Exercises for Power and Speed
Fitness Tip: Exercises for Power and Speed If you play a winter sport that has a power/speed element involved i.e. squash, rugby, soccer, netball and hockey then you should be entering your power and speed phase. This phase would generally contain a mixture of sprinting drills, plyometric exercises and depending on what sport you’re involved in you might include some Olympic lift exercises. One exercise that would have a good crossover for all of these sports are split jumps, which is a plyometric exercise. Technique: The aim of any plyometric exercise is to have as little contact time with the ground as possible to ensure that you use the elastic energy that is momentarily stored in the muscles. For split jumps begin with one leg extended out in a lunge position, with both arms down by your side. Then using the thrust of your arms and the power of your legs explode upwards as high as possible and land with the legs in reverse (start with the right leg leading, land with the left leg leading). Repeat immediately on contact with the ground, but ensure the front knee bends into a lunge position before take-off. Do 3-4 sets of 8-12 reps. Another simple yet effective plyometric exercise is squat jumps. Technique: Begin with feet shoulder width apart and both arms down by your side. Crouch down into a half squat position and from there use the power of your legs and the thrust of your arms to jump as high as possible. Repeat jump immediately on landing, once again ground contact time should be as brief as possible. Do 3-4 sets of 8-12 reps. These exercises should be performed on a forgiving surface with good quality footwear. A good leg strength base is also recommended your should be able to squat at least one and half times your bodyweight before getting into an intensive plyometric programme. Tip provided by Diarmuid Calderwood Personal Trainer at Club Kelburn. For further information on anything related to fitness and an effective workout routine call 472 9299.