An athlete’s speed and agility training program should focus on training agility and explosive speed. It often comes down to an athlete’s ability to change directions quickly and move fast which determines the difference between good and exceptional performers in any sport. The agility training workouts are a great way to develop balance, coordination, strength, and explosive speed. In addition, there are many benefits of Agility training for athletes that help them in sports and other physical activities.
Sprint Training – Agility Training Workouts
Any athlete who needs explosive speed and quickness should train with sprints to develop their foot speed and agility. In sports like soccer, hockey, football, and basketball, adding speed and agility training drills can dramatically improve your performance, regardless of whether you train for strength or endurance. Listed below are some best drills to enhance your speed agility training exercises that will get you results in no time. You can use the Vitruve encoder to control each exercise.
Best Drill To Improve Your Speed And Agility Training
1. Zig-Zag Drill
Usually, the best agility training exercise uses basic cones, starting by placing five cones one yard apart in a zigzag pattern. Start in an athletic stance, about five yards in front of the first cone. Sprint to the first cone, weaving through the zigzag pattern. Weave through the final cone, break right and receive a pass from your partner. Repeat this drill in the opposite direction, weaving through cones and breaking left for a pass.
Reps: 3 in each direction
To perform the T-Drill, place your cones 5-10 yards apart, forming the letter ‘T’ (i.e. three cones on top and one down the center). Begin at the start cone (i.e. the bottom of the T) and backpedal to the middle of the T. Next, shuffle to the right cone, then shuffle back across the T to the far-left cone. Sprint back to the middle cone, rounding the middle cone. Sprint back through the start cone. Perform the next rep in the opposite direction.
Variation: Perform crossover run instead of shuffling
Reps/Rest: 2/ 90 seconds
3. Forward Backward Sprint
To execute a forward-backward sprint, start by setting up two markers, about 10 yards apart. After a good warm-up, sprint at full speed forward from the first cone to the distant cone. Once you reach the distant cone, turn and run or jog back to the starting cone. Stop and quickly accelerate in a sprint back to the distant cone – repeating as many times as you can at a full sprint.
Reps: Repeat 10 times
4. Plyometric Agility Hurdles
The plyometric jumping exercise is primarily used by athletes to gain explosive power and speed. Additionally, these challenging agility training drills improve coordination, and agility, and effectively enhance sports performance. Using a set of small hurdles, jumping on one or both feet can generate agility and improve foot speed for runners and field sports athletes alike.
To perform plyometric agility hurdles, set up several small agility hurdles, placing about 2 feet between each hurdle. Start with your legs shoulder-width apart. Begin to jump upward and forward, clearing each hurdle. Be sure to land lightly on the balls of your feet. Upon landing, immediately jump again, driving forward with your arms. Repeat several repetitions. Repeat the drill on only the right foot and then only the left foot.
Reps: 3 sets of reps per leg
Rest: 15 seconds between reps
5. Tuck Jumps
Tuck jumps are simple drills that enhance agility and power. Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart, with your knees slightly bent. Bend your knees and jump straight up with explosive force, bringing your knees toward your chest while in midair. Grip your knees quickly and release. Once you land, instantly repeat the next jump. Comprising this agility training exercise in your weekly training sessions will improve coordination, balance, and strength.
Reps: 10 jumps
Sets: 3 times
Rest: 15 seconds between sets
6. Stair Running
Running stairs produces a great interval workout while improving swiftness and foot speed. Although technically this is not an agility training exercise, it is an ideal way to improve swiftness and foot speed. Running stairs provides a cardiovascular benefit similar to that of running and is an exceptional way to build explosive sprint power.
Start this drill by running on about 50 – 100 stairs at medium speed. When you reach the top, turn around and walk back down. Use the walk back as your rest interval, and repeat. It’s that easy! If this is your first time running stairs, start by walking to avoid delayed muscle soreness.
Sets: Start with 5, working your way to 10 sets per workout
Occurrence: 2-3 times/week
7. Shuttle Runs
Despite its simplicity and ease, shuttle running offers loads of benefits. High-performance athletes who play stop-and-go sports such as soccer, tennis, and basketball use the shuttle run to train their agility. In addition to building speed and agility, it increases conditioning fitness and strengthens lower extremity muscles.
Start by setting up a source with two markers, about 25 yards apart—sprint with explosive speed from one marker to the other and back (i.e., one repetition). There are a variety of different ways to do the shuttle run, including side-to-side runs, forward-backward runs, and forward-touch-return runs. If you’re looking to add more intensity to this drill, complete your shuttle runs with loading resistance at the waist and thighs.
Sports-related skills such as speed, coordination, explosive power, and agility can be improved through agility training exercises. Athletes of all ages, including high school sports enthusiasts, can benefit from these training programs. To maximise the benefits of this training It is essential to incorporate these workouts into your training schedule. Also you can use a velocity-based training to know the intensity of the workouts.
These drills are all tested and trusted training to build agility, speed, strength, and endurance. You can elevate your athletic status from average to outstanding if you consistently perform agility drills as It is every athlete’s dream to be the best in their respective fields. Therefore, incorporating these drills into your exercise routine will enable you to skyrocket your career as an athlete.