Monday, April 22, 2024

Improve Mobility: Make your workouts more functional

Athletic Performance Training Center focuses on functional training for its athletes. That means movement-based — and not muscle-based — exercises make up the majority of every athlete’s workout. In addition to developing strength, speed, agility, and athleticism, APTC wants its athletes to improve mobility, balance, coordination, and stability. All these components contribute to a more powerful, capable athlete.Ultimately, the athlete’s training should reflect the demands and movement patterns of his or her sport.

Better mobility helps athletes reduce the incidence of injury, and also gives players a considerable advantage on the court or field. Hip and ankle mobility are important for explosive movements like sprinting; accelerating and decelerating; changing direction; and blocking and tackling.

Unilateral exercises (those which load one side of the body at a time), like single-arm presses and single-leg squats, are probably more reflective of sports performance than traditional bilateral exercises (loading both sides equally). We like alternating between unilateral and bilateral exercises, for a specific movement or muscle group, every other week, to build a stronger, more balanced musculature.

Perform more exercises standing, including standing on one leg. When you sit or lie down to do an exercise, you’re not supporting your own weight and, as a result, you’re compromising the development of core strength and stability.

Get away from training on machines that “lock” your body into exercises that don’t require balance or stability, and those that don’t work multiple joints and muscle groups from different angles. Opt instead for free-weight exercises using dumbbells, kettlebells, medicine balls, or even sandbags.

Move through different planes of motion when you workout. Lateral, transverse (diagonal), rotational, and anti-rotational exercises are great additions to any training regimen.

Get STRONGER, Get FASTER!

Steve Hare
Steve Harehttp://www.ohiovarsity.com
Steve Hare is the Chagrin Valley Conference's Sports Information Director. He also created and publishes OhioVarsity.com, an online publication dedicated to providing hyperlocal coverage to area high school athletic programs. Hare began covering high school sports for the Lake County News Herald in 1997. Hare attended Willoughby South High School through the middle of his senior year, then graduated from Berkshire High School in Burton in 1986. He played football, wrestled and was an all-Geauga county baseball player (1986). He lives in Chardon with his wife Paulette and their children.

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