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Sams Blog - Off Season

12:00am, Thursday 4 November 2021

Over the course of the season we will be posting a number of blogs by Sam Donaldson a footballer, father and Physiotherapist at the clubs great sponsor RHP Physiotherapy


Offseason, the start of pre-season!

The season was long and the body only just held up… or maybe it didn’t? Either way, now is the time to rest and recover. Here comes the conundrum.

“Rest” and “recover” often results in de-training and no actual return to normal for whatever injuries might have ailed you. By resting, your body adapts to what you are doing for that period of time. If you stop completely for two weeks, it is going to take upwards of four weeks to return to the level of fitness you had previously.

If you stop for six weeks, perhaps with the occasional gym session and fortnightly run, you can expect pre-season to suck more than ever. It is going to take your body more than 12 weeks to return to the fitness levels you achieved before resting.

So, what do you do? You don’t want to return to pre-season in worse shape than ever?

Now is the time to work on what you struggled with during the season. Foot pain, achilles pain, knee pain, back pain… these all will result in loss of muscle strength around the area as well as a change in movement patterns.

It’s time to speak to your physio about what you need to do to ensure these problems don’t recur next year. Perhaps ask what the minimum is you need to do to make pre-season hurt less.

No niggles or injury? Get to the gym more than once a week (1.5 times per week is enough).

Don’t like running? Some cross-training is perfectly fine. Short and sharp sessions (20 minute HIIT) for two sessions per week will keep you ticking over well enough.

If you’re not sure what is best for you, ask the question!

2022 AGM

12:00am, Thursday 28 October 2021

The 2022 club Annual General Meeting will be held on Saturday 27th November 4pm at the fields. Please contact the club if you are interested in registering for any position on the committe.

We will also be runnning an O35s tournament that day with BBQ and bar.

At a recently convened general meeting, the Commitee for Clairvaux Soccer Club voted for a small number of amendments to the club' s constitution.
The first was to amend some of the gender specific language in the constitution. Although referred to as a point in the constitution the use of the male pronoun throughout doesn't reflect our who we are as a club, so has been removed for non-gender specific language.
The second amendment is to extend the term of President to a maximum of five years as opposed to three, with a review to be conducted at five years. The committee felt that given the execution of a long-term vision for the club and the importance of the strategic relationship with Clairvaux Mackillop College that extending this period was important for maintaining continuity. The committee has added the review process to ensure that governance and standards are maintained.
Any member of Clairvaux Soccer Club will have the opportunity to vote at the AGM on these matters to be held at 27 November

Fathers Day at City Cave

Hayden | 12:00am, Thursday 19 August 2021

Get Dad back to "Super Status" this Father's Day with a City Cave gift card. Check out the great deals here...

Do Niggles Matter

Hayden | 12:00am, Tuesday 6 July 2021

Over the course of the season we will be posting a number of blogs by Sam Donaldson a footballer, father and Physiotherapist at the clubs great sponsor RHP Physiotherapy


Do niggles matter?

Yep. Unfortunately niggles do matter!

That tight calf, the pain in your knee that comes and goes, that annoying back pain that interrupts your day slightly. It might not affect your ability on the football pitch, but these niggles add up.

A recent Australian study included football clubs in NSW at various levels of competitiveness from NPL NSW and below. Players were asked to complete a questionnaire every week with a simple set of questions about whether or not they were in perfect physical condition.

Q1: Have you had any difficulty participating in normal training/ competition in the past week?
Q2: To what extent have you reduced your training volume due to the above?
Q3: To what extent has injury, illness or other affected your performance in the past week?
Q4: To what extent have you experienced symptoms/ health complaints during the past week?

Most of us would report something for at least one or two of those questions, even if the answer is “to a minor extent”

They also collected information about how much training each player was exposed to and when someone was actually unable to train or play due to injury or illness. These were called “Time-Loss” injuries, while reporting an injury but still training was called a “Non-Time-Loss” injury, otherwise known as a niggle.

The risk of a Time-Loss injury was 3.6 and 6.9 times higher when a “minor” niggle or a “moderate” niggle was reported in the week prior.

Amazingly, over 25% of players were reporting a niggle each week, not always the same person (but we all know that one person that’s always injured). This means that those players were far more likely to suffer an injury that keeps them out of the game in the next week!

So, what do you do about it?

Prevent. Here’s how.

Sams's Blog - Groin Pain

Hayden | 12:00am, Thursday 17 June 2021

Over the course of the season we will be posting a number of blogs by Sam Donaldson a footballer, father and Physiotherapist at the clubs great sponsor RHP Physiotherapy


Groin pain in football

The dreaded “Osteitis Pubis.” Often a cause for non-professional footballers to stop playing all together. This is one injury you would rather not have to deal with.

We now refer to this type of groin pain in a number of different ways, because we know a little more about it than we used to. This groin pain can be Pubic bone related, Adductor tendon related, Hip joint related or related to muscles of this hip or ligaments at the front of the pelvis. Each option needs to be addressed in different ways.

Fortunately, there are some wonderful options for preventing this groin pain!

If you haven’t already, check out some previous blog posts on Clairvaux FC to see what we recommend for other football related injuries, particularly Nordics for Hamstrings and FIFA11+ for general injury prevention.

And, if you haven’t got the gist of things already, you need to be stronger to prevent more injuries! Strength and movement quality are key.

In a sport like football, the primary skill is kicking a ball with brilliant accuracy. This requires a planting leg to be stable and a kicking leg to swing through. At the hip, the groin (adductor) muscles and hip flexor muscles are active throughout the swing and require very high levels of power.

Check out these exercises below to help bullet proof this part of your body and keep you on the park! Keeping on the park means you continue learning your craft. Continue to learn and you will only get better!


Sams's Blog - The Dreaded Hamstring Injury

Hayden | 12:00am, Sunday 4 April 2021

Over the course of the season we will be posting a number of blogs by Sam Donaldson a footballer, father and Physiotherapist at the clubs great sponsor RHP Physiotherapy



Is this still the call when you see someone at top speed simply fall in a heap?

Often, we see an athlete speeding up, or at their maximum, clutch at the back of their thigh. Sometimes they will take some awkward steps but inevitably they end up on the deck.

More often than not, this is a hallmark sign for an acute hamstring muscle injury.

Football is a game requiring the majority of the body to be in its peak condition. Muscle injuries are common, but the most common is the Hamstring.

Typically rendering the athlete unavailable to play for a minimum of three weeks, but up to eight weeks in some cases (or longer if it involves more than just that muscle).

During the competitive season (according to UEFA data), hamstring injury occurrence increases x3 fold compared to other muscle injuries. A typical squad might only suffer 2-3 injuries per season, but this is in the elite, highly trained athlete with all of the medical and sport science support available to them.

In reality, semi-professional squads an amateur team suffers these injuries at a rate of approximately 1 every 8-10 games. But with potentially up to 6 games missed, that is a massive impact on the squad for the season.

In positive news, you can cut this injury rate down by 51% simply by including one exercise into your week, for 3 sets of 5-8 reps, on two occasions per week (think, after training).

Problem is, once injured, we can’t reduce the severity of that injury by being better prepared with this increased strength. But cutting down the rate of injury by half is appealing, particularly when we only need to spend 2-3 minutes, twice a week on it!

So, what is this magical exercise? Well… check the image below. But, it is often considered that this is so effective simply because it’s so darn hard! If you’ve already got it in your off-field routine, then it might be worth considering more options (cue plug to physio…)

Sams's Blog - Proven Way To Improve Your Game

Hayden | 12:00am, Tuesday 16 March 2021

Over the course of the season we will be posting a number of blogs by Sam Donaldson a footballer, father and Physiotherapist at the clubs great sponsor RHP Physiotherapy


Want to improve your game? Play it.

The best way to improve your skills is to practice.

Practice often and with positive intent.

The time spent in training, learning your craft is truly the only way to keep improving.

But have you ever heard about ‘that young prodigy footballer whose career was ruined by injuries’?

The reason they never reached those dizzying heights in the game was because of a number of injuries. Those injuries kept the player away from training for weeks at a time. Add 2 or 3 of these injuries to a season and you can easily miss 3 months of training!

So to get better at your game, don’t miss training!

Consider a case you may know, such as Tom Rogic or Daniel Arzani. Both are players that had been predicted for a massive future in the game. Both, regrettably, have failed to reach the expectations. Don’t misunderstand me, they are both phenomenal players and far better than I could have ever dreamt of myself. But, one wonders how impressive their careers might have progressed had they been able to consistently train.

Injury prevention is like a long-term financial investment strategy. You consistently put some time (or money) into it, and although you can’t predict what the future holds, you can be sure that you’ll be in a far better place in the future for having done it rather than not.

So, what should you do?

There can be a lot of eye catching, ‘sexy’ or interesting programs you can follow, and frankly I’m sure they all have some merit.

In football, the FIFA11+ program is designed to be a warm-up before training sessions or games, that helps prevent injury, and support your footballing development!

At various levels of the game we now know that by performing the FIFA11+ exercises at least 1.5 times per week (or 3 times per fortnight), results in a reduction in injury rate of approximately 35%. This can even be enhanced by doing some added strengthening exercises after training sessions, reducing possibly up to 45% of the number of injuries suffered in a season.

So, if you want to ensure you can stay training and playing, it is well worth your while putting some time aside for strength, balance and movement control exercises designed for your game.

Not only will you personally be able to develop your skills, increasing your chance to play and develop, but you will also be ensuring your team has a better chance of success!

Win, win!


Sam's Blog - The Secret of a Successful Team

Hayden | 12:00am, Monday 1 March 2021

Over the course of the season we will be posting a number of blogs by Sam Donaldson a footballer, father and Physiotherapist at the clubs great sponsor RHP Physiotherapy


That’s right, there are a number of secrets. This one is clear as day, backed by science, but poorly utilised.

For a team to perform well and perform regularly, it really is quite simple; put your best team on the park, every time.

That seems very logical, yes? But, is it really that simple in reality?

Ask your coach. The best type of headache is a selection headache. Which players to choose for what positions? “Oh, but I have a full squad available… so who to choose?”

In reality, this is often not the case. Case in point; Liverpool FC. Compare their 2019-20 campaign with their current 2020-21 campaign and you’ll be acutely aware that there has been a significant drop in form. What you might also recall is the significant injury drama within their defensively minded squad members! Combine that with minor injuries to key first-team players and you realise that this team has not trained together properly since the start of their campaign. It’s no wonder they are struggling!

Here comes the scientific proof.

UEFA (Union of European Football Associations) collects data on as many squads within their competitions as they can. 24 football teams from nine countries across 11 seasons gave 155 ‘team-seasons’ worth of injury data to collect. This landmark study found that when the burden to the squad due to injury was lower (which means a higher player availability), these teams were afforded higher points per match on average. This also resulted in teams performing better in the Champions League or Europa League. Teams averaging greater than 85% availability performed better!

The same is true in Cricket, Rugby Union, Track and Field athletes and indeed any sport, where by having more than 80-85% attendance and availability for training or games resulted in success.  

Practically speaking; by devoting time and energy to maintaining your availability you gain:

  • More time in training your skills,
  • More time developing tactically,
  • More time developing your physical condition,
  • More availability for match-play
    • And therefore, more time on the park!

Want to help your team win? Stay injury free and keep on training!

Socceroos in “pre-hab” prior to playing Germany in 2015.

2021 AGM

12:00am, Saturday 13 February 2021

The 2021 club Annual General Meeting will be held on Saturday 6th March at 10am at the fields. Please contact the club if you are interested in registering for any position on the committe.

2021 Registration

12:00am, Wednesday 6 January 2021

And our registrations for Season 2021 are now . . . . . . open!
Whether you've been a fox for years or just want to find out what all the fun is about we encourage you to register using the link below....

2021 EOI

12:00am, Wednesday 28 October 2020

With the football season nearing completion Clairvaux FC are turning our attention to next season   ……   2021 !
Similar to the last two years we ask that you use the online EOI form (link below) to keep us up to date on your intentions with regards to playing football for the Foxes next season.
Our retention of players continues to be excellent from season to season but we are extremely keen to continue to grow the club providing the best possible opportunities for our players to improve their football but also to enjoy it with a big smile being our only prerequisite.
We therefore request that you share this with your friends to ensure they know about the wonderful season you’ve had at our club.

Major sponsors
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Minor sponsors