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The Value Of Strength And Conditioning To Avoid Costly Injury In Football

How can teams and players use strength and conditioning to avoid injury? We explain this in more detail and unpick some critical areas to strengthen. 


A new signing looks like the start of something good. In the first couple of games, your team’s new shiny player is lifting the team, increasing performance, and you’re winning more games. Then, a fumble with the ball or a challenge sees a stretcher and more physios that you’re comfortable with running onto the pitch. The verdicts are back, knee surgery and out for the rest of the season – Disaster. 

It happens, unfortunately. So, how can teams and players use strength and conditioning to avoid injury? We explain this in more detail in this article and unpick some critical areas to strengthen. 

How to judge value

When we consider the value of strength and conditioning to avoid costly injury in Football, we consider the value for the player, the club, the results, and many other things. This article will cover some of these costs and why strength and conditioning are so crucial to football. Before this, it is worth considering the level of investment in players, even younger players like Giorgio Scalvini at 43m. We reported that Liverpool is looking to sign Hincapie for a similar amount. That shows the incredible financial commitment of players and why protecting their health and performance is paramount – Indicated by the number of nutritional coaches, physios and therapists attached to clubs.


One of the worst examples for those old enough is precisely what we are outlining above. Luc Nilis played for Aston Villa, but his career was cut short when a collision with Ipswich goalkeeper Richard Wright resulted in a compound fracture to his right leg. Having just joined Aston Villa and scored one goal in the first two games, and only his third outing for Villa, he now had to face a horrific leg injury. After intense surgery and rehabilitation, there were fears that his leg might have to be amputated following infection. Eventually, Nilis was forced to retire early, later taking on a coaching role at PSV Eindhoven, but this shows the importance of strength and conditioning as strength training improves bone density and both tendon and muscle mass, which could have helped to avoid or limit the extent of his injury. Professional clubs are using exercise and nutrition because more is known now and supported by detailed research. 

How it happened

What are the top 3 most popular injuries in football? 

This question is asked across the internet, and there might be better terms of phrase than popular. However, we have curated the most frequent football injuries according to various sources, including

Hamstring Strain –  Described as a strain but often a tear, typically caused by over-extension during running. They have classifications, first, second and third-degree strain. Warm-up is critical to avoid hamstring strains, and stretching exercises help strengthen and condition the surrounding muscle and tissue. The hamstring is the muscle at the rear of the thigh. Studies proved that 40% of Premiership injuries in 2004/2005 were Hamstring related, according to PhysioRoom’s Analysis of Injuries.  

Sprained Ankle  – Usually, a sprained ankle results from ligament damage caused by rolling or sudden impact such as a tackle or tumble. In this instance, rehabilitation is often with a physiotherapist, who can improve the ankle function. Wobble boards are also used to strengthen the ankle and increase mobility. Using a Kettlebell on the foot and moving the ankle is an excellent prevention as it builds ankle strength, limiting the probability of severe sprains. This exercise is called a Kettlebell toe raise. Doing this, as well as other tib raises, can help negate this injury’s extremes. You can find Tib Bars at Mirafit.  

Knee Cartilage Tear – It is suggested that 12% of injuries in Football are related to knee cartilage damage. What causes it is having the knee bent and bearing weight, so a fast change of direction and leaning into the move could be more than enough to cause this type of injury, according to Physiotherapists. Knee strengthening can be performed using leg curl machines, GHD Machines and powerlifting. 

What is a serious injury in football? 

Anything that will impede your performance mid to long-term or anything that can take you out of training or a game. Setbacks like the example above are career-ending and, to some extent, life-changing, so it makes sense to put your best foot forward. Injury at any level is heartbreaking, especially when you put so much into the game, so this is why working on your strength and conditioning is so important, as it will pay dividends to avoid injury like this. 

How to avoid serious injury in football? 

According to

The best things to do are as follows:  

  • Strengthen lower limbs
  • Warm-up 
  • Cool Down
  • Wear the right gear
  • Eat healthy
  • Get enough rest 

Bupa is a leading authority in private healthcare in the UK. The first recommendation they make is to strengthen lower limbs. There is no denying the importance of strength and conditioning when avoiding injury. The warm-up and warm-down is where much of the work is done because it helps overextend the joints and takes them beyond their typical limits, which happens during an injury. If you eat well, your muscles will have the right balance of energy, nutrients and proteins, which can also help reduce the chance of a tear or strain, as the muscle is more flexible. 

Next steps

If you are serious about your game and want the best opportunity to avoid injury, make strength and conditioning a significant part of your training. A committed effort to improve your mobility and strength in your legs, joints and lower back will help to avoid alarming injury and major disruption to you and your game. We hope that you found this article helpful. To read more football-related articles, click here for the premiere league talk.

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