A league of their own: Discover how Barça players are staying fit 

Ross Gibson
Lionel Messi TEAMtalk

La Liga has been given the green light, so the 2020-2021 season resumes following a 3-month Covid-19 lockdown. There’s much at stake, including the title, European races, not to mention the threat of relegation.

Matches will be disputed without supporters to prevent any further spread of the coronavirus. Football without fans is nothing, which is why the Primera Division wants to offer viewers the opportunity to hear the virtual crowd noises during the matches. 

FC Barcelona is currently sitting at the top of the table with 61 points, 2 ahead of Real Madrid, their long-standing rivals. The team returned to the pitch this Saturday, achieving a promising 0-4 win away at Mallorca. If the Blaugranas win the La Liga, this will be Lionel Messi’s 11th title. Spain wanted football to come back and this dream has come true. Dream accomplished, the real work lies ahead for players and coaches. 

Barça players are in impeccable shape for the La Liga comeback 

The global pandemic has taken a toll on sport, physical activity, and well-being. Individual and group training have been prohibited amid the COVID-19 crisis, so athletes have been forced to find ways to train at home. Fc Barcelona players are in fantastic shape after such a long break. Some describe them as ‘motorcycles’, while others refer to them as ‘bulls’.  Barça players sure have been active during confinement. And we’re not talking about the 10 touch challenge launched by Messi. 

Everyone from Ter Stegen to Arthur Melo and Martin Braithwaite has been showing off their home workouts, which include standard and highly unconventional exercises. Examples include triceps dips off the edge of the couch, jump squats in the backyard, and using sports bags instead of weights. While everyone else took things seriously, Arturo Vidal preferred to stick to playing basketball. Gerard Pique has succeeded in losing some weight and it’s not because he’s stressed. 

Extraordinary situations call for extraordinary measures. Training sessions on the bike or treadmill aren’t enough. Anyway, FC Barcelona’s squad for the La Liga couldn’t be in better shape and they’ll play really good football. The players have been doing a lot these past couple of months, taking advantage of the lockdown to train harder than ever and getting in shape for the season comeback. They’re hungry for trophies and are willing to go the distance with the Champions League. 

Lionel Messi shows us his intense home workout regime 

Our all-time favourite, Lionel Messi, is reportedly more motivated than ever. What’s sure is that the football player has been working out intensely, as he usually does. Messi’s exercise plan can’t compare to that of his former La Liga opponent Cristiano Ronaldo, but that doesn’t mean that he’s been slacking during confinement. The Barcelona star has been kind enough to show us his personal gym, where there’s no shortage of workout machines and weights. The gym features a row of treadmills by the side of a window that gives a view of the garden. The spinning machine is positioned next to a bunch of mats used for core exercises. 

It must have been difficult for the Barcelona star to train at home. After all, Messi is used to the best training-ground facilities. Maybe so, but it seems that the professional athlete can get fit without the trouble of leaving home. Messi spent most of his free time building up leg muscles by executing lunges. Losing leg muscle is the football player’s worst nightmare as it serves as an important base for endurance, strength, posture, and coordination. Side and lateral lunges work the muscles in the upper leg. 

As stated by Inside Bodybuilding, muscle memory can be fully restored in a matter of weeks. Thus, to restore muscular strength/power, football players should engage in full-body strength training to build muscle size. Footballers also need strong biceps, triceps, and shoulders (as well as legs). A well-designed off-field strength training program will certainly bring about improvements in performance. Messi gets a free pass because he’s super-fast. To maximise speed, the six-time Ballon d’Or winner resorts to exercises such as skipping ropes, pillar skips, and, of course, squats. 

Lionel Messi is no stranger to working out in the gym. Let’s all remember that one time when the Blaugrana star surprised everyone by training at a public gym in Argentina. He’s always doing his bit to stay in good shape. 

What about the rest of the Barça players? 

Each Barcelona player has a specific work plan to stay in shape. Interestingly, they receive individual plans, which have been adapted to the space, tools, and machines in their homes, even if they’re expected to come in for training. Let’s take a close look at what the most important football players do to stay in shape. 

Antoine Griezmann 

One of the recent additions to the Barça family, Antoine Griezmann is struggling to find his place among big talents such as Messi. The football player asserted that Barcelona isn’t the easiest place to play and there’s no denying that. Griezmann loves to practice bench press exercises, tempo training, and he does a lot of abs workouts. What’s more, the athlete challenges himself with the heaviest weight. 

What Antoine Griezmann does is concentrate on quality movements and build strength that he can later on transfer to the pitch. Although he has merely scored 8 goals the 2020-2021 season, he’s a great athlete and Barcelona has good reason to sign him. Time will prove that the transfer of the former Atlético Madrid star was a great move. 

Marc-André Ter Stegen 

Barça’s goalkeeper may do much less running around as compared to his fellow teammates, but the athlete certainly makes an effort to keep fit. When you play for FC Barcelona, you have to up your game – in other words, to try harder and improve the quality of what you’re currently doing. Since the core attributes of any goalkeeper are strength, speed, flexibility, and power, that’s what Ter Stegen has been focusing on. 

Luis Suarez 

Darren Burgess disclosed a while ago that Luis Suarez has never stepped foot inside a gym before joining Ajax Amsterdam, which undoubtedly comes as a surprise considering that he’s such a great physician. Well, he soon cultivated the habit of exercising, working out almost 6 days a week. The workout routine includes cardio exercises, bench press practice, standing cable flyes, leg curls, calf raises, lateral dumb bell raises, and more. 

Louis Suarez has managed to recover from the surgery he had to overcome an injury to the external meniscus of his right knee, which is good news. Barcelona haven’t yet decided if the player will be used now that the season has been resumed. It’s imperative to be cautious, as Suarez is one of the most important members of the squad