Weight Training for Soccer is Different

Weight training means increasing your overall strength rather than building maximum muscle mass.

The purpose with your soccer training is to have muscles that are strong, fast and also that have great endurance.

Weight training for soccer will help you not only maintain a high level of soccer fitness, but also help you recover from an injury faster.

Let’s take at the different parts of your body and how important they are for your soccer performance:

Stabilization of Your Core

The core is the area of your body from under your breast bone, the diaphragm, to the groin of your pelvic region.

The previous sentence may sound little silly but the core is simply your centre of gravity, responsible for maintaining your body balance.

Soccer players with a stable core are pretty hard to stop because their balance allows them to move fast in different directions.

One example on this is Diego Armando Maradona. He had a well developed core which helped him execute his soccer skills fast and with great results.


Strong legs mean faster legs. Your leg development is vital, not only for running but also for jumping, tackling, trapping, kicking and passing the ball.

Your leg muscles are the most important set when talking about soccer. Simply, with weak leg muscles your performance will not be any good.

Developing muscles of your abdominal and lower back region is important because you will use these for throw-ins, heading and for sprinting.

These areas will also be important if you are a goalkeeper. As a goalkeeper you will use your leg muscles for diving, jumping for high balls, sprinting out of the 18 yard box to clear the ball etc.


Your arms will also play a vital part when performing headers, throwing and shielding the ball.

If your position is goalkeeper, strong arms will help your with catching, punching and also with deflecting.

Furthermore, if your upper body is pretty well developed your will not likely to be injured when contact is made with one or several opponents.

Developing your arm muscles is an important part of your weight training, especially if you are a goalkeeper.

As you know, a goalkeeper needs to use his or her arms very often. This means that having underdeveloped arm muscles will decrease your performance.

Chest and Neck

These areas of your body are the link between your core and your legs, arms, head etc.

Developing your chest muscles is not as important compared to your leg muscles.

However, to maintain a good overall strength you should involve some reps for chest training.

Relevant Tips

You should see weight training as mere component of your overall soccer performance.

You will not become a good soccer player only through weight lifting. However, it is a good practice to involve it in your regular soccer training.

You may for example do some weight exercises 15-20 min before and after your regular soccer session.

My experience is that lifting weights is a pretty common in pre-season training habit.

Keep in mind that preseason training is used to get you ready for the coming season from a physical standpoint.

Keep in mind that training with a ball should always be your primary objective, no matter what your coach says.