At Nxtep, we know the dedication and drive that it takes to succeed in football – even at an amateur level, so we have devised this specialised football conditioning personal training programme to help you reach your full potential as a footballer.



Written by

Chris Nicklin is a certified Personal Trainer with over 7 years' experience, and the owner of Nxtep Personal Training. Chris qualified from Edge Hill University with a Bachelor of Science (BSc) degree in Sports Coaching and Performance Development, and has delivered over ten thousand one-to-one Personal Training sessions.

Updated 17/11/2023

As a personal trainer with many years of experience, I have seen firsthand the benefits of personal training in improving football performance. This page explains our dedicated Personal Training Football Conditioning Programme, helping you understand the principles, benefits, and methods behind effective football conditioning.


Check out our great Google reviews!

Patrick SmithPatrick Smith
06:47 05 Jun 24
Joined Nxtep under the 6 week transformation plan and had great results. Chris is a great PT with plenty of experience and skill.
Sarah RaoSarah Rao
07:30 30 May 24
20:41 07 May 24
The “personal trainer” at this establishment is very unprofessional and will fat shame people. I do not recommend you will be judged.Edit: No email was left to contact. Leave an email so we can discuss further thank you.
Paul CorriganPaul Corrigan
12:26 10 Mar 24
Sadly I'm leaving the area and would love to take Nxtep with me. I attend the small classes. Chris has created a unique venue that would be hard to match anywhere. The environment is warm and friendly. The sports science work that Chris does behind the scenes to prepare the classes is immense, so that we don't have to worry about it. Just plug and go. Though education is always at hand if required. The classes can be hard work (results driven) but always fun. The equipment is of the highest standard. I've always been around sports but have never experienced anything so positive and rewarding. At 57 there is no way I would ever have thought I'd lift such heavy weights or complete these vigorous exercises. Chris gets you there incrementally and safely but always with great humour. He uses a truly interactive App that plots your progress. A fitness App that actually works, who knew!!Also the clients are lovely and incredibly supportive of each other. Well bloody done Chris!
Aidan McGearyAidan McGeary
07:50 27 Feb 24
Over the past alomost 3 years, Nxtep has been central to my personal growth. Chris and his clients make up a fantastic community of people who have helped me develop in many ways. No one lifts a single kg on my behalf or runs a step for me, but as part of a positive and nurturing environment I have been able to consistently, week in, week out, exceed my expactations of what I am capable of. The Physical and mental benefits I have experienced since being a part of this community have been game changing and I owe them a great deal. Aidan.
Alana McgladeAlana Mcglade
17:44 20 Feb 24
Chris has been absolutely amazing at supporting me on my fitness journey. Everything is tailored to the individual so it suits everyone no matter what stage you're at. There's a really supportive environment that I haven't experienced elsewhere and the flexibility Chris has shown to me when needed has been amazing. Would never go anywhere else now!
Ashleigh PattersonAshleigh Patterson
20:07 18 Feb 24
CHRIS AND LUCA YOU ARE AMAZING AT WHAT YOU DO.At one point i couldnt walk up the stairs... after been hospitalized and locked in a room for nearly a month at pinderfields I was diagnosed with severe asthma to been under observation for COPD at 30 years old and still living everyday with it now, I decided to make a change. I moved to Cheshire I joined @nxtepknutsford and in a matter of months I was competing at @turfgames with the gym familyI cannot thank everyone enough who has been on my journeyNow at 32 I can lift 110kg on a deadliftI can run .... some sort of distance and always improving as much as my lungs will carry me.Never give up and push to be betterWe saw. We came. I conquered! 🏆
Steven ThompsonSteven Thompson
07:40 15 Feb 24
The model works for me , small group of less than 6 with a dedicated trainer . Have used gyms for many years but this model works for me . Complete professional instruction at all times . All about correct technique and protecting back etc . Plus there is no escape - maximising every session and getting maximum benefits . A real community approach .
deborah walkerdeborah walker
10:08 12 Feb 24
Always a great session with Chris .Come away feeling fab
Iain FountainIain Fountain
12:04 06 Feb 24
Have been training regularly each week since October at Nxtep and just wanted to give some feedback on my experience which has been nothing short than excellent. Chris, Luca and the team have provided one and one expertise, techniques, dietary plans to help with weight loss, build lean muscle and improve fitness. Can’t shout their praises enough. Good job Nxtep.
Hannah ThrelfallHannah Threlfall
14:10 10 Nov 23
I signed up for the 6 week body transformation initially to help me get my pre baby body back after gaining a lot of weight through pregnancy. I lost 8.6kgs in the 6 weeks and have since renewed my membership to continue with my progress and I’m almost down 10kgs in total only 2kgs away from my pre pregnancy weight. I have always hated going to the gym and would dread going initially but now I am 8 weeks in, training 3x per week and feeling fitter and much happier in myself it is something I definitely want to continue. I feel it has really changed my lifestyle and I am making healthier choices everyday with a much more positive outlook, my family have commented that the old Hannah is back as before I felt I’d lost myself since becoming a mum for the first time. Chris and Luca are incredibly knowledgeable about anatomy which was very important to me after having a C-section and I have seen huge improvements in my core and lower back stability. I am also enjoying the new friends I am making from the sessions and never thought I’d say it but I’m looking forward to continuing the training long term and being in the best shape of my life!!
Katie MorrisKatie Morris
08:05 15 Sep 23
I've really enjoyed the community at Nxtep. I've never been this thrilled get up before 7am to attend the gym. Chris and Luca are brilliant and I feel I've come so far in the year since I started coming. Looking forward to more progress and the pride that comes with working hard
Lesley SneesbyLesley Sneesby
08:04 15 Sep 23
Thank you Chris and Luca for your amazing help, guidance and support in such a welcoming environment at Nxtep
15:47 03 May 23
I initially joined Nxtep to get a better grip on my fitness levels after yo-yoing for years with sporadic classes and runs. It was an excellent decision as the sessions are three times a week which quickly got me in a good rhythm. Chris and Luca are both fantastic and very patient with a newbie like myself who had never lifted weights before. They have really helped me understand fitness and weight lifting a lot better. They also adjusted any exercises based on my capabilities as I had an injured shoulder for a while, and with the rehab exercises they gave me that’s now back to normal. I can’t recommend Nxtep enough!
15:38 04 Aug 22
I've been working with the guys at Nxtep for about a year now; I originally joined thinking it would be a short-term thing to lose weight for my wedding.A year later and I'm married, 12kg lighter than when I first started, lifting much heavier weights and am in much better shape in general. Chris and Luca have been amazing with my training; they always challenge me to try new things and to push further, which is really helpful for someone who's training has always seemed to plateau in the past.They've also taught me about health and fitness as a lifestyle; there's so much more to it than lifting some weights or constantly being on a diet, and they always keep things new, fun and flexible. They're also really helpful and approachable guys; I've messaged them lots of times to ask for training tips and advice when I'm going to the gym outside of training hours, and they're always more than happy to help.
Jackie KingJackie King
19:38 17 May 22
I first met Chris in January 2020. I was 12 weeks pregnant with my first child. As a trained dancer, and teacher I was hoping to maintain my levels of fitness whilst minimising the risks of my pregnancy. My early dance training concentrated on training my limbs, while often neglecting my ‘centre’ or ‘core’. It wasn’t until a back injury in 2012 due to weak lower back muscles that my approach to training changed. When I first found out about my pregnancy, I worried about my back and how to keep it strong.Chris helped me through my pregnancy teaching me safe ways of keeping my core strong, helping with my postural alignment as well as addressing some muscular imbalances that I wasn’t aware I had. Most importantly, Chris gave me the confidence to continue training through pregnancy. I knew I was in safe hands. Chris is phenomenally knowledgeable in how our bodies work.May 2022, I am currently pregnant with my second child and still continuing to train with Chris at Nxtep. Luca has also joined the team and is a fantastic addition. They are a great team, and I am very lucky to be trained by them both. I would highly recommend anyone thinking about pre or post natal pregnancy training to consider Nxtep.
Sean WSean W
12:09 02 Apr 22
Before starting at Nxtep I would go through a cycle of starting to get fit, injuring my back, then avoiding exercise for fear of making it worse. The same happened when I started here, with my over eagerness to improve leading to the same old injury. Chris and Luca kept me motivated and coached me through the recovery process, allowing me to strengthen the areas susceptible to injury and enabling me to carry on where I’d previously have given up. Now I’m lifting ~100kg more than when I first started and the past few years of persistent back injury seem a distant memory. The guys have helped me with my nutrition, my outlook and overcoming what I previously thought I couldn’t. I can’t thank them both enough!
Paul KennedyPaul Kennedy
22:59 05 Nov 21
I’ve been working with Chris and the team at Nxtep, and the initially just wanted to get stronger and fitter somewhere local when the gym near work was no longer an option due to the pandemic. I know feel really confident handling weights and my diet. I recently saw myself in a film from before I started at Nxtep and other people couldn’t recognise me from me who didn’t know me well so, it definitely works! Highly recommended.
Jordan CraigJordan Craig
20:45 05 Aug 21
Training at Nxtep during Covid was tricky but Chris and Luca made it work! Started with training outdoors in the carpark before we were allowed to move indoors, it was always fun and I feel I made real progress.It never felt just like a business and always felt more caring, I was also doing it as part of my DofE to which Luca/Chris were very helpful with.I've had to stop due to other focuses in life but I've got some real fond memories of the time and am hoping to go back later if I can!
ryan unwinryan unwin
20:29 28 Jul 21
Great personal trainer, his sessions are great and really push you into great mindset to achieve your goals, great knowledge of the body aswell! Would definitely recommend!!
David VDavid V
17:54 22 Oct 20
Wanted to improve all round fitness especially strength and conditioning so contacted & met with Chris.....was very impressed with his approach and was motivated to getting started & looking forward to the challengeChris was fundamental to me in making the nutrition and exercise changes required to achieve goals.... inspiring, motivational, encouraging & supportive he is great to work with......regular tracking & updates help me to stay focused..... Chris is easy to get along with and the sessions are challenging but enjoyable.....

Why Do Footballers Benefit from Personal Training?

Footballers, whether amateur enthusiasts or professional athletes, can greatly benefit from the guidance and expertise of personal trainers. Here’s why:

Tailored Training Plans

We have designed a personal training programme that is specifically tailored to the individual needs and goals of footballers. These plans take into account the player’s position on the field, strengths, weaknesses, and areas requiring improvement. A one-size-fits-all approach simply doesn’t cut it in football conditioning. Personalised plans ensure that you work on the aspects of your game that matter most.

Maximising Potential

Personal trainers such as ourselves are experts in football-specific conditioning. We understand the physical demands of the game and know how to help players reach their full potential. Whether it’s improving speed, agility, endurance, or strength, trainers can identify areas for improvement and design workouts to address them.

Injury Prevention

Injuries are an unfortunate reality in football. We can help you reduce the risk of injury by incorporating exercises that strengthen muscles, improve flexibility, and enhance proprioception (awareness of body position). We also educate players on proper warm-up and cool-down routines, which can be crucial in preventing injuries.

Accountability and Motivation

Consistency is key in football conditioning. We provide the necessary accountability and motivation to ensure you stick to your training plans. Knowing that a trainer is monitoring your progress and pushing you to your limits can be a powerful motivator.

Mental Conditioning

Football is as much a mental game as it is physical. Personal trainers like us can work on the mental aspect of football, helping players build confidence, focus, and resilience. Mental conditioning can be the difference between success and failure on the pitch.

Enhanced Endurance, Strength, and Agility

Football is a demanding sport that requires players to cover large distances, change direction rapidly, and engage in physical duels. Conditioning programmes are designed to build your endurance, boost your strength, and increase your agility, ensuring you can maintain peak performance throughout the match.

Monitoring Progress

Personal trainers use various tools and assessments to track a player’s progress. This data-driven approach allows for adjustments to training plans as needed, ensuring continuous improvement. Progress tracking also provides players with tangible evidence of their development.

Time Efficiency

Even amateur and semi-pro footballers can have demanding schedules, and personal training can be a time-efficient way to achieve their fitness goals. We can design workouts that maximise results in a shorter time, allowing players to balance training with other commitments.

Personal training is not just for elite athletes; it’s perfect for anyone looking to excel in football. The individualised attention, expertise, and support provided by personal trainers can significantly enhance a player’s performance, reduce the risk of injuries, and help them achieve their footballing goals.

At Nxtep Personal Training, our dedicated team of trainers is ready to assist you in your journey towards excellence on the pitch. Contact us today to experience the benefits of personalised football conditioning. Your success is our goal!


Understanding Football Conditioning

Before diving into the specifics of football conditioning, let’s define what it entails. Football conditioning is a specialised form of fitness training that focuses on developing the physical attributes required for football. It involves a combination of strength training, speed and agility drills, cardiovascular exercises, and flexibility work.

At Nxtep Personal Training, our team of expert trainers understands the nuances of football conditioning and tailors programmes to suit your individual needs. Our goal is to help you reach your full potential on the field.

The Science Behind Football Conditioning

Football conditioning isn’t just about working up a sweat; it’s a science. To get the most out of your training, it’s essential to understand the physiology behind football-specific fitness. Here are some key principles:

Physiology of Football-Specific Fitness

Aerobic Fitness: Football requires players to cover significant distances during a match. Aerobic fitness, achieved through cardiovascular exercises, helps players maintain high-intensity efforts throughout the game.

Anaerobic Power: Short bursts of intense effort, like sprints and tackles, are common in football. Anaerobic power training improves your ability to generate quick bursts of energy.

pexels-aidan-roof-3041176 (1)

Principles of Periodization

Periodization is a structured approach to training that has gained prominence in the world of sports science, including football conditioning. It involves breaking down the training year into distinct phases, each with its own specific goals, training intensities, and durations. The aim is to optimise performance by peaking at the right time, whether it’s for a crucial match, a tournament, or the entire football season. Here are the key principles of periodization and how they apply to football conditioning:

1. Macrocycle, Mesocycle, and Microcycle

  • Macrocycle: This is the longest training phase, typically spanning an entire football season or a significant portion of it. It sets the overall objectives for the season, such as improving strength, endurance, or speed.
  • Mesocycle: Within the macrocycle, there are shorter mesocycles, which last several weeks to a few months. Each mesocycle has a specific focus, such as building strength during the pre-season or maintaining endurance during mid-season.
  • Microcycle: The microcycle is the shortest training phase, usually lasting a week. It outlines the daily training routines and exercises. Microcycles can vary in intensity, with some weeks focused on recovery and others on high-intensity training.

2. Progressive Overload

Progressive overload is a fundamental concept in periodization. It involves gradually increasing the training load to challenge the body’s adaptive capabilities continually. In football conditioning, this means progressively increasing the intensity of workouts over time to stimulate muscle growth, improve endurance, and enhance overall performance.

3. Specificity

Football conditioning is all about preparing the body for the specific demands of the game. Therefore, each phase of periodization should align with the unique requirements of football. For instance, during the pre-season, the focus might be on building aerobic fitness and strength, while the in-season phase concentrates on maintaining fitness and agility.

4. Variation

Periodization incorporates variation in training to prevent overuse injuries and mental burnout. It involves changing exercises, altering training intensities, and incorporating different types of workouts, such as strength training, speed drills, and agility exercises. This variation keeps training fresh and stimulating.

5. Peaking

The ultimate goal of periodization is to ensure that footballers peak at the right time. For example, a player may need to reach peak fitness and performance for an important tournament or during the latter stages of a competitive season. This is achieved by carefully timing the high-intensity phases of training to align with these critical events.

6. Recovery and Adaptation

Rest and recovery periods are essential in periodization. Intense training phases are followed by recovery weeks to allow the body to adapt and reduce the risk of overtraining. Adequate sleep, nutrition, and hydration are vital during these periods.

7. Monitoring and Adjustments

Periodization relies on continuous monitoring of a player’s progress. This may involve fitness assessments, performance metrics, and feedback from the player. Trainers use this data to make adjustments to the training plan, ensuring that it remains effective and aligned with the player’s goals.

In summary, the principles of periodization in football conditioning provide a structured and scientific approach to training. By breaking the training year into well-defined phases, progressively challenging the body, and tailoring workouts to the specific demands of football, periodization helps players reach their peak performance when it matters most. Nxtep Personal Training incorporates these principles into our football conditioning programmes to ensure that you achieve your goals on the pitch.


How our Football Personal Training Programme Works

Assessing Football Fitness

Effective football conditioning starts with a thorough assessment of your current fitness level and football-specific goals. Our trainers will conduct pre-training assessments to identify your strengths and weaknesses. This information allows us to create an individualised training plan that aligns with your objectives.

Football Conditioning Exercises

Now, let’s get into the nitty-gritty of football conditioning exercises. These workouts are carefully chosen to address the unique demands of football:

  • Strength Training

Strength is the foundation of football conditioning. Our trainers will guide you through exercises that target major muscle groups, enhancing your overall power.

  • Agility Drills

Football is all about quick movements and changes in direction. Agility drills improve your ability to move swiftly and fluidly on the pitch.

  • Speed Work

Outpacing your opponents can be a game-changer. Speed training focuses on developing your sprinting ability.

  • Endurance Training

Football matches can be physically demanding, especially when they go into extra time. Endurance training ensures you have the stamina to perform at your best from the first whistle to the last.



Mental Conditioning for Footballers

Football is not just a physical battle; it’s a mental one as well. The ability to stay focused, confident, and resilient in the face of challenges can be the difference between success and defeat on the pitch. At Nxtep Personal Training, we understand the crucial role that mental conditioning plays in football, and we are committed to helping our clients develop the mental strength needed to perform at their best. Here’s how we assist footballers in their mental conditioning journey:

Goal Setting and Visualisation

One of the first steps in mental conditioning is setting clear, achievable goals. We work closely with footballers to define their objectives, whether it’s improving performance in specific areas of the game or excelling in crucial matches. Once the goals are established, we employ visualisation techniques to help players mentally rehearse success. Visualising successful performances can boost confidence and reduce anxiety.

Positive Self-Talk

Negative self-talk can undermine a player’s confidence and focus. We teach footballers to replace self-doubt with positive affirmations and constructive self-talk. This shift in mindset can have a profound impact on performance, allowing players to maintain a positive and resilient attitude on the field.

Stress Management

Football can be a high-pressure sport, and stress management is essential. We provide strategies for managing pre-game nerves and coping with the stress of competition. Techniques such as deep breathing, mindfulness, and progressive muscle relaxation can help footballers stay calm and focused under pressure.

Resilience Training

Resilience is the ability to bounce back from setbacks, and it’s a vital aspect of mental conditioning. We work with footballers to develop resilience by reframing failures as opportunities for growth. Learning from mistakes and setbacks is crucial for long-term success in football.

Concentration and Focus

Maintaining concentration and focus during a fast-paced football match is challenging. We teach techniques to improve attention control and focus on the task at hand. By sharpening their mental focus, footballers can make split-second decisions and react quickly to game situations.

Emotional Regulation

Emotions can run high on the football field, and emotional regulation is essential for maintaining composure. We provide strategies for managing emotions such as frustration, anger, or anxiety. Emotional control enables players to stay level-headed and make rational decisions in the heat of the game.

Post-Match Analysis

After matches or training sessions, we encourage players to engage in constructive post-match analysis. Reflecting on performance, identifying strengths, and areas for improvement, and setting action plans for the future can enhance a player’s mental resilience and commitment to growth.

Mental Conditioning Workouts

Just like physical workouts, mental conditioning requires practice. We incorporate mental conditioning exercises into our training programmes. These exercises challenge footballers to push their mental boundaries and develop a robust mental game.

Individualised Approach

At Nxtep Personal Training, we recognise that each footballer is unique, with distinct mental strengths and challenges. Our trainers take an individualised approach, tailoring mental conditioning strategies to match the player’s specific needs and goals. Whether you’re looking to overcome performance anxiety, boost confidence, or enhance focus, our team is here to support you.

In conclusion, mental conditioning is a critical component of football success, and Nxtep Personal Training is dedicated to helping footballers strengthen their mental game. By integrating mental conditioning techniques into our football conditioning programmes, we empower players to face challenges with confidence, resilience, and a winning mindset. Your mental strength is the key to unlocking your full potential on the football pitch, and we’re here to help you every step of the way.


Nutrition for Footballers

Nutrition is the fuel that powers a footballer’s performance on the pitch. What you eat directly impacts your energy levels, endurance, recovery, and overall well-being. At Nxtep Personal Training, we recognise the critical role that nutrition plays in football conditioning, and we are dedicated to helping our clients make informed dietary choices to enhance their game. Here’s how we support footballers in their nutritional journey:

Personalised Nutrition Plans

Every footballer has unique dietary requirements based on their position, training intensity, and individual goals. We create personalised nutrition and meal plans tailored to each player’s specific needs. Whether you’re aiming to build muscle, increase endurance, or maintain optimal body composition, our nutrition plans are designed to align with your objectives.

Balanced Diet Guidance

A balanced diet is the foundation of football nutrition. We educate footballers on the importance of consuming a variety of foods to ensure they get all the essential nutrients. This includes carbohydrates for energy, protein for muscle repair and growth, healthy fats for overall health, and vitamins and minerals to support various bodily functions.

Hydration Strategies

Proper hydration is crucial for performance and recovery. We provide guidance on staying adequately hydrated before, during, and after training and matches. Dehydration can lead to decreased endurance and increased risk of injury, making it essential for footballers to understand their fluid needs.

Pre-Match and Post-Match Nutrition

The timing and composition of meals before and after matches or training sessions can significantly impact performance and recovery. We offer recommendations for pre-match meals to ensure players have the necessary energy and post-match nutrition to promote muscle recovery and reduce fatigue.

Supplementation Guidance

While a balanced diet should ideally provide all the necessary nutrients, some footballers may benefit from supplements. We offer advice on safe and effective supplementation, helping players make informed choices when considering vitamins, minerals, and sports-specific supplements.

Energy Management

Football matches can be physically demanding, requiring sustained energy throughout the game. We teach players how to manage their energy levels by incorporating carbohydrate-rich foods into their diet and timing meals appropriately to avoid energy crashes during matches.

Weight Management

Maintaining an optimal body composition is essential for footballers. Whether a player needs to gain muscle mass, lose body fat, or maintain their current weight, we provide guidance on achieving and maintaining the right body composition for peak performance.

Recovery Nutrition

Recovery is a vital component of football conditioning. We advise footballers on post-workout and post-match nutrition strategies to facilitate muscle recovery, reduce inflammation, and replenish energy stores, ensuring they are ready for the next training session or match.

Individualised Approach

Nutrition is not one-size-fits-all. We take an individualised approach, considering each player’s unique dietary preferences, allergies, and restrictions. Our goal is to create nutrition plans that are both effective and enjoyable, ensuring players can adhere to them in the long term.

In conclusion, nutrition is a cornerstone of football success, and at Nxtep Personal Training we are committed to helping footballers optimise their dietary choices because with the right nutrition on top of the right workout plan, you can elevate your game on the football pitch and achieve your goals with confidence.

Choosing Nxtep Personal Training

At Nxtep, we take a unique approach to football conditioning. We are dedicated to your success and will work closely with you to achieve your football goals. To get started with our football conditioning programme, simply reach out to us via our contact form or pick up the phone and call us on 01565 228467. Your journey to football excellence begins here.

Quick Enquiry

Have a question? Ask us anything here.