THE majority of the fit Doncaster Rovers players reported back for the special ‘day clinics’ run by the club last week.
In a departure from last season, when players were required to report back for three days, the players have had to spend just one day back at the club’s training ground during their summer break.
“They all looked in good shape,” said Rovers fitness coach Ross Burbeary, who will put Mark Wilson, James Coppinger and James O’Connor through their paces at a day clinic on their return from Peru, where they are currently involved in the fund-raising Inca Trek.
He added: “There’s not been a great deal of change in their fitness levels since the end of the season to be honest.
“The players, who had a choice of five dates, all did the same programme. They all reported at 10am and we had a look at their body composition and we checked things such as their weight and body fat,” said Ross.
“They then had a consultation with our nutritionist before joining me in a 45-minute running session. It was nothing too demanding - just some easy running to make sure that they have the leg flexibility to open up.
“They then went into the gym and did some strengthening work under my supervision.”
Ross, who is also the club’s sports scientist, says he has been in regular touch with the players during the close season, and will continue to do so until they report back for pre-season training the first week in July.
“I’ve either been ringing them or they’ve rung me,” he said. “I’ve been checking on any injuries they’ve got; how their holidays have gone and how their weight is looking and making sure that they are keeping on top of their nutrition and eating a proper diet.
“The players have all been given a schedule to follow during their summer break and we have an 80-20 rule.
“Eighty per cent of the time they’ll try and do really well and the rest of the time - particularly when they are away on holiday - they can let themselves go a little bit.
“We have to remember that they are going away to have a good time and you don’t want to spoil things for them by making things too strict.
“When you train hard, as the players do, you can let go for a couple of weeks a year. The time spent relaxing at this time of the year is just as important as doing the fitness work.
“Having said that, we want them to report back for pre-season training ready to hit the ground running and more or less carry on from where they left off in May.”