Agility circuit training is an effective addition to your workout routine, especially if participate in other sports activities such as tennis or basketball. It can complement your exercise routine and provide you with another cardio activity.
Defining the Training
With this type of training, you are improving the way your body reacts to sudden changes by increasing your efficiency and reaction time. Your training follows a set pattern of intense cardio exercises, with a specific goal or number of repetitions. The circuit is then repeated one or several times, depending upon the exercises and your level of fitness.
Agility training focuses on ways to increase your agility, which is a necessary quality for an athlete or even the at-home practitioner. In effect, you are teaching your body to make the right moves, at the right time.
Benefits of Agility Circuit Training
Too often, sport training concentrates on speed. Speed of course, is essential in many competitive sports. The agile athlete uses energy more efficiently. Because you have trained your body to respond, you are less likely to get injured from missteps or falls.
The process also increases your mental alertness. You play better because you are more alert to the changes going on around you. If the ball suddenly heads down court, you can quickly react and stay in the game.
Ideally, your agility circuit training will replicate the types of movements required of the sport in which you participate to receive the maximum benefits. While you will focus on speed, agility exercises also concentrate on balance and coordination.
If you haven't done it for a while, you may find jumping rope is not the same playtime activity it was growing up. It requires strong ankles and good coordination. Jumping rope is one of those types of exercises which take only a short workout to get the blood flowing. Start with short two minute sessions until you get stronger.
Agility runs are another simple, yet useful exercise. Delineate an area free of obstructions with small cones. Create a path within the area of sharp curves or circles, marking turns with additional cones. Again, the path should reflect how you may typically be moving in your sport.
Begin by running to the first cone. Maintain your speed as you turn to follow the direction of the next cone. Agility training requires that you act quickly. For added challenge, you can sprint along your path, changing directions and running backwards for one segment.
Create a few different courses, going in the opposite direction so that you are working your entire body. You may find that one side of your body is stronger than the other. If this is the case, work the weaker side with some additional reps until you are moving in a more balanced fashion.
Agility ladders offer additional challenge and opportunities for you to improve your coordination and footwork. As the name implies, this training device is a rope ladder with either a single set of rungs or a double set of plastic or PVC rungs. Units come in different sizes. Some have detachable portions so that you can create your own agility drill with a custom layout.
To get familiar with its use, try a simple drill such as hopscotch. Hop from one square to the next as if you were playing hopscotch. The challenge lies with staying within each square. Begin standing at the end of your ladder. Hop into the first square using your left foot. Hop into the next square or squares landing with both feet and so on.
The jumping activity will increase your heart rate, giving you a good cardio workout. It requires control as you stay balanced when you land, with only a small target area. Strong abs and legs will keep you steady. As you get stronger, you can increase your speed with a more intense workout.
Whatever methods you use, create a short drill of exercises which you will repeat. Agility exercises will test your cardiovascular system, so they needn't be very long. A 20-minute workout will burn off hundreds of calories.
Good for Life
No matter if you are training as an athlete or just working out at home, agility training will improve the way you get around in your world. Because it is a weight-bearing activity, you will also help prevent osteoporosis.