Speed is crucial for all sports both on and off the track. Whether you’re running around a football pitch or racing to the finish line, the quicker you are, the greater advantage you have on your opponents.
Being fast, lean and agile is a must for all athletes so continuously improving foot speed is essential. However, improving your foot speed is an ongoing process and there is no quick or easy fix. It’s achieved through hard work, commitment and tenacious training. Tireless drills and relentless training will deliver the results over time, and using foot speed ladders and hurdles during training help to not only increase your speed but also perfect your technique for faster feet, better coordination and control. There are several ways to improve your foot speed and agility. Here are some of our top tips:
Sprint your way to faster feet:
Sounds like stating the obvious but building up your speed through sprints is one of the most effective and common ways to increase your foot speed. Run as fast as you can for short bursts, rest and then repeat. Even if you have to start out running sprints for just 10 seconds at a time before a rest, you’ll soon build up your time and speed. Aim for 30 seconds sprinting and 30 seconds off and repeat. Work up to 10 repetitions; again you may have to build this up gradually but before you know it, you will be conquering sprints.
Climb the ladder of success:
There are many benefits of training with foot speed ladder, including improved agility, core strength and foot and hand/eye coordination. Foot speed ladder training also helps to develop balance and coordination. Mix up your workout and do a mixture of linear and lateral drills, with some jump drills in addition. Push off from the balls of your feet, rather than the toes, keep you elbows at 90 degrees and keep your arms and shoulders relaxed at all times. Foot speed ladder drills shouldn’t leave you breathless but are considered a great warm up exercise for wider speed training.
Increased strength = increased speed:
Strengthening your core and leg muscles in turn helps you increase your speed so ensure that you incorporate some strength training into your weekly workout. Exercises such as squats, lunges, planks, bench presses and deadlifts will help build muscle in the right areas. Try and do a strength training session at least once or twice a week, but never on consecutive days.
Get over the hurdle:
Adding hurdles to your foot speed training helps improve high knee power and delivers explosive speeds. Plyometric exercises, such as hurdle sprints, are beneficial for increasing overall speed and aerobic capacity, improving core and leg strength and also bettering you balance and coordination. Added to foot speed ladder drills, a combination of hurdle exercises will help you on your way to faster feet.