Wed, Jun 23rd 2010, 16:13
You don’t need to know sports to understand why soccer is “the beautiful game.” Just look at the players’ defined calves, rippling thighs and six-pack abs — it’s a physique you can think of as “the beautiful frame.”
So how do you get a World Cup-caliber body?
That’s what I went to the Maryland SoccerPlex in Germantown to find out. While the top men are in South Africa this summer, the women are gearing up to fight for the world title next year in Germany. And one of the stars of the dominant U.S. team is 30-year-old Abby Wambach, who plays for the Washington Freedom and could probably knock me over with her index finger.
“You can always get more physical,” she says.
It’s hard to believe that’s possible for the already fit Wambach, but the goal of the team’s training regimen is to become stronger, faster and even more accurate.
Since their season is underway (the Freedom’s next home game is July 4), they have scaled back their gym visits to twice a week. But strength and conditioning coach Calvin Poston manages to makes it count by having them stand on one leg to perform many of the exercises, including squats and biceps curls. Not only do they handle more weight that way, they’re also working on their stability, which is critical during games. Even though the focus of weightlifting is on maintenance and injury prevention, that doesn’t mean they’re not lifting hard. When Poston has the players grab dumbbells for two sets of chest presses, Wambach goes for 45-pounders.