Football is not just about strength. Speed training for football is also very important. It is noted that the highest ranked players outperform their peers in tests like the 10 yard and 40 yards sprints than they are in the squat or bench press. Speed matters a lot in separating the good from the very best.
No doubt, genetics play an important part in how fast one can run. But, it is also true that anyone can get faster and everyone can improve their speed off the mark.
Foot speed drills are important to improve your speed and agility. Nimbler feet directly translate into faster sprints and smoother changes in direction.
Here are some of the drills that can make your feet move faster. These are
Jump rope drills are considered the simplest tool to improve your foot speed. This is best done as a part of warm up. In case of warm up, perform each exercise for 10 to 20 reps. You can repeat this as many times as you want.
- Stand on your toes with a slight bend in your knees and keep your knees soft.
- Hop up and down over the rope.
- Use ankles to produce the movement.
- Alternate hops to the left and right.
- Hop with your right foot forward and to your left foot backward. And then, alternate with left foot forward.
Miniature Hurdle Drill I
Miniature hurdles are between 6 and 12 inches high. There are two hurdle drills that can be used to improve your foot speed.
- Start with line up 6 to 10 hurdles spaced apart by twice the length of your foot. If your foot is 9 inches long, the hurdles should be of 18 inches.
- Face the hurdles.
- Keep your knees soft.
- Place your hands on your hips.
- Rise up onto your toes.
- Hop over the hurdles using your ankles to produce the movement.
Miniature Hurdle Drill II
The hurdle drills are a great way to finish the warm-up process. Line up 6 to 10 hurdles with the first placed at a distance equal to the length of your foot. For eg. if you have a 9-inch foot, the first hurdle should be 9 inches in front of the start line.
- Place the other hurdles in such a way that they are following distance from each other.
- Second hurdle:150% of the length of your feet.
- Third hurdle should be 200% of the length of your feet.
- Fourth hurdle should be of 250% of the length of your feet; etc.
- Stand behind the start line and face the hurdles.
- Sprint forward as fast as possible.
- Then, place one foot in between each hurdle.
It requires no equipment, but one must follow correct sprinting technique. For this drill, the requirement is a 20-yard course.
- Make focus on one leg at a time. Step forward with your left leg.
- Dorsiflex your right ankle, bring your right foot up to your hip, swing the leg forward and drive your right foot down to the ground.
- Now, step forward with your left leg.
- Repeat the fast-leg motion with your right.
- After 20 yard’s completion, perform the fast-leg motion with your left leg.
It should be noted that Fast-Leg Drills should start with the beginning. When you feel comfortable with those, then, step to the next level.
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All players require speed. Some of the ways that can improve your speed are:
· Turn and sprint drill
In this, players stand on the halfway line. On command, they turn and sprint 10m. Take 30 seconds as recovery time and repeat it for six times.
· Run and dribble intervals
In run and dribble intervals, start running at three-quarter pace to a ball placed 20m away. Dribble it and serve around a cone. After 15m pass it and jog back to your position. Repeat six times.
- Speed dribble Start dribbling as fast as possible in a straight line. Take one-minute rest as a recover time and repeat it for six times.
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