All football players need to make sure they properly warm up before performing any high impact activities or speed and agility training. In the past, static stretching was considered the norm, but in recent years static stretching has become an addition to the everyday dynamic stretch routine. At Kbands Training we have put together a dynamic stretch routine that utilizes Kbands. After a small warm-up, football players can increase blood to their legs by running through a sequence of dynamic moves while wearing Kbands. An increase in blood flow throughout the lower half of the body can improve performance and decrease chances of injury. Refer to the video below to follow along as Trevor Theismann explains to football players what muscles to get loose, proper technique, and things to watch out for when completing each exercise.
Football Player Warm Up | Muscle Groups
Every football player must increase their 40 yard times and train to run fast. They have to make sure they warm up properly when working on speed. Football players must know what muscles are being used when performing in order to understand how to achieve the proper warm-up. In order to run faster football players, must work to stretch their hip flexors, quads, hamstrings, calves, trunk, glutes, IT bands, groin, and upper body. Each and every muscle throughout the body is used to maximize a football player's running potential. In the video above there is a sequence of exercises that will prepare a football player's body for speed and agility training.
Train to Run | Warm Up Drills
Slide Stretch: The Slide Stretch can be used to warm up a football player's groin, hamstring, hips, and glutes. It is important for football players to work to maintain an erect chest. Slumping forward and using poor posture for more depth will actually decrease the stretch to the lower body.
Alternating RDL's: The Alternating RDL is used to stretch football player's hamstrings, glutes, and lower back. It also tests balance and body control. A football player must maintain a flat back to complete an Alternating RDL correctly. As the football player drops his chest he will begin lifting one of his legs opposite and even with the leg. The most important part of the exercise is maintaining a flat back. A flat back is necessary to improve core strength, balance, and stretch out the hamstring. Football players should work to push their flexibility and balance by reaching all the way to the floor. If a football player cannot maintain a flat back all the way to the floor then he should only go as far as he can with a flat back.
Lunge & Reverse Reach: This exercise is great to increase blood flow. Multi-joint movements require more oxygen to move throughout the body. By incorporating a forward lunge and reaching with the torso, football players will feel the benefits of strength and body control with a simple warm-up. To complete this exercise, lunge forward for depth. The football player's back knee should be near the ground, but not touching. As the lunge reaches full extension the football player will then drop his chest back and reach above his head. By doing this, the football player will increase muscle activation to his core and help improve balance.
Knee Hug's: The knee hug is great for stretching football player's hips and glutes. To complete a proper Knee Hug the football player must wrap his arms around his knee and rock up on the ball of his foot as he pulls his knee to his chest. Athletes must make sure to roll up onto the ball of their foot on their base leg. This will enhance the body's ability to pull the knee to the chest. After completing one Knee Hug alternate sides and continue 8 to 10 yards.
Lunge & Lateral Reach: This exercise requires hip strength and stability. Football players want to make sure to prepare their body for high-intensity activities. This exercise is a great dynamic stretch to improve coordination, balance, and leg strength. As the football player lunges out and reaches maximal depth, then he will use his opposite arm to reach over the top of his body. The football player will then open up his oblique to stretch his core to prepare the trunk for high-intensity activities.
Swinging Quad: The Swinging Quad stretch is a little different than a normal quad stretch. At Kbands Training we like to challenge balance, flexibility, and body control whenever possible. Simply stretching the quad does not challenge the athlete. By adding a leg swing to the quad stretch, football players will challenge their balance on one leg while improving quad and hip flexibility. To begin the leg swing, kick one leg forward and immediately force it back to the hand on its way back through the midline. Do not hesitate or stop at ground position. Swing all the way back to the catch.
Caterpillar: Football players can use the Caterpillar to warm up their hamstrings. A football player must begin with their legs locked and their hands on the floor and then walk their hands out until they are in the push-up position. Next the football player will begin shuffling his feet back towards his hand while maintaining straight legs. The football player must crawl his way back to his hands without bending his knees.
Now that the football player has completed several warm-up exercises, he is ready to increase his leg strength with Kbands resistance. Football players must make sure to warm up properly before putting on the bands. As soon as the bands are clipped together, jump right back into the warm-up. Use Kbands resistance to increase blood flow to the legs. Football players will notice the resistance instantly. This section of the warm-up must be completed with 100% intensity. Every time a football player straps the bands on they need to be working to increase strength in their legs to run faster.
Kbands High Knees: High Knees with Kbands will help make football players more explosive. Drive the knee up through the resistance as high as possible. Build muscle throughout the hip flexors and quads while developing fast twitch muscle fibers. During this exercise, football players must make sure to keep an erect chest. The focus point of this drill is knee-height and quickness.
Kbands Karaoke: When using Kbands during a Karaoke exercise be sure to control the bands. Kbands will help hip stability if football players concentrate on controlling the resistance. Hip stability is a major contributor to low back and knee alignment, so work hard to drive the knee up and control the bands.
Kbands Glute Walk: A Glute Walk is one of the best exercises that utilizes Kbands resistance. By laterally shuffling a football player's feet, they will notice immediate glute activation. Glutes are in charge of running speed, power, and provides stability to the lower limbs. Glutes are in charge of internal rotation and must be strengthened to prevent possible knee injuries. This exercise is great to enhance strength and hip stability. Football players must make sure to keep their feet wide during this exercise. Shuffling and bringing their feet back together will deplete the effectiveness of the drill.
Kbands Power Skips: A Power Skip with kbands can increase hip flexor stimulation through every skip. Hip flexors can help build a more powerful stride, and in football power is everything. Complete a power skip by driving one knee up and jumping as high as possible. Most of an athlete's power comes from knee drive. Football players must make sure to work through the resistance and build powerful legs rather than letting the bands control them.
Kbands can be used with an array of dynamic stretches. Do not feel limited to these dynamic stretches. When working with groups of athletes it is important to change warm up routines and keep things fresh for the athletes. This warm-up routine will get every muscle warmed up and ready to perform. Other stretch routines can also be used. Just make sure to warm up before using the bands and then end with Kbands. Resistance added to cold muscles can cause possible injury. Resistance added to warm muscles can help increase blood flow and muscle recruitment.
Building a Dynamic Warm-Up | Football Coaches
A dynamic warm-up should always start slow. Football players along with any other athlete should not be challenged by high impact fast-paced warm-up drills. Football coaches and trainers should slowly warm the body up with 1 to 2 plane movements. The best dynamic warm-up routine is completed going back and forth between an 8 to 10 yard stretch. This will allow the football players to get out and move to warm up their body slowly. As the warm-up continues use multi-joint movements to increase blood flow throughout the body. The best way to run a successful dynamic warm-up is to do it yourself. Make sure before adding Kbands resistance your body has a light sweat and is ready to go. At this point football coaches and trainers should have their athletes begin using Kbands. Work to challenge football players depth, flexibility, and speed as you finish the dynamic warm-up. Football coaches and trainers may also end with 10 to 15 yard sprints in the bands for 6 to 8 reps and then 4 to 6 reps without the bands. When the bands are taken off football coaches and trainers will immediately see the difference in their athletes faces. Their legs will feel light and free as they push the pace for the last 4 to 6 reps.