With the Packer season upon us, we will inevitably be glued to our televisions for the next several months being wowed by the athleticism of our favorite players. While imagining what it’s like to be your favorite player can be easy, knowing what it takes to train like them is something entirely different. As much as we wish watching football from the couch would be enough to get us in football ready shape, it’s not! Football players need to have a broad set of skills that allow them to accelerate, decelerate and change directions quickly. Here are a few simple activities to add in to your workouts so you can begin to train yourself to move like your favorite player.
Basic strength training can help you increase your speed, power, and agility. Try getting into the gym 3-5 times a week, using a combination of lifting weights and body weight exercises. Lifting weights will help build muscle mass and overall strength and power. Body weight exercises such as jump squats and jumping jacks can help increase your power and agility.
Football players are constantly doing short sprints on each play, so try mimicking a typical football series. Doing multiple sprints of 10-20 yards with short rests of 20 to 30 seconds can help increase speed and endurance.
Shuttle runs are another great way to get in sprints, which incorporate acceleration, deceleration, agility, and endurance. Set up 4-6 cones about 10 yards apart, run to the first cone and back, then to the second cone and back, and so on.
Basic agility drills can help you quickly change directions. Try the weave-in, weave-out drill. Set up four cones in a straight line, three yards apart. In-between each cone set another cone 3 yards to the left. Sprint diagonally from one cone to the next, bending down and touching each cone with your hand. The key to this drill is to take quick side steps, rather than turning to face the cone and sprinting forward.
These are just a few examples of drills and exercises that athletes use to increase their speed, agility and quickness for on-field performance. If you would like to further push your athletic perfomance and increase the effectiveness of your workouts, reach out to a Personal Trainer at Bellin Health Fitness (Ashwaubenon or Bellevue locations) or the Sports Performance Specialists at the new Bellin Health Titletown Sports Medicine and Orthopedics facility.