Soccer is one of those sports that rely on a great deal of footwork in order to move the ball and out manoeuvre your competitor. And there are several speed ladder drills you can use to help you do both of these things, ultimately building your speed and endurance, and improving your soccer performance.
3 REASONS WHY YOU SHOULD BE USING LADDER DRILLS…DAILY!
1. Most Effective Warm-Up Method For most athletes, a warm-up has three functions; to increase heart rate, warm-up the muscles and ligaments and improve reaction time. Ladder drills have the potential of achieving all three in just a few minutes. Let’s face it! Jumping rope or running laps is just too monotonous, old-fashioned and obsolete. Ladder drills on the other hand, accomplish all the physiological needs of a typical warm-up, plus, they’re more fun and cover different aspects of improving athletic performance. For example, athletes can work on their eccentric control, deceleration and acceleration, explosive movement patterns, proper landing mechanics and multi-planar stabilisation.
2. Extremely Effective Plyometrics Workout When most people think of plyometrics, they think of hang cleans, box jumps or similar exercises. And while those are GREAT movements, you will find that they also carry a relatively high injury risk. On the other hand, ladder drills can be performed FASTER and more EXPLOSIVELY without increasing the risk of injury or straining the athlete’s body. If you think about it, the greatest exercises you can do in the gym are those that directly carry over to your sport. Ladder drills will help you work on your agility, balance, speed and quickness by training the most useful movement patterns of most sports including hopping, bouncing and running forward, backwards and sideways.
3. Rehab, Pre-Hab & Avoid Potential Injuries We cannot stress just how important ladder drills can be for injury prevention. As a warm-up method, they will prepare all your muscles for the intense training to follow but they can actually also help with long-term injury prevention. That’s because with ladder drills you can work on often weak and neglected muscle groups that most people are not even aware of. These muscles include various abductor and knee stabilisation muscles, deep abdominal muscles and lower back muscle groups that never get the attention they need to stay injury-free.