When you’re an international football star, training isn’t just confined to the pitch. For Marc-Andre ter Stegen, bodyweight training plays a key role in preparing him for important matches. To coincide with the launch of his new Freeletics Training Journey, Football Fit, Marc has put together a selection of his favorite bodyweight exercises and the tips and tricks you need to make sure you’re getting all the benefits.
When it comes to explosive power, there’s few exercises better than the trusty Squat Jump, as Marc knows well.
For this exercise, jump as high as possible off the floor by pressing through a flat foot. Your toes should be the last thing to leave the floor. Keep your eyes fixed on a point directly in front of you; this will ensure that your back stays upright. Aim to land in the same spot you took off from.
With this exercise, it’s not about doing the smallest jump from the floor to make the rep count. You want to develop power, so really aim to explode up from the floor with as much strength and speed as you can and remember, plyometrics should be seen and not heard - keep your landing soft.
Just like Squat Jumps, this exercise is all about explosive power. To protect your knees, make sure to land with a slight bend in your legs; this will make sure the impact of landing doesn’t harm your joints.
When you land, the toes should hit the ground first and the heel should be able to touch the floor lightly so that the calf muscles and the Achilles tendon are properly stretched and can benefit from the stretch-strengthening cycle.
Side Plank Twists
A goalkeeper needs to be able to be stable and strong, even in the most reactive of moments and this is where core training becomes so important. In an exercise like Side Plank Twists, your core is engaged both to balance your body in the position you’re holding and to rotate the trunk so as to execute the movement. It’s a double whammy.
Mobility, balance and leg strength are the name of the game with this exercise. Make sure to fully extend your hips and knees at the bottom of the movement, get your glutes below the top of the knee and keep your feet flat on the ground (this is where the mobility comes in). When done correctly, your glutes should be fully activated at every stage of the movement.
These are Marc’s favorite bodyweight exercises, but it doesn’t end there. In his new Freeletics Training Journey, Football Fit, Marc has worked alongside the Freeletics Coach team to develop a training plan that reflects his own training program and his love for bodyweight training.