Pre-season training is an important part of preparing teams and individuals for the season ahead. AFL Victoria’s Pre-season training guidelines are an essential read for any player, coach or parent looking to assist in the minimisation of injury.

Whilst AFL Clubs commence pre-season training in November/December, they are elite professional footballers who have dedicated facilities and professional coaching and conditioning staff to manage player-training loads.

At a community level, players have full time jobs, are often playing other sports in the off-season and generally play for the love of the game. In addition, facilities are generally shared with other sports and are difficult to access during the summer months.

At a junior level, children’s bodies are still developing and over-use injuries can be more prevalent in these formative years. The amount of training, particularly when they are often involved in other activities, is a key consideration in player welfare.

The AFL Victoria document provides recommended pre-season and in season training guidelines, the recommended number of sessions and their duration. For example, for Under 12 to Under 14 Teams pre-season training should consist of:

  • 6 – 8 sessions
  • Duration should be 60 – 75 minutes per session.
  • The training focus should be Skill / Game sense, Small sided games, Team play games and minimum fitness based activities.


Conditioning the body for the rigours of our game is essential for injury prevention and team performance. For more information download the PDF below.

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