Does Improving The Combine Make You A Better Football Player Football Speed Training: 3 Key Training Components to Running Faster

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Football Speed Training: 3 Key Training Components to Running Faster

Everyone knows that football is all about speed. The best players have one thing in common, they either find themselves around the ball or find themselves with the ball (in which case they get rid of everyone else). And while you need to focus on all other aspects of the game, speed is the most important. It doesn’t matter how big you are, how strong you are or how much you understand the game. Unless you can beat your man on the first step and be faster than anyone else, you won’t be able to move the ball (or prevent someone else from moving it).

So if you want to develop high football speed, you need to understand what speed training entails. Speed ​​training isn’t just about exploding off the ball, hitting top speed, or getting in and out of the break while changing direction with the football; That’s all! To truly develop in all aspects of your game you need to make sure you target all of these aspects. Keep this in mind as you design your workouts and speed training sessions. And by the way, you definitely need to train and condition in the offseason, because if you show up to the first day of preseason camp without running or working out, you’ll be at least a few steps behind the competition.

Determining movement and faulty movement patterns

It’s important to rebalance your body before you even think about running or lifting weights in the offseason. One of the quickest ways to take a step or two is to use a mobility program and attack incorrect movement patterns. For example, if you have a tight hamstring and dysfunctional hip flexors, you are losing speed and working your body to run faster.

Much has been said about “cookie cutter” programs, but you can’t go wrong with a 5-10 drill circuit that focuses on improving ankle, hip, and shoulder mobility:

  1. Leg swings x 15-20
  2. Ankle Self Mobs x 15
  3. Hip Flexor Self Mobs x 8-10
  4. Linear Lunge w/ Rotation x 5-7
  5. Lateral Lunge + Cross In Front Lunge x 5-7
  6. Yogaplex x 4-6
  7. 1-Leg SLDL x 4-6
  8. Wall Slide x 10
  9. Band pull apart x 5-8

Strength training improves speed

Consider two muscle cars revving their monstrous engines for a drag race. All things being equal, which car wins: the one with more horsepower, or the one with the best driver?

Strength gains from squats, Olympic lifts, plyometrics, single leg exercises and sled training are effective in improving your starting power and football speed. If you can increase horsepower while losing body fat, you’ll be able to run faster without ever doing direct speed workouts. Your offseason football training program should be built around increasing maximal and relative strength with a heavy emphasis on running exercises on the football field (ie sled pushes, kettlebell swings, power cleans, etc.).

It might not seem like a big deal, but if you offer a wide receiver just one step free to move or a defensive end a free step into his rush, they’ll both take it every time. In fact, that first step can be the difference between killing your man completely or standing up straight and getting kicked out of the play! One of the biggest benefits of strength training is improving starting power and acceleration.

Run fast to get faster

Another way to answer the question “how do I run faster” comes when you realize that football requires top end speed training. You can make plays in a rush, but some of the best players can break away from the pack or chase down another guy with the ball to save a touchdown. This can be accomplished in a number of ways, but more than anything you just need to sprint.

The biomechanics of ground contact time, contraction speed, and top end speed are very different from the acceleration phase of a sprint. When you reach maximum speed, speed has more to do with the flexibility of your muscles then how strong you are.

Most football sprint workouts are usually done by mixing a specific combination of flying starts and intervals, but a progressive short-to-long, block-to-sequential speed program has been shown to improve all football qualities simultaneously. Not only should your speed training simulate the actual game, but so should your preparation period. Just as you’re not expected to play on both sides of the ball for 4 quarters in the first game of the season, you shouldn’t start your sprint workouts with 100 or 40 reps. From short 5-10 yard sprints emphasizing acceleration mechanics to 10-50 yard variable sprints with more skill involvement (eg cuts, shuffles, backpedals, changes of direction and reactions).

Regardless of position, football is not a linear game. In order to drastically improve performance in the off season you need to balance emphasis on mobility, strength and speed training. It’s not just about being strong in one direction; It’s about being faster than the other person in every phase of the game.

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