weighted ball is thrown at normal pace above the head so that as you catch you will flatten your back towards the ground while keeping soles of the feet in their starting position. This motion will extend the lower back, the hip flexors and upper thighs. Accuracy of distribution to you is vital so that you only concentrate on the movement; however, you should include in your ‘form’ the distribution return so that the exercise can flow smoothly. Ten – fifteen reps.



The next stage is to work on the core strength and balance. As with previous exercise but this time the starting and return position is with feet raised off the ground with knees bent. I would recommend starting with a normal football and progressing to the weighted ball once perfected. Again distribution and holding form is key. Ten – fifteen reps.


bosuboxingIn the previous exercise with the BOSU we introduced a resistance element to maximise the balance capabilities. In this boxing on the BOSU exercise you will control your own balance while maximising your effort. The ankles and knees are going to be worked hard if you conduct this as if you were boxing normally. Start with alternate jabs and crossovers and once you have total control of your balance during the movements increase the speed and power. Do for two minutes.


Now that the balance is perfected transfer the exercise to volleys on the BOSU. Distribution to W and Scoop catching zones only. This is also a good mindset session if you are in the habit of ‘stepping back’ when catching a ball. Ten volleys building pace.


Returning to the ‘stability disc’ - Here we continue to receive volleys to the same catching zones mentioned but you will do this with one foot on disc with the other slightly bent towards the rear. Your balance and ankle/knee strength will be extended to their maximum. Alternate the standing leg on the disc while doing 5 volleys each leg. The disc can be increased or decreased in its air pressure which can change the difficulty level. Make sure you have mastered this set before doing so.


milopressWe have worked on the core and lower body so I want to finish off with a few exercises to the upper body using the Milokit. I like working with thismilowalk system because it can be used in resistance exercises using your own body weight. Easily attached to well supported goals the straps will help work many of the body areas. In these examples I am using the strength and balance developed to work the shoulders and arms but also bringing in the back and the core into play to ensure ‘form’ so that there is no collapse of body shape in the set. With the straps attached to the crossbar do a normal press-up while you are supported by one leg only. Alternate the supported leg and do as many repetitions as possible. Now placing your feet within the grip loops/handles, use the arms to ‘walk though’ so that you create an arch with the feet ensuring of course that the strap length keeps the feet from touching the ground.


As I said there are so many exercises and variations to the sets you can perform. Each have their purpose and if you have enjoyed using any of the examples or plan to incorporate into your own coaching then take the time to study other areas of core stability, resistance and balance training. Adapting them not only has the desired affects already mentioned but can also help, if clearly understood , the correction of faults in your skills or to those you coach. Many can coach and a lot offer training, there is a difference! That difference will reflect on improvement which should then lead to better performances.


A very special thanks goes to Nick Callaghan of Luminex Photography (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.) for all the photos on this and other articles on this site.