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How to Gain Stamina for Soccer

Soccer players need both cardiovascular and muscle endurance in order to make it through a game without losing steam. Working on your endurance is important during the off season and when you're not playing regularly. It's also essential if you're a beginner and are having a hard time keeping up with other, more experienced players.

Step 1
Calculate your target heart rate. This is between 60 and 80 percent of your maximum heart capacity. To come up with that number, you can use an online calculator like the one available at the Mayo Clinic website (see Resources).

Step 2
Start a jogging and running program. Wear a heart rate monitor and make sure you hit your target heart zone during the whole routine. Work at the lower end of your zone for cardiorespiratory endurance and at the higher end for muscle endurance. Aim for at least two workouts of each a week. Cover between one and two miles each time.

Step 3
Jog dribbling the ball. Make two complete circles around the whole perimeter of the field trying to keep the ball close without sacrificing speed. This is a very good drill that can put your skills to the test while improving your endurance.

Step 4
Rest well. Make sure you have breaks in between days of training, so your muscles will have time to recuperate and perform better the next time you exercise. Also, sleep at least eight hours each night and try to go to bed and wake up at about the same time, so your body gets into a routine. The better rested you are, the more energy you'll have and the better you'll perform.

Step 5
Get involved in other sports or physical activities. Hiking, sprint running and mountain biking are all excellent activities to build stamina, as they require both muscular and aerobic endurance. Try varying your workouts from one week to the next, as each one works muscles in a different way and provides different challenges.