Shrimpers get fit: 'Last year the players we did the tests and programmes for were all shipped out!'
Southend United strength and conditioning coach Laurence Bloom has given the Shrimpers squad a strict schedule to get in good shape for the season start after their fortnight off. Blues' strength and conditioning coach Laurence Bloom has been talking about his plans to get the players in the best shape possible to start the new 2011/12 season.Bloom told www.echo-news.co.uk: "The players have been given two weeks rest and then they all have their own five week programmes to follow. They have been given individual programmes which concentrate on certain areas and also keep them ticking over so they are still in good shape when they report back in for the start of pre-season training. They will work on their strength and aerobic fitness and it's important to put the time and effort in." The complete squad were tested on their fitness before the end of the season with their progress will be scrutinised on their first day back. Bloom continued: "The lads all know what they have to do and what levels they need to reach. If they don't reach them then they will get fined and will be required to attend extra training to get them up to the level of fitness which is expected and required from them." The Shrimpers struggled last pre-season as manager Paul Sturrock put together a squad in a very short space of time. But there should be no such problems this time around. Bloom concluded: "Last year it was difficult because the players we did the tests and programmes for were all shipped out. Players were coming in with different levels of fitness and different stages of pre-season but this time everything is finalised and hopefully we will notice the difference when the games start."