Professor Francisco Seirul·lo Vargas was born on
1945. His life-long love and dedication to sports began at the age
of 6 when he first started playing basketball, soccer, and track and
field. Ultimately, it was high level track and field where he
concentrated his personal athletic efforts, competing in 100 m., 200
m. and 400 m. hurdles with the Sports Union Salamanca, and also the
University of Madrid (he was junior champion of Spain in 200 m. and
bronze medalist in 400 m. hurdles in the university championships of
Spain). In the university he also practiced all kinds of sports
activities, excelling in athletics and fighting sports.
It was at the
INEF of Madrid (University of Human Movement Science)
that he earned his Degree in Physical Education (1972), Master in
Athletics (1972), and National Athletic Trainer (1975).
After graduating the INEF of Madrid, he worked as
Technical Director of the Physical Education Services in the
University of Salamanca, before accepting a position at the INEFC of
Barcelona, the setting in which he has developed the majority of his
Since his first year as a full professor at the
Science of Movement and Sport School at the University of Barcelona
–INEFC, in 1976, he has taught numerous Postgraduate, Graduate, and
Doctorate courses. He has also served as
Director and Chief of Graduate Studies on two
occasions. As chief of graduate studies and head of the Physical
Education department he has been responsible for developing the
school’s main programs: Fundamentals of Human Movement, Theory and
Practice of Physical Education, Theory and Practice of Sport
Training, and Initiation-Development Processes
of Human Movement and Sports.
In addition to his education work in the university
setting, he has taught the Master of High Performance Sports for the
Spanish Olympic Committee, and the Professional School of Medicine,
Performance and Sport. He has also served as professor of Coaching
Theory and Planning for the National Coaching Schools of Spain in
Martial Arts, Gymnastics, Swimming, Judo, Tennis, Volleyball, and
Track and Field.
Professor Seirul-lo is often invited as a lecturer to
international conferences in physical education, sports training,
and adjuvant training. He has given more than 50 courses in
different Spanish cities, as well as in other countries, such as
Portugal, France and Italy. He was founder and director of RED
Sports Training Journal (1987) and REF Physical Education Journal
(1985). He currently serves as the honorary director and honorary
advisor, of both journals respectively. He has published numerous
articles in review journals, books for the National School of
Athletics Coaches, and for the Master of Sports High Performance; as
well as diverse documents for the magazine “Pedagogical Technical
Likewise, he has outstanding experiences in the field
of physical education and of the sports initiation. Thus, in the
early 80’s, he was the responsible of a detailed study and exchange
with the best European schools of sport initiation (basics of the
former German Democratic Republic, complemented with applications of
the schools from Russia, France, Italy and Scandinavia), in order to
elaborate a thorough summary that would allow coordination and
participation in the creation and practical development of the C.I.D.
Centers of Sport Initiation which are now a very prestigious
In the field of the adjuvant training, drawing on his
beginnings in track and field, he has integrated knowledge of
medicine, movement rehabilitation, movement education and sports
training in order to solve the injuries of scores of athletes.
He has advised, always with his characteristic
mastery and efficacy, many other trainers and conditioning coaches
in creating injury prevention practices for the athletes they train
(track and field, judo, motorcycling, cycling, climbing, handball,
basketball, football, boxing, martial arts, bullfighting, etc.).
A perfect example of his adjuvant training is
highlighted by the pioneering interdisciplinary collaboration
between the medical staff and the technical group of the FC
Barcelona’s handball team that made possible the tremendous record
of prevention and recovery of injuries for more than one decade.
But perhaps his greatest contribution to the sciences
of human movement started in the mid 80’s, when Professor Seirul-lo
began developing a new theory of training for team sports, based on
the notion of complexity and utilizing dynamic systems theory.
During the more than 30 years since, Professor Seirul-lo has
repeatedly turned this pioneering theory of athletic training into
practice, applying his theory of dynamic systems training to great
effect in his direct training of high level athletes in a multitude
of disciplines, but most of all in team sports.
The breadth of his work with Spanish National Teams
in full international competition is one-of-a-kind. He has trained
athletes for 5 different Olympic Games: Munich in 1972 – 4x100 Relay
and Triple Jump, Montreal in 1976 – Judo, Los Angeles in 1984 –
4x100 Relay and Triple Jump, Barcelona in 1992 – Tennis, London in
2012 - Handball. With the
Spanish Handball Team he has participated in 4 different World
Handball Championships: 1993 in Sweden, 2009 in Croatia, 2011 in
Sweeden, and in
Spain in 2013 - winning a historic Bronze Medal with the team’s
head coach, Valero Rivera (a former pupil of Professor Seirul-lo’s)
- in 2 European Handball Championships: 2010 in Austria and 2012
in Serbia - and in 1 Olympics Games: 2012 in London; and winning an
outstanding Gold Medal in Spain 2013, playing in Barcelona. As a coach of athletics, has achieved 18 National
Championships in different categories in the specialties of long and
triple jump and discus and hammer throw. On the other hand, has
coached fencers, boxers, bullfighters, and motorcyclists like Dani Pedrosa since 2011.
As impressive as his body of work at this level is,
what he has done over the course of his affiliation with FC
Barcelona is even more amazing. During the decades of the 80’s and
90’she was responsible for the conditioning and planning of F.C.
Barcelona’s handball team. Together with the coach, Valero Rivera,
he built the entire training structure that over time enabled the FC
Barcelona Handball team to obtain the best international results
ever obtained in this sport. With Valero Rivera and FC Barcelona’s
handball team he has won: 8 National Leagues, 7 Copa del Rey
Championships, 2 European Cups, 2 European Super-Cups and 5 Spanish
In the mid 90’s he became an integral part of what FC
Barcelona is most famous for the world over – it’s soccer team. In
1994 he was named as the head physical conditioning coach of FC
Barcelona’s soccer team. In addition to this, he was made the
Director of the technical commission responsible for the physical
conditioning and preparation of all professional sports teams in the
club. He continues to hold both roles to this date, and in this
capacity he has worked with such legendary soccer coaches as: Luís
Aragonés, Llorenc Serra Ferrer, Radomir Antic, Bobby Robson, Carles
Rexach, Louis van Gaal, Frank Rijkaard, Johan Cruyff, Josep
“Pep” Guardiola (himself a former student of Professor Seirul-lo’s),
"Tito" Vilanova and "Tata" Martino.
Since Pep Guardiola’s naming as trainer of FC
Barcelona’s 1st team, Professor Seirul-lo has
collaborated closely with Guardiola to build what many experts
believe to be the best club football team in the history of the
sport. In May 2009 this team achieved a historical triple win: the
League (La Liga), the Copa del Rey, and the UEFA Champions League
Trophy. In December 2009 the team won the World Club Championship,
becoming the first team in history to win every trophy in the sport
-6 of 6- in the same year.
In 2010 they won the League (La Liga) for the second consecutive
season, achieving a new record in points and losing only one game
during the whole campaign.
In 2011, after winning their 3rd consecutive League
title, they again won the UEFA Champions League in exceptional
fashion. In August won again the Spanish Super-Cup. To date, with
the FC Barcelona Soccer Team Professor Seirul-lo has won: 9 National
Leagues, 4 King's Cup titles, 7 Spanish Super-Cups, 4 European
Super-Cups, 1 European Re-Cup, 3 European Cups/UEFA Champions
League, and 2 FIFA Club World Cups.
Professor Seirul·lo has also achieved various
personal distinctions because of his many coaching successes. He is
the only professional coach ever to have won a European Cup in two
different sports (handball and soccer). On May 27th, 2008 he was honored with the Medal of the Royal Order of Sports
Mention by the Superior Council of Sports, in recognition of his
contribution to the development of sport in Spain.
In 2011 professor
Seirul-lo achieved a historic double award for being a key
component, together with his two former pupils Valero Rivera and Pep Guardiola as coaches, in simultaneously building two teams, FC
Barcelona's Handball team and Football team, that are considered by
experts around the world as the best of all times, in quality of
play, consistency of performance, and human values.
On September 27th, 2013 he received an award for his career as a
football trainer, handed in by the Spanish association of football
On March 18th, 2015 professor Seirul·lo receives a tribute of
appreciation and gratitude to his teaching work, presenting a book
about his fundamentals for movement education, on the occasion of
the doctoral thesis presentation of two of his former students at
the University of Lleida.
Currently, in addition to his professional activity
in the various teams of FC Barcelona, and consultancy with the
Movements Sciences School of INEFC-Barcelona, he is also a
scientific advisor to the International Center for Athletic Training
Services (EEB) of Barcelona.
In May 2014, let his direct activity with the first team of FC
Barcelona and becomes the training methodology director of the club.
Professor Seirul-lo’s love, passion, and dedication
to the movement sciences have made him a great teacher to all who
wish to learn about the sciences of physical training, adjuvant
training, and sports training. Clearly, he has accomplished almost
everything possible in terms of victories, medals, and trophies.
But above all, what is most remarkable about Professor Paco Seirul-lo
is his continuing humility and generosity, because he has always
given freely of his time to wisely advise and help his past and
present students at every opportunity.