The big game is almost here! Whether you’re cheering on a team, amped about the party, excited to see the commercials, or just giddy that football is finally over, the Super Bowl offers something for everyone. It even offers motivation and inspiration for your own workouts.
Professional football players are among some of the fittest athletes in the world, which has everything to do with their training. Players’ workouts are focused on speed, agility, strength, and coordination–all aspects that could benefit you. Not sure what your next move should be? We’ve got a game plan to make your workouts a win.
Ladders: Ladder exercises require a speed ladder that lies flat on the ground (available at athletic supply stores), or the outline of a ladder with 18” x 18” squares created with removable tape. Use this apparatus with various agility drills, such as: high knee runs, stepping both foot per box; bunny hops; single leg hops, and sprints, with one foot per box.
Stair Climbs: Football players put their stadiums to use when exercising, running and climbing the many flights of seats. Do the same using a local high school’s bleachers or use the stairs in a public building nearby. If you’re just starting out, begin by walking the stairs one-by-one. For more challenge, run the stairs, one-by-one or take them two at a time.
Jump Rope: For under $30, you can have the perfect fitness tool to use in your home, on the go, or even when you travel. You probably skipped a rope or two when you were a kid, and doing so as an adult is no difference. However, if you haven’t done it in a while, you may find you’ve lost a bit of coordination. Work on building these skills by starting with your standard two-foot hop and forward swing. When that feels comfortable, try a backward swing. As skills strengthen, add in single leg hops, hops with feet together and apart with each turn, and crisscrossing the rope handles. As you become better with each skill, increase the speed to keep the challenge going.
Box Jumps: The idea is simple–load up power in your hips by squatting and jump onto a box with two feet, stand all the way up on top of the box, then jump back down to the starting position. You’ll need a sturdy platform, such as a wooden box or a stack of heavy plates. Start with a low box–less than 12” to get the feel for the movement. You won’t need a lot of power to get on the platform, but it will help make you comfortable with the motion. Add more height as your abilities allow.
Running Drills: Increase your running speed and muscle reaction by switching up your steps. Set a length of space to run back and forth between. Drills to run can include: butt kicks, high-knees, grapevines on both sides, running backward, sprinting, and straight-leg shuffles.
Deadlifts, Squats, and Lunges: Football players require a lot of lower body strength for both speed and power against their opponents. Strength training is a must for good muscle development. You can start with deadlifts, squats, and lunges, weighted or using just your body weight. Focus on good form with your movements and add weight to up the intensity.
Even without the helmet, pads, and pigskin, you can benefit from adding a few football skills to your workouts. Score healthy points with the exercises provided and hard work. And don’t forget to celebrate your accomplishments with your very own touchdown dance!