One of the most common drills that athletes of various sports will perform is ladder drills. You might have seen people going through ladder drills at your local park or gym. One of the main reasons why they perform these drills is to improve speed and agility.
Many in the fitness community have come to question the efficacy of these drills and if they actually do improve a person's speed. If you are struggling with this question, this quick guide can help you understand how a speed ladder can help improve your speed.
How Speed Ladders Improve Speed
Speed ladders can be very effective drills to help people improve their speed, as it focuses on training the muscles most used when sprinting.
A few of the many reasons why people use ladder drills for speed include:
Improve the Connection between the Body and the Mind
The first major benefit of ladder drills is improving the connection between the body and the mind. Every time you intend to move, the mind sends a signal throughout the body, strengthening certain muscles.
The different messages that the brain sends throughout the body can also help stabilize certain joints. The simple process of running is actually a very complicated process of the body contracting and relaxing muscle groups at certain intervals to make the movement possible.
Therefore, when going through a ladder drill, you train your brain to send those signals out faster, allowing the brain and different muscle groups to work better together. By training how the brain interacts with different muscle groups, you can not only run faster, but you can also accelerate more consistently.
Helps Maintain Excellent Balance
When performing ladder drills for speed, you will be moving forwards, backward, and side to side very quickly. You will shift your center of gravity often throughout the drill and might even lose your balance and fall.
These exercises help you maintain a center of gravity and shift your balance more effectively without falling. You will often have to maintain speed while avoiding or fending off an opponent in sports like football and soccer. Therefore, by working on these ladder drills, you will be better prepared to run while shifting your center of gravity.
Over the course of completing these drills, you can even make them more complicated by adding other variables to them. You can also find plenty of advanced ladder drills specific to your sport.
How Often Should You Perform these Ladder Drills for Speed
While performing ladder drills is one of the most effective training drills that athletes can find, it can take a toll on your body. Remember to perform these ladder drills every other day, in order to give your legs plenty of rest.
You can perform these drills even before training as a warm-up if you are a more seasoned athlete. If you are doing these drills with resistance bands, you should only push yourself a little, and rest for at least a day before working with resistance bands again.
Becoming Faster Through Ladder Drills
Ladder drills can be very effective in helping athletes increase their speed, mainly by improving the coordination between the brain and the body. While it strengthens various muscle groups that will help athletes run faster, it will also improve the neural connection that can help messages transfer faster and make the complicated process of contracting and relaxing much faster.
So if you're looking to improve your speed, one of the best ways to go about it would be through ladder drills.
Bandit Sports offers a great speed ladder that is both affordable and high quality. This speed ladder comes with a carrying case and has adjustable rungs to give you the ability to change up your workout. This speed ladder is sure to help you improve your speed and agility.
Bandit Sports offers many other baseball training aids to help improve your speed and agility, and any of them make the best baseball gift for the baseball player in your life!