For the past 6 years I have been the strength coach for the London High School football team. I get asked quite a bit about how we train and what we do. We use 5/3/1 philosophies and programming to train the athletes main lifts and adjust the volume work to suit the season and the goals but to sum up our strength training in one statement: “Bodybuild the Upper and Athlete the Lower.” This has worked well for us.
Our main lifts for our lower body, the squat and the trap bar deadlift are programmed to be done with power. We don’t want missed reps or slow reps. We want speed and precision. This also includes stair sprints, hill sprints, various jumping movements and DB squats.
The upper body training is done to build muscle or build armor. As I always say to the kids, “We want to win the battle off the Bus.” In other words, I want our kids’ upper bodies to look muscular. We do this with high volumes of bench presses, presses, push-ups, dips, chins/pull-ups, DB pressing, DB rowing, barbell curls, plate raises, shrugs and several other movements. The goal is to build as much muscle as possible in our Prom Muscles.
Football is an awesome, aggressive sport. Make sure you increase the strength, speed and durability of the human projectiles.