Port Adelaide will hold a pre-season camp on the Sunshine Coast from Thursday. Picture SARAH REED
Port Adelaide will hold a pre-season camp on the Sunshine Coast from Thursday. Picture SARAH REED

Port Adelaide stars to be pushed hard on Coast

AFL: Port Adelaide stars will be pushed through the "hardest" week of pre-season when they lace up on Sunshine Coast turf, says head of high performance Ian McKeown.

The club flies into the region on Thursday for a week-long training camp at the Maroochydore Multi-Sport Complex and Sports Hub at Lake Kawana.

It's the second year in a row Power has taken their pre-season camp to the Coast and it's set to be an intense, hard working trip for the playing group.

"It's absolutely the hardest week in terms of the amount of load they get through per day and the days are longer," McKeown said.

He said players would be pushed through two to three sessions each day with the humidity and heat only adding to the training's difficulty.

"Backing up day after day is pretty tough," he said.

He said it was crucial that players made the most of the trip with it to play a major part in getting the new year off to a flying start.

"What this does is it sets up our Christmas break and leads into January which is historically a big month of training before going into games which are really only five weeks away once we come back from the break," he said.

"It means this week is so much more important for these guys because if they don't step up and get work in now the step they're going to have take post-Christmas is just too great and risks multiply in terms of soft tissue injuries or injuries in general."

While the camp was important for fitness, McKeown said it was also a great chance for team bonding and getting on the same page in terms of strategy and game style.

"So, you have to be fully engaged at this time of year to make sure you have that right because you can't be playing catch up once the games start," he said.

"Modern AFL has become an incredibly intricate sport with lots of moving parts and guys have to be up to speed with every element of that.

"This is the time not only from a physical point of view but a technical and tactical point of view in which we get the biggest gains."

Power will host an open training session for the public at the Maroochydore Multi Sport Complex on Monday from 2.30pm.