The Nike Gridiron workout program, designed for football players, is referred to as the SPARQ training program. Developed by Chris Carlisle, strength and conditioning coach for the Seattle Seahawks, the program consists of detailed workouts broken down into different phases. The year-round program is designed to increase your overall performance as a football player, regardless of your ability or level. With the potential for serious injury, always consult your physician before starting a training program.
The three basic phases of the Nike Gridiron and SPARQ training program are the pre-season, in-season and off-season workouts. Each phase has a specific function to maximize performance while improving strength and football ability. Pre-season programs are designed to prepare you for the upcoming season while the in-season program continues the progress from the pre-season workouts while allowing your body to recover from the games. Off-season workouts are designed to repair your body while working on specific skills.
Each training workout consists of certain exercises, drills and movements based on the goal of the workout. Every workout starts with a warm-up that typically features dynamic exercises to prepare your body and muscles for action. On-field drills utilize explosive movements to improve athleticism and weight-lifting exercises build strength, speed and power. According to the Nike Football website, during pre-season training, workouts consist of three sets of clean pulls, squats and bench press along with auxiliary lifts and range of motion exercises. In-season workouts, however, utilize circuits to increase the intensity of the workout through performing a specific number of repetitions and sets based on time.
Pre-season and off-season workouts will occur more frequently than in-season workouts. You will perform six workouts total during the pre-season schedule but will train only two times per week during the in-season program. Most of the pre-season workouts are two-a-days, meaning you will have two workouts in one day. In-season training schedules will typically include the first workout on Sunday or Monday with the second workout on Tuesday or Wednesday allowing your body to recover before game day, according to Nike Football.
The Nike Gridiron and SPARQ training program features a workout log to record sets, repetitions, weight and other workout information. Use this log to track your overall performance and improvements. Nike recommends combining the workout program with proper nutrition to achieve the best training results. With proper nutrition, you will have the energy to perform at a high level during the workout and the essential nutrients required to recover between workouts.
Before You Begin
Consider your fitness level, athletic ability and football position before starting the Nike Gridiron and SPARQ workout program. The programs are designed to accommodate every football position and ability. For example, combine the offensive and defensive lineman, linebackers and tights, and skill players such as quarterbacks, running backs, wide receivers and defensive backs. You can also divide the workout by ability level, such as varsity, junior varsity and freshman.