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Friday, August 31, 2012

Fitness Fun Friday: Football Fitness

It's football season! Fantasy Football drafts are happening, college football games are starting and preparations for tailgating are being made! Football players have to posses a lot of stamina, strength, agility and speed. Here's a few football drills you can try on your own for a great full body workout!

Shuttle Runs
Shuttle runs work on speed, endurance and lower body muscle strength. Shuttle runs involve gradually increasing the distance of each sprint. The best place to perform this is on an actual football field - or even a soccer field - with the yard lines marked off. Begin at one end of the field, and sprint 10 yards, then sprint back to starting position. The next sprint should be done for 20 yards and back, then 30 yards and back, and so forth. Make sure you touch the yard line with your hands before sprinting back to the start.

Ladder Drill
The ladder drill encourages speed, agility, coordination and leg muscle strength. Use an imaginary ladder laid out on the ground. To make things simpler, draw a ladder pattern on the ground with some chalk to visualize the ladder. Begin by standing at the bottom of the ladder with your feet shoulder width apart. Step into the first square with your left foot first, then immediately with your right foot. Step on the outside of the second square with your left foot first, then your right foot on the other side of the square. Step back inside of the second square with one foot at a time, then back to the outside on the fourth square. Continue this pattern until you reach the top of the ladder, then run in a straight line back to starting position. The key is to make your steps as quick as possible to maximize the effectiveness of this football fitness training drill.

Vertical Power Jumps
This activity develops power and muscle building in the legs. Vertical power jumps involve jumping as high as you can repeatedly with explosive power. Begin by standing upright, then slowly bend at the knees and hips. With all your force, propel yourself vertically into the air as high as possible. To get more out of the jump, drive your knees towards your chest when leaping. Do not rest between jumps. Instead, transition into each jump immediately upon descent. Repeat 10 to 20 times for a great leg work out.

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