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Interviews

ROME PLEASED WITH FITNESS LEVELS

8 August 2020

Fitness coach Ben Rome has been impressed by the aerobic capability of Stuart McCall’s side - since beginning pre-season training last week.

The Bantams have started to step up their preparations, resuming contact training on Thursday, for the first time since March.

Rome admitted he was pleasantly surprised with how fit the players had kept themselves, following last season’s curtailment.

He said: “It has been good. We have been really quite surprised by how fit the players are and how they have come back.

“The lads have handled themselves extremely well in the off-season and returned in very good condition.

“It has been great because we have had to do the social distancing which the lads have been good with and adhering to.

“The main thing has really been a case of seeing where they are at and doing the fitness testing with them so we know how much more work we need to do to get up to the required standard.

“Aerobically, they have done well. In terms of strength work, they are a little bit down because of the lack of facilities and available gyms over this period, but we have been impressed by how they have gone about ticking over.”

After the first week of training, the City fitness coach has set up the bases for McCall’s men to begin building upon after commencing contact training on Thursday.

As the 2020/21 season draws nearer, he hopes to keep standards high, after a productive first week back on the grass.

He added: “The first week was just gentle. We did some steady passing drills, aerobic-based work and some strength work to put the foundations in place.

“I think, aerobically, the lads are fitter than they were last year, probably because they have not been away on holiday, they have just been trying to tick over.

“Obviously, we had that period of uncertainty where we did not know if last season was going to be finished so the lads were maintaining their fitness for quite a while before the season was curtailed.

“Now, we are into phase two - which is contact training - we can build on the standards we set in the first week and really start pushing towards the season’s start date.

“We now have a squad with fitness levels which we are happy with, it is just now about conditioning their bodies and being cautious.

“It is a case of gradually introducing the football more and just building that up slowly. What we do not want to do is overload on the football and cause self-inflicted injuries.”


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