As high school and college spring semesters come to a close, thousands of athletes will return home with little to no exercise program to follow. No matter what school you go to or what sport you play, taking a summer off of training will have negative effects on your overall athletic performance and success. Certainly any amount training is likely better than none but where should you focus your time and effort?
If I've said it once I've said it a thousand times, movement is the foundation to all athletic success. Poor movement patterns and lack of strength in those patterns are one of top reasons we see non-contact injuries in sports. Virtually all sports challenge the body to produce and absorb significant forces across multiple planes. If you, the athlete, are not strong enough to handle the amount of force in a given position then, snap-crackle-pop, something has to give. Spend the time this summer to refine your basic movements. Then you can begin to load them and develop strength through those movements and planes.
>>Related Article: The Basics
Once you've put in the time to move well, its time to learn how to move well quickly and in multiple directions. The summer is a great time to "get more athletic" in the form of increased speed, acceleration, and multi-plane power. If you never move quickly and explosively in your training, it will be difficult for you to be proficient at that in your athletic competition. Additionally, while improving overall athleticism will benefit you, make sure that the explosive movements relate to your sport. If you're a basketball player, sagittal plane power exercises like vertical jumps may be ideal but if you're a baseball player, rotational power exercises like medball throws may be more appropriate.
>>Related Article: How to Get More Explosive
3. Posterior Chain
Show me a solid posterior chain and I'll show you a strong, powerful, and healthy athlete. The posterior chain is fancy talk for the group of muscles that make up the backside of your body. This includes major muscle groups such as the Traps, Lats, Glutes, and Hamstrings. These muscles play a large role in improving performance and staying healthy on field. Take the time this summer to solidify your backside.
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