THE BENEFITS OF AGILITY AND PLYOMETRIC TRAINING
You may not have known that your childhood could have been filled with an indirect form of plyometric and agility training. In fact, playing a game hopscotch has surprisingly similar movement patterns as current plyometric and agility drills.
Agility training can be described as the ability to accelerate, decelerate, stabilize, and quickly change direction with proper posture. If you’re looking to take your physical performance to the next level, consider incorporating plyometric training. This form of training involves a series of bodyweight exercises that stress the stretch-shortening cycle of muscle fibers. Benefits of plyometric training include enhancing physical capabilities such as speed, strength, and power.
It’s common for most exercise enthusiasts to migrate towards treadmills, ellipticals, or exercise bikes. And while these traditional forms of exercise do provide great health benefits, they do very little to enhance your agility.
Plyometric and agility training can also be a fun way to break up the monotony for your current exercise program. Look at some of the other benefits you can expect when you participate in a safe well-designed agility and plyometric program.
1. IMPROVED BODY AWARENESS – Agility training is great for improving balance, improve reflexes, and helping you move faster while increasing your coordination. Implementing agility training, especially in your later years, can increase your functional independence.
2. INCREASE YOUR CALORIE BURNING POTENTIAL – Performing agility and plyometric training cause a larger muscular response. The more muscle needed to perform an activity increases the amount of energy consumed, leading to more calories burned.
3. REDUCE RISK OF INJURY – It is possible to injure yourself if you continue to perform the same types of exercises repetitively. Agility training can effectively challenge your muscles to respond in different ways leading to strengthening of the contractile element of the muscle and improving the strength and resiliency of the elastic fascia and connective tissue.
Example Agility Drills/Workout:
- Two Leg Hurdles
- In and Outs
It’s important to keep in mind that those new to agility and plyometric training should progress gradually and follow a structured progressive program that follows a basic form of this type of training. It is advised that those with current or past joint pain, muscular weakness, heart health conditions, or chronic health issues consult their physician before engaging in any physical activity—especially an agility and plyometric program.