Athletic superiority is all about power; the sublime combination of strength and speed. For some, it is a natural ability. But, for most of us, building power in athletes requires a thoughtful workout program that rewards fast twitch muscles and focuses on explosive movement. These ten techniques will help develop explosion and power over time. So, stop worrying about strength and start paying attention to power. That’s what real athleticism is all about.
Ten Exercises to Build Power in Athletes
1) Banded Deadlift
Deadlifts have long been a gold standard exercise for building strength. When combined with the power generating effect of bands, this exercise becomes a world beater for developing explosive movement. Using the straight bar or trap bar, make sure your bands are evenly spaced. Or, for extra style points break out the chains.
2) Broad Jump
Sometimes the simplest movements are the best. Standing with your feet shoulder-width apart and leaping into space is about as simple as it gets. And, there are no better ways to build power. Concentrate on exploding with your entire body and fight for every last inch on each jump. You will be able to feel your fast twitch fibers concentrating in no time.
3) Sprints (Sled Optional)
Another natural exercise, sprints are all about dynamic movement and explosion. Plus, they train your body to more efficiently use oxygen. For an increased workout, try sprints with weighted sleds. Be prepared for a burn, this exercise does not mess around, but the results are well worth the effort.
Another Olympic exercise, the snatch rewards clean, explosive movement. It also is heavily dependent on proper technique, so study up before you add it to your power workout.
5) Split Jerk
Continuing with the Olympic theme, the split jerk incorporates your entire body into one explosive movement. The best thing about this exercise is its dependence on speed, timing, and strength for success. Mastering the split jerk is truly an athletic accomplishment.
6) Power Clean
This one’s easy to remember because it has power in its name. A venerable Olympic lift, the power clean has rewarded the most powerful athletes with awards and accolades for decades. Make sure to use great technique, as any variation can negate the positive effects and even cause injury.
7) Plate Jump
The plate jump is a tricky way to force you to extend yourself by using the weight to propel your body forward. You are left with no option but to follow. As you become more comfortable the weighted swing will safely increase your explosion. There are few easier ways to quickly build power in athletes.
8) Frog Squat Jump
As long as your knees are sound, the frog squat jump will be your power building friend. As with squats, this exercise depends on a full range of motion in the knee joints so be careful when just beginning. Soon, you will be hopping all over the gym, and becoming the most powerful creature in the swamp.
9) Medicine Ball Throw
This exercise has all the makings of a primitive game. Pick up something heavy and throw it at the wall. But guess what? It works. With the recent availability of a multitude of weighted medicine balls and smash balls, this exercise can be modified for any fitness level. So, start chucking that ball, and watch the results pour in.
10) Standing Triple Jump
The standing triple jump is identical to the track and field event but with no run-up before launch. Each time you land, you are also loading for explosion, requiring coordination and testing your core. Once you have the rhythm down, this is a fun way to end your power workout.
Remember, exercises designed to build power in athletes are no joke. Build up your strength and general fitness gradually before you tackle power specific programs. And, always research the proper technique for every exercise before you start and don’t skip the warm up.. There is no power when you are on the sidelines with an injury. So, be safe and stay strong in your pursuit of powerful athleticism.