By DCFC Guest Steve Haines 

Steve Haines




Steve Haines is the Head of Strength and Conditioning at Derby County Football Club.

Steve is proud to contribute to Myprotein’s ‘The Backroom’ series, giving you unparalleled access to the experts of elite sport in the UK.


Physical demands


To provide effective training for our players here at Derby County Football Club, we need to ensure it relates to the physical demands that are imposed by competitive matches.

Training needs to compliment match demands so that aerobic and anaerobic capacity can be appropriately developed without exposing the players to excessive training loads.


Martin Ipswich


Prescription of training loads is designed so to enhance the ability to perform repeated bouts of intense work and improve recovery time between these efforts.

In addition to this work, we devote a significant proportion of our training time to strength training with an aim to increase maximal strength and explosive power.


Aerobic Training


The majority of our aerobic training is completed using a football…

This can be done utilising small, medium or large sided games at varying durations.

Aerobic conditioning is done in this format so the coaching staff have the opportunity to maximise their contact time with players and increase the efficiency of training, by combining both technical and physical work.

Work durations vary from 3-8 minutes for 2-6 sets. Rest period between sets is between 1-2 minutes.


Anaerobic Training



Our anaerobic work, consisting of repeated sprints, is generally completed without the ball to ensure maximum intensity.

Players complete sprints ranging from 10-50m with varying set and rep schemes dependent upon the phases of training.

This can vary from 2-4 sets of 4-8 runs.



Strength Training



Strength training forms a vital component of our philosophy at Derby County. We believe strength and power share importance with on field conditioning, due to the number of accelerations and decelerations comprising forceful contractions, frequently against defensive pressure.

Players are required to complete between 1-3 sessions per week depending on training and fixture schedule.

Emphasis at the start of the week is on maximum strength and shifts to explosive power towards the end of the week.

Key lifts in our strength program are back squat (pictured above), trap bar deadlift, RDL, GHR, along with upper body pushing and pulling exercises.

Towards the end of the week our exercises consist of bodyweight plyometrics along with loaded squat jumps, MB throws, push presses and other upper body work.




Myprotein Supplements play a vital role in allowing our players to get the most benefit out of their training.


– Omega 3, and Alpha Men Super Multi Vitamins are taken daily with breakfast.


Myprotein Beta Alanine

– Vitamin D3 tablets are taken at lunch on the 1st training day of the week, alongside red meat.


– True Whey Protein is used post strength sessions, as well as other times throughout the day to maximise protein consumption.


– Beta Alanine is now supplemented daily and we believe it helps support our players’ high intensity work during the later stages of games.


Players consume 2g of Beta Alanine, 3 times per day.


Creatine Monohydrate is another popular supplement we use daily with certain individuals to increase maximal strength, power and repeat sprint ability.






Writer and expert

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