5 Exercises That Should Always Be in Your Strength Training Routine
It’s imperative to continue working on your strength training as an athlete. As the years pass, so do the hot new fads of what’s hot and what’s not.
Here are five exercises to keep in your routine no matter your age or strength fitness level.
1. Single-Leg Squats
This exercise builds lower body strength, stability and balance.
Start on one foot flat on the ground, your opposite foot six to twelve inches off the ground in front of your lead foot. Put your arms straight out in front of you, bend at the knee and squat down to a 45 degree angle. Then return to the starting position.
Start with three reps of ten on each leg and go from there.
2. Hamstring Curls
This exercise is great to work on the strength and firing aspect of your hamstring muscles. Make sure you choose a weight that has some resistance but not overly heavy.
Laying on your stomach, adjust the pad to sit right around your Achilles tendon. From there pull your legs in. Make sure not to use your hips to pull and not to fast or slow. A good steady pace.
An alternate would be to do single leg curls rotating each leg after every contraction. Three sets of ten to fifteen is adequate.
3. Cable Rotation Chops
Start in an athletic stable stance with the cable machine behind you and hold the rope at shoulder level. Explosively rotate forward and down towards your front foot. Slowly return to the start position.
Make sure to keep your core tight and to drive your elbows through before locking your arms out straight. Use a lighter weight with enough resistance to not sacrifice form. This will help with your change of direction and core strength needed to fend off defenders and also give your core the extra torque needed on your shot on goal from different angles.
Three sets of eight to ten will be adequate.
4. Core Planks
Lying face down raise your body so you are balancing on your toes and elbows positioned directly under the shoulders. Tighten the core muscles and keep the hips up and your head held up looking straight ahead.
Be sure to breath and not hold your breath. Three to five sets of thirty to sixty seconds will be adequate, adding time as your core strengthens.
Variations: Raise and arm or leg or opposite arm and leg at the same time alternating sides. This will increase stability and balance strength.
The burpee is a four-part movement consisting of the following phases done consecutively without pause:
- From a standing position, bend over at the waist and squat down until your hands are on the floor just in front of your feet
- Kick your legs back behind you to place yourself in a push-up position
- Reverse the previous motion by pulling your knees in toward your midsection to return to the squatted position
- Stand up to return to the start position
This is an extremely effective exercise if done properly.