Mobility & Strength Running Drills (incl. Plyometrics)

The drills on this page are designed to improve your mobility and strength. Some of them are known as plyometrics drills where the aim is to improve the elastic strength or power of the muscles concerned. There are many variations that can be done of these, for now we have just included some of the most common ones - we will be adding more shortly.

The way to view these "movies" is to click on the image and your browser will load it into the appropriate software. They are not 100% clear, but should be more than adequate to see how to perform the respective exercises.

We have reduced the quality of the video slightly in order to keep the file size down, meaning that with a standard modem, these files should usually download within a minute.

Lunges

Lunges are a good example of a drill that performs the function of both improving mobility and improving strength. The aim here is to take large steps, lunging to get good distance and lowering your hips towards the floor (your back knees shouldn't touch it).

Try to ensure your lower leg on your front leg remains vertical during the lunge. A lunge performed well will stretch your quadriceps, hip flexor, gluts and hamstrings, whilst also strengthening these areas when you pull yourself up again to take the next steps. Hold the position at the bottom of each step for a second or so.

Bounding

Bounding is basically a powerful run, where you land flat-footed on each stride. You are aiming to get as high and far on each step as you can, which makes the action very similar to that used in the step phase of a triple jump. This is a plyometric exercises and as such will improve the elastic strength in your legs, particularly your quadriceps.

Because of the stress of the impact on landing, it is advisable to do this exercise on grass or matting.

Hopping

Again, like a part of the triple jump (clearly, the hop), this exercise is all about power. The aim is to get as far as you can on each hop, but not only that, you also need to drive the knee of the leg that you are hopping on as high as possible each time.

This puts even more pressure on your legs than bounding and as such if you are susceptible to stress related leg injuries, it is probably not a good idea. For everyone, this is another exercise best performed on grass or matting.

To perform this exercise plyometrically you'll need to concentrate on limiting your contact time with the floor as much as possible.

Bunny Hops

Bunny hops are again used to increase the power of the athletes legs. With both feet together, bend down until your upper and lower legs form and angle of about 90 degrees, jump forwards, landing on both feet in a position whereby you can repeat the exercise without having to adjust. Aim to go as far as you can on each jump, but make sure as you do this that you are fully in control of take-off, landing and your passage through the air. If you are not, then decreasing the length of each jump will help.

Another exercise best done on grass or a receptive surface.

Learn more / further reading

  1. Drill Examples
  2. Drill Types
  3. Running Technique
  4. Training for your Event

 


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