Posts Tagged ‘Weight training’


By K. Aleisha Fetters, 

Exercise machines are simple — too simple, in fact. According to metabolic training expert BJ Gaddour, C.S.C.S. owner of, “They’ve been dumbed down to the point that they just don’t do your body much good.” Besides parking you on your butt, most machines isolate a single muscle, meaning you’ll burn fewer calories and gain less muscle mass rep for rep.

Most importantly (at least as far as medical bills are concerned), exercise machines can lead to injury. Even with their adjustable seats and pegs, finding the proper position can be close to impossible — and even then the movements just aren’t natural. “Free weights and bodyweight exercises allow your body to move in a natural range of motion,” Gaddour says. “When you fix it, it results in a limited and improper movement pattern that can be dangerous.”

Here, Gaddour shares five exercise machines you should swear off — and all-star alternatives that will give you better, faster fitness gains.

1. The Machine: Lying Leg Press
Your legs are strong (after all, they carry your body around all day), so if you lie down with your legs above your head for a leg press, you have to load more than the equivalent of your bodyweight onto the machine to achieve significant resistance, Gaddour says. Problem is, all that weight goes straight to your lower back, which flexes under the pressure. The risk? A herniated disk. Plus, the move doesn’t even work any of the stabilization muscles in the hips, glutes, shoulders, or lower back. The result: All pain and barely any gain.

Try This Instead: Goblet Squats
Apart from working just about your entire lower body in a single move, this squat variation involves holding a dumbbell or kettlebell in front of your chest to keep your form in check and the weight off of your lower back. Sometimes, a lighter load delivers a better burn.

2. The Machine: Seated Leg Extension
Since the weight is placed so close to your ankles, the machine puts undue torque on the knee joint, which can wear down cartilage and cause knee pain, Gaddour says. Plus, the common gym contraption is built around a motion that has little real-life benefit.

Try This Instead: Step Ups
Besides working your quads far better than any machine, step ups also train your glutes, hamstrings, and calves. By calling up more muscles, your knees are actually strengthened, not worn down.

3. The Machine: Seated Chest Press
While sitting is less than useful, the bigger problem here is that the machine can cause lopsided muscles. How? If one arm is weaker, the stronger one can end up doing all the work — and getting all the benefit, Gaddour says. To make sure both sides of your chest are strengthened equally, you need to load them separately.

Try This Instead: Pushups
An oldie but a goodie, pushups equally engage both sides of your chest. If it didn’t, you’d fall right over onto your side. What’s more, they tap your core for support and balance. After all, hot bodies aren’t built on chests alone.

4. The Machine: Hip Abductor/Adductor
If it looks ridiculous, it probably is, Gaddour says. And squeezing your thighs together — or pushing them apart — over and over definitely counts. Besides actually working very few muscles, it also strains the spine and can make the IT band so tight it pulls your knee cap out of place — not a good look for anybody.

Try This Instead: Single-Leg Squat
When you’re not in the gym, your inner and outer thighs largely work to maintain stability. So they should do the same thing when you’re in the gym, right? Single leg exercises — like the single-leg bodyweight squat — require those muscles to brace your body and keep you upright, all while putting your quads, glutes, and hamstrings to good use.

5. The Machine: Loaded Standing Calf Raise
While the idea here is to lift weight with your calves, the machine’s setup — specifically the shoulder pads — means that all the weight presses down on your spine before it ever reaches your legs. If it doesn’t turn you into a hunchback, it’ll at least cause you some back pain.

Try This Instead: Bodyweight Standing Calf Raise
If regular standing calf raises don’t have the resistance you need, try standing on one foot during your next set. Besides doubling the weight each calf has to lift at a time, it also puts your legs’ smaller, stabilizing muscles to work.

More from DETAILS:

The Only 5 Exercises You’ll Ever Need

How To Get Rock Hard Abs Faster

Shirtless Nick Jonas Explains How He Got His New Body

The Hottest Vanity Muscles–And How To Get Them



rsLogoAnthony Darmiento
Assistant Strength and Conditioning Coach
United States Olympic Committee

As the National Strength and Conditioning Association states in their position statement on youth resistance training, “Strength training youth athletes needs to be safe, effective and enjoyable. In order for strength training to be safe it’s more than the method of strength training, but rather how it is being implemented.”

For example, important factors such as proper form when lifting and moving are overlooked when a coach simply follows a plan on a written document or tries to implement a training program they once performed.  For this reason, Responsible Coaches seek help and guidance from qualified strength coaches to assist in the development of athletes of any level to ensure that strength training is performed in a proper and appropriate manner.  The risks of strength training are similar between youth and adults and strength training is only effective when it is done in a safe environment with proper supervision.

In order for strength training to be effective Responsible Coaches realize that strength training must complement sport training. For example, eliminating practice time to introduce or implement an effective strength program and developing basic movement skills are safe investments. The off-season and preseason are ideal times to implement a strength program. Responsible Coaches recognize athletes need to have the appropriate motor control to perform basic exercises such as a squat, lunge and pushup before progressing to loaded exercises. Although these movements and others may seem rudimentary and common most young athletes lack the ability to execute them with proper form.  Another reason for stressing the importance of such training is that these skills and movements transfer to many different sports and across all levels of sport.

In order for strength training to be enjoyable two very important factors must be considered: Athlete’s must understand and see benefits from the strength program while also training in a fun and enjoyable environment. Any athlete is more likely to continue training when they understand the benefits and see results. This highlights the importance of a sound and effective program. This is especially important considering it may take a few weeks of progressing before performance increases are seen or athletes begin to feel the positive effects of training. Until then it is important to keep training fun and enjoyable by mixing in games or challenges that keep athletes focused. For example, performing walking lunges on a row of printer paper without stepping off could be enjoyable and challenging for younger athletes.

On the other hand older athletes might enjoy keeping a log of their vertical jump height as each athlete attempts to beat their own personal records over time. Setting goals that are both attainable and challenging for the team or each individual is very important when trying to keep athletes motivated and driven. Thus coaches should be prepared with progressions and regressions for different exercises or activities based on ranging abilities of their athletes. If all this is kept in mind it shouldn’t be hard to keep things in enjoyable and fun while still performing strength training in a safe and controlled manner.


Fagenbaum, A. D., Kraemer, W. J., Blimkie, C. J., Jeffreys, I., Micheli, L. J., Nitka, M., et al. (2009). Youth Resistance Training: Updated Position Statement Paper From the National Strength and Conditioning Association. Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research, 60-79.

User:Extremepullup performing a standard dead-...

User:Extremepullup performing a standard dead-hang pull up (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

David Cassilo
USA Today High School Sports
Doing a lot of heavy lifting might seem like the best way to strengthen your upper body, but sports training expert Rick Howard says that’s not necessarily the case.

We asked Howard, the founder of the Youth Special Interest Group for the National Strength and Conditioning Association, to shed some light on a few upper-body training misconceptions.

Myth 1: Focus on muscles you can see.
Athletes work muscles they can see like their chest. That’s why they tend to do the bench press, biceps and abs. To improve upper-body strength, you have to have a balance between the muscles on the front and back of your body.

Myth 2: Upper-body strength starts in the weight room.
Focus on bodyweight training before you transition to machines like the bench press. You don’t always have to use a strength-training machine. There are all types of exercises like pushups to work your chest muscles and exercises like pull-ups to work your back. It’s a long-term process to get into peak condition, and you need to progress correctly.

Myth 3: Do as many reps as often as you can.
Start with one set of an exercise for 10 to 15 reps. Progress to three sets, then gradually add weight. You don’t need to do the maximum every time. The key is to have great form, not to do as many reps as possible.

Myth 4: Every athlete should bench to build a strong upper body.
Some athletes have shoulder injuries that preclude them from doing a bench press. For others, there are different weighted bars that might be too heavy to lift. Instead, you can use a medicine ball, bodyweight exercises or dumbbells.

Myth 5: You should strengthen your upper body on your own.
A lot of times athletes go into a weight room or in their basement and work out without supervision. That, unfortunately, is where most injuries occur.

A complete weight training workout can be perf...

Image via Wikipedia

Fitness and Triathlon expert; Get-Fit Guy podcast host
Posted: 02/19/2012 10:12 am

Getting to the gym can be tough. But just because you’re stuck at home doesn’t mean you can’t exercise. And you don’t need to have a lot of fancy, expensive equipment to do it.

It’s also not necessary to have a single room in your house that is devoted to exercise, but it can be helpful to have a central place for all your fitness gear. Before deciding on a space, consider the following:

  • Is there carpet? Carpet can be easily stained with oil from exercise machines and can quickly become quite odorous if you’re regularly sweating. If possible, try choosing a room with a hard floor, or get a yoga or exercise mat you can use for sweaty workouts.
  • Is the ceiling low? If your workouts are going to include jumping or overhead pressing, you’ll want at least eight to 12 inches of extra space overhead when your arms are fully extended.
  • Is the room well ventilated? If you’re performing hard cardio exercise or it is warm outside, a hot, muggy room will make you feel suffocated, uncomfortable and far less motivated to exercise.
  • Is the room isolated or sound-proof? If you have babies or young children sleeping at night, it might be tough for you to watch television, listen to music, use a noisy treadmill or make noise lifting weights if your exercise space is near to your kid’s bedroom. You may even find your spouse complaining about your six-pack stomach if it means they’re losing sleep for it.

Now that you’ve chosen your home gym room, you’re ready to put together a home gym. If you’re a big spender, you could simply go to your local sporting goods store and invest $500 to $2,000 in a multi-gym apparatus, which is typically a large piece of equipment with various seats, cables, handles, and weight stacks. If you decide to take this shortcut, then measure your room beforehand to ensure that the equipment will fit, and try to choose a sporting goods store that will deliver and assemble the device, which removes a ton of headache. Or you can try any of these multi-gym options that are smaller and easier to assemble.

While a multi-gym is certainly convenient, there are easier and cheaper ways to create an exercise environment at home. Here are the essential tools I recommend, all of which could easily be purchased for under $300:

  • Elastic tubing: Although one piece of elastic tubing with handles on either end is fine, a few different tubes with varying levels of resistance can offer you more variety for exercises from pulling to pushing to twisting. One version of elastic tubing that I recommend is called a Gymstick, which is basically two elastic tubes connected to a flexible aluminum bar.
  • Free weights: A set of light dumbbells or a light barbell is fine if you’re just starting out. If you’re more advanced, you may want a range of sizes. One very useful and space-saving piece of equipment is adjustable dumbbells, which allow you to adjust a single dumbbell from 5 pounds up to over 50 pounds.
  • Stability ball: This is a big ball that you can use for crunches, squats, sit-ups and for any exercise you may normally need a bench for, such as dumbbell presses. View a variety of stability ball exercise videos here.
  • Mat: I prefer a standard yoga mat, although there are thicker options if you want more padding.
  • Foam roller: A foam roller can be used for a warm-up or cool-down muscle massage, as a balance device or as a fulcrum for doing variations of crunches and back bridges.
  • Cardio equipment: Here’s where you may need to start spending a bit more money. While a simple, inexpensive weighted jump rope will burn quite a few calories, you should also consider an elliptical trainer, treadmill or bicycle. Your local classifieds listing or Craigslist can often offer used equipment at much more affordable prices than purchasing new, but expect to spend anywhere from $200 to $600 on a decent cardio machine.

Of course, there are plenty of other exercise tools you can use to keep variety in your workout program. After all, doing push-ups on a mat can get boring after a few years. From Bosu balls to kettlebells, I’d recommend you add a new piece of exercise equipment every few months to keep your routine fresh, exciting and effective.

Finally, I get asked quite a bit about what kind of workouts you could do with equipment similar to what I’ve described above. I personally like to “mix and match” several different pieces of home gym exercise equipment into a circuit-style workout.

Here’s a sample workout. Do it three to four times through, with 12 to 15 repetitions for each exercise, and minimal rest:

  1. Jumping jacks
  2. Gymstick Overhead Press
  3. Elastic band rows
  4. Dumbbell chest press on a stability ball
  5. Dumbbell curls
  6. Body weight squats
  7. Stability ball knee-ups
  8. Two-minute cardio burst on treadmill, bike, elliptical or other home cardio device.

So what are you waiting for? Why wait until you can get to the gym or afford a gym membership to exercise? Get started now with your own home gym.

For more by Ben Greenfield, click here.

For more on fitness and exercise, click here.

Ben Greenfield is a fitness and triathlon expert and host of the Get-Fit Guy podcast on the Quick and Dirty Tips network. His book, “Get-Fit Guy’s Guide to Achieving Your Ideal Body — A Workout Plan for Your Unique Shape,” will be published by St. Martin’s Press in May 2012.

Follow Ben Greenfield on Twitter:

User:Extremepullup performing a standard dead-...

Fitness and Triathlon expert;
Get-Fit Guy podcast host
Posted: 02/ 5/2012 8:17 am

Your body’s most efficient energy source is fat.

Just one pound of stored fat can provide about 3,600 calories of energy, which is far more than most people actually burn in a single day. In comparison, a pound of storage protein or carbohydrate provides less than half that much energy.

Since it’s so efficient to use as energy, your body relies primarily on fat during rest and during relatively slow and easy physical activity. But once you begin moving quickly, your body begins to burn more carbohydrates, since fat doesn’t provide energy as quickly as carbohydrates. When you need to get from point A to point B quickly (like a running race), or need to hoist a heavy object overhead (like weight training), your body needs more immediate energy, and that’s where carbohydrates come in. They don’t provide as much energy, but they certainly provide it far faster than fat.

So when you move from a standstill to a walk to a jog to an all-out sprint, your body begins to tap into carbohydrates more and more, while gradually reducing reliance on fat as a fuel.

Of course, it’s important to remember that as you move faster, you’re burning more overall calories, too — so while the percentage of fat used as a fuel is decreasing, the total fat calories you burn might still be increasing since your overall calorie burn is significantly increasing. And this is where the “maximum fat-burning zone” comes in.

If you burn 200 calories per hour while walking, and get 60 percent of those calories from fat, then you burn 120 fat calories per hour. But if you burn 600 calories per hour while jogging, and only burn 40 percent fat during that time, you burn 240 calories of fat per hour, twice as many as when you were walking. You’re burning more overall fat calories, but using less fat as a percentage of your overall fuel utilization. Using this concept, you can approximate the point at which fat burning peaks during exercise — aka, your “maximum fat-burning zone.”

The maximum fat-burning zone typically occurs at 45-65 percent of your maximum heart rate, and that is the calculation ordinarily used by personal trainers or gym machines. They’ll take the number 220, subtract your age to find your maximum heart rate, and then take 45-65 percent of that number to find your maximum fat-burning zone.

But the result you get from this method is highly variable and tends to be inaccurate, primarily because your maximum heart rate is highly variable, and that 220 equation doesn’t pinpoint it very well. So here is a better way to find your maximum fat-burning zone:

Warm up on a bicycle for 10 minutes. An indoor bicycle is better, since there’s no traffic, hills, etc.

  1. Pedal at your maximum sustainable pace for 20 minutes. You should be breathing hard and your legs should be burning, but you should be able to maintain the same intensity for the full 20 minutes. If you’re looking at RPM, go for about 70-90 pedal turns per minute.
  2. Record your average heart rate during those 20 minutes by using a heart rate monitor or the handles on an exercise machine.
  3. Subtract 20 beats from that heart rate. Add and subtract three beats from the resulting number to get a range, and that is your maximum fat burning zone.

For example, if your average heart rate was 160, 160-20 is 140, 140+3 is 143, 140-3 is 137, and so your maximum fat-burning zone is when you have a heart rate of 137-143 beats per minute.

Compared to the results that I have obtained from hundreds of individuals in a professional exercise physiology lab with all sorts of gas masks and gadgets, this method obtains very similar results.

Finally, remember that the maximum fat-burning doesn’t necessarily burn a high number of calories; and if you do all your exercise in that zone, you won’t necessarily develop strong lungs or muscles, or much fitness or athleticism. As a matter of fact, because they burn so many calories and boost your metabolism so much, hard cardio bursts and weight training help you lose fat much faster than exercising in your maximum fat-burning zone.

So your ideal workout program should combine cardiovascular exercise in your maximum fat-burning zone (for example, in the morning or on easier, recovery days) with a combination of resistance training and cardio intervals that go above the fat-burning zone (for example, on afternoons or alternate days). Here is a sample workout week that incorporates the fat-burning zone:

  • Day 1: Strength training — 30-60 minutes
  • Day 2: Peak fat-burning zone cardio — 30-60 minutes
  • Day 3: Cardio intervals — 30-60 minutes
  • Day 4: Off
  • Day 5: Strength training — 30-60 minutes
  • Day 6: Peak fat-burning zone cardio — 30-60 minutes
  • Day 7: Cardio intervals — 30-60 minutes

With the workout above, you give your body a chance to burn fat fast with the resistance training and cardio intervals, but you also get to utilize easier days to burn fat in your maximum fat-burning zone, without quite as much strain on the body.

So now that you know how to find your maximum fat-burning zone, it’s time to head to the gym and do your test!

For more by Ben Greenfield, click here.

For more on fitness and exercise, click here.

Ben Greenfield is a fitness and triathlon expert and host of the Get-Fit Guy podcast on the Quick and Dirty Tips network. His book, Get-Fit Guy’s Guide to Achieving Your Ideal Body — A Workout Plan for Your Unique Shape, will be published by St. Martin’s Press in May 2012.

Follow Ben Greenfield on Twitter:

In the January issue of InFlight I wrote about one of my favorite exercise machines, the NordicTrack Ski Machine.   In this post we are going to discuss my other favorite piece of training equipment – “the Crabsuit.”.

There are so many many different types of exercise machines, workout videos, and training products on the market today. Each one promising specific benefits like increase speed, vertical increase, core strength, increased stamina and endurance, total body toning or muscle strengthening.  However, no product promises overall improvements in all these areas, except for one….. the Flex Nimbo™ or as one of my guys calls it – “the Crabsuit.”

Recently hosting a training for a division of the armed forces, exhibited at the National Strength and Conditioning Coaches Association (NSCA) Conference in Orlando and seen being used by celebrity football playerslike Marvin Mitchell linebacker for the 2010 Superbowl Champion New Orleans Saints, martial artists and professional boxers like “Bad” Chad Dawson on YouTube, Flex Nimbo™ is not just another exercise device, but is a full body, cross-training assister created for the serious athlete, but easy enough for the everyday workout.

The Flex Nimbo™ incorporates the  lightweight but powerful use of rubber band resistance training with the unique patented harness design that enables the wearer, regardless of their position or training goals, to work all of the muscles in their body simultaneously. Fully adjustable for a custom fit, the Flex uses foot straps and hand flex grips to allow the user a full body resistance workout. Providing up to 19 lbs. of resistance per arm and levels at 35, 50 and 75 lbs. of total body resistance, traditional weight training cannot push through the total body thresholds like Flex.  Another unique feature of the Flex is its neuro muscular training development and its excellence in promoting balance, coordination and agility with a full range of motion using both major and smaller muscle groups. This has been an excellent resource for chiropractics and rehabilitation therapists. The Flex has also been found to be excellent for improving explosive strength, increased flexibility, speed training, footwork, vertical jumps and starting strength while burning twice the calories of those other methods.

Completely portable and lightweight, Flex Nimbo™ goes with the athlete wherever they go, so no more conflicts with gym schedules or having to “go to” the workout. Flex Nimbo™ allows the workout to come to you! Featured in the March 2009 issue of Stack Magazine, Flex Nimbo™ shows itself adaptable to all sports and recreation such as football, soccer, lacrosse, boxing, mixed martial arts, basketball, track, running, hurdles, tennis, volleyball, baseball, softball and more.

Sean Robbins, Flex Nimbo trainer and two-time US Olympic track and field alternate in the long jump says “the Flex provides resistance with every movement you make, something you’re not typically used to dealing with.”   The Flex Nimbo says Robbins “forces you to stay in an upright position, giving you an activation in the lower back as well as the core.  If you’re doing a movement, then stop and stand, the Flex Nimbo is still being activated.  That helps you maintain your posture, even at rest.”

Geoff Kaplan, director of sports medicine and head athletic trainer for the Huston Texans, adds that the Flex “incorporates functional movement and multidirectional patterns much like sport.” When Kaplan was the athletic trainer for the Tennessee Titans he used the Flex for total body conditioning.  He explains, “When you’re working with athletes and doing a lot of sport-specific training, the legs have to work with the hips, the hips have to work with the trunk and the trunk has to work with the shoulders and the shoulder girdle.  The Flex Nimbo helps to activate and incorporate these different component to try to work more in unison.

We here at Flight101 Sport Speed Development have been using the Flex with some of our athletes for over two years now and I’m really impressed with the results.  Every athlete that we’ve trained with the Flex has shown significant improvement in their respective sport. I had one sprinter in particular who had difficulty maintaining forward momentum because he spent to much time in the air when he ran.  In the beginning of the 2010 season we had him perform all of our sprint drills with the Flex.  The Flex helped him add more power to his drive phase  while  allowing him to maintain good posture without floating or over striding during the sprint and lift phases of his race .  He finished the season placing third in the State Championships and anchored our sprint relay teams to 4th place finishes and 2 school records.

Like we did with this sprinter, the Flex allows you to increase the level of difficulty in your normal training program each week to continually stimulate your athlete in a progression that is appropriate for his or her sport and can be combined with other pieces equipment at the same time.

In conclusion, I am a firm believer in functional strength training to enhance over all athletic performance and there are many resistance training devices out there today.  However,  it takes imagination to devise a functional strength training device that mimics the particular movement of just about any sport.  The Flex is designed biomechanically to mimic the human musculoskeletal structure.  Because it is not used for static position movements only, the Flex offers the most accurate and realistic stimulus possible to lead to maximal gains in athletic speed performance.

For more information on the Flex Nimbo feel free to contact me at

Where to Buy Flex Nimbo!

Explosive power is all about how fast an athlete can generate power from a stand still.  Short sprinters, offensive lineman in football and shot putters are examples of explosive athletes.  An athlete’s explosive power can be improved using plyometric drills

Plyometric Drills Overview – The term plyometrics comes from the  European research conducted by Soviet sport scientists in the late 60’s  and its effectiveness  centers around overloading the bodies extremely fast eccentric-concentric muscle contractions. This form of training involves rapidly stretching a muscle (an eccentric contraction) followed by a fast, powerful concentric contraction.

Whenever you lengthen a muscle, this is called an “eccentric” contraction.  For example squatting down to sit on a chair, essentially contracts the tops of the legs, or the quadriceps muscles. When a muscle shortens, you are concentrically contracting it.  When you push with your legs to get out of the chair that is a concentric contraction of the quadriceps.

This is important to understand because whenever a muscle undergoes a very fast eccentric contraction; its built-in defense system will go into gear and cause a very powerful concentric reaction to counter the stretch. It’s the body’s way of protecting itself from damage. Your body senses this very fast stretch and sends a signal to your muscles telling them to concentrically contract to avoid injury this action is called the “stretch reflex”.

Plyometrics force this “stretch reflex” to occur by using a large amount of force against the muscle in a very short period of time. A great way to do this is to use gravity. Whenever an athlete starts in the air and comes back to the ground, gravity provides additional force on the muscles. If the joints are locked, then the shock will be absorbed by the bones, which is definitely not good for the athlete. But if the joints are not locked, the muscles, tendons and ligaments absorbed the extra force generated by gravity. In particular, the muscles will rapidly contract eccentrically, meaning they will get longer.

If the athlete can eccentrically contract the muscles rapidly enough to cause the stretch reflex, and at the same time simulate movements used in sport, then the athlete will be taking advantage of the body’s natural defense mechanism to aid in speed and explosion training.  This is accomplished by jumping off the ground, jumping over objects, rapid jumps, bounding, and jumping off objects of varying heights.

Due to the amount of force generated by the muscles from plyometric training, it is important to follow some basic rules before training.

1.          Established a good strength, speed, and quickness base before advancing to plyometric training. This takes several weeks of regular speed and quickness drills along with a good weight training program.

2.          Began with level one plyometrics and slowly advance and to levels two and three, which will gradually increase the stress load on the muscles.

3.          Some experts believe that the athletes should not perform Level 3 plyometrics and so they can parallel squat 11/2 – 21/2 times their body weight.

4.          An athlete should never do a plyometric drill when they’re tired. Each exercise and each rep should be done with maximum power and effort. The drill should not be done when the athlete is still recovering from a previous drill.

5.          There should be at least 48 HRS before training the same body part with plyometric exercises.

6.          The athlete should warm up and stretch before conducting plyometric exercises.

7.          An athlete should not do plyometrics if they have had previous injuries such as muscle strains, ligament damage or spinal compression injuries

8.          Some experts believe that pre-pubescent athletes should not do plyometrics due to the incomplete formation of the growth plates. It’s recommended that an athlete consult their Physician to determine the appropriateness of plyometrics for their age.

9.          It’s important that the training surface be free of holes or other obstructions, and the drills should not be performed on hard surfaces like concrete or too soft like say for instance a trampoline.  Firm ground, gym floors, or rubber mats, are better types of surfaces to perform a plyometric drills.

10.       Athletes over 220lbs. or obese athletes (30% or higher body fat) should avoid depth jumps of over 18in. due to the force exerted on the body.

Difficulty Levels – plyometrics drills should increase in difficulty over a period of several weeks, and as previously stated should not be started until a good strength, speed, and agility base have already been established.

Flight101 HIGH PERFORMANCE TRAINING plyometric training routines are divided into three levels of difficulty. Starting from level one and slowly working the athletes to level three. The drills within each level are also listed in order of difficulty.  For a complete 24 Day Plyometric Routine see the chart that follows.

  • Level One

1.         Knee Tuck
2.         Standing Long Jump
3.         Hip Twists Ankle Hop

  • Level Two

1.         Bound for Height
2.         Bound for Distance
3.         Multiple Long Jumps
4.         Split Jumps
5.         Standing Long Jump with Sprint
6.         Running Long Jump
7.         2 Foot  Lateral Hurdle
8.         1Foot Lateral Hurdle
9.         2 Feet Front-Back Hurdle
10.     1 Foot Back-Front Hurdle

  • Level Three

1.         Toe taps
2.         Depth Jumps
3.         Depth Jump Sprint
4.         Depth Jump React
5.         Rapid Box Jumps
6.         Hurdle Jumps – Increasing Height
7.         On Box Jumps – Increasing Height
8.         Over Box Jumps – Increasing Height
9.         Lateral Hurdle Jumps – Increasing Height
10.     Lateral On Box Jumps – Increasing Height
11.     Lateral Over Box Jumps – Increasing Height

Plyometric Drills Grouped by Function – grouping the drills by function helps more clearly defined the athletic goal behind the drill. Some drills have more than one function category because they help the athletes improvement in more than one way.

Each of the explosion functions can be described as either:

1.    Lateral – the ability to quickly move to either side or quickly change direction.

2.    Vertical – jumping ability

3.    Forward – generate quick and powerful drive moving straight ahead.

4.   Quick Recovery – the ability to execute powerful movements one right after the other with minimal time in between

  • Lateral Explosion –

1.  Hip Twist Ankle Hop
2.  2 Feet Lateral Hop
3.  1 Foot Lateral Hop
4.   Lateral On Box Jumps
5.  Lateral Hurdle Jumps
6.  Depth Jump React
7.  Lateral Over-Box Jumps

  • Vertical Explosion

1. Knee Tuck
2. Bound for Height
3. Split Jumps
4. Hurdle Jumps
5. Depth Jump
6. Depth Jump Sprint
7. Depth Jump React
8. Rapid Box Jumps

  • Forward Explosion –

1.  Standing Long Jump
2.  Bound for Distance
3.  Running Long Jump
4.  Multiple Jumps
5.  On Box Jumps
6.  Depth Jump Sprint
7.  Over Box Jumps

  • Quick Recovery Explosion –

1.   Hip Twist Ankle Hop
2.  Toe taps
3.  2 Feet Lateral Hurdle
4.  1 Foot Lateral Hurdle
5.   2 feet Back-Front Hurdle
6.  1 Foot Back-Front Hurdle
7.  Multiple Long Jump
8.  Rapid Box Jump
9.  On Box Jump
10.  Over Box Jump

HIGH PERFORMANCE TRAINING (HPT) Routines OverviewOur HPT Training is set up to be performed three days a week over a nine week period with the opportunity for the athlete to do some training independently on their off days. The training sessions began with mastering sprinting basics or form work. For more information  on our  Speed and Agility Routine – 12 Day Cycle email me at

HPT Training can be performed every day of week provided that the athlete follows a few basic rules.

  1. Do not  perform the drills tired
  2. Always perform a full flexibility routine when training for speed and quickness.
  3. Work on speed, agility, and plyometric drills before lifting weights
  4. Do not perform Level 2 or Level 3 plyometrics drills on consecutive days.  Like weight training, the body needs to recover from these intense drills.
  5. Trained for quality, not quantity it is better to do three drills perfectly than ten with poor form.
  6. Train with weights and performs speed and agility drills for the least four weeks before starting plyometrics.
  7. When performing a plyometric routine make sure the athlete understands and meets all the safety requirements before starting training.
  8. Perform plyometric and speed drills on different days.
  9. Allow for at least 48 hours recovery between plyometrics training days. If time a does not allow for full recovery, and speed and agility drills have to be performed on the same day as plyometrics then do the plyometric drills first.
  10. Do every single drill and jump with maximum effort treat every repetition like its own exercise.

If you have any questions or would like some instruction oh how to properly perform these drill feel free to contact me at

Related Articles: