Cardigan Mountain School A boarding and day school for boys in grades 6 through 9

Preseason Workouts

Dear Cardigan families,

We wanted to share a short note highlighting the importance of staying active throughout the summer (and other school breaks) to help prepare your son for his next season. 

Heel pain and other adolescent pain syndromes are prevalent in this age group. It is important to gradually increase physical activity especially if you are starting a new sport or have been sedentary for a while. That being said, the biggest culprits are sports that use cleats. I have linked three basic workouts that can help get you ready for tryouts. Please do the cardio workouts below or of your own choice using the following gradual introduction of cleats.

Days 1-5: warm up 5 min max with cleats then switch back to sneakers
Days 3-7: warm up + part of workout 10 min max wearing cleats then switch back to sneakers
Days 7-14: 15 min max
Days 10-20: 20 min max

Work up to 45-60 min of cleat wear as tolerated before arriving to campus. If at any time you experience discomfort, back off to the previous level and ice, ice, ice! Ice can be applied after activity for 15 minutes at a time. Activity should not be resumed until the skin has returned to normal temperature and the student-athlete has properly warmed up.

If you plan on joining the Cross Country Team and have rarely (or never) run for distance before please follow a gradual increase in activity in the footwear you plan on using for the season. Start with 5 minutes of running, then as tolerated, increase running times by 5 min increments to prevent too much stress on your body. 

Here are just a few examples of workouts you can do as you prepare to arrive at Cardigan. These are simple, effective and modifiable. You may choose to do something else but again be careful to increase intensity gradually.  Playing hockey all summer may keep your cardiovascular system healthy but it will not help you prevent the pain and inflammation you may experience switching from skates to cleats without a break-in period. (The same warning goes for skiers in the winter transitioning to cleats from boots after March break!)  Good luck, enjoy your summer and if you have any questions feel free to reach out to me at

All the best,

Ben Adams
Strength & Conditioning Coach