Zigzag Drill for Basketball and Baseball | STACK
X

Become a Better Athlete. Sign Up for our FREE Newsletter.

Zigzag Drill for Basketball and Baseball

April 1, 2007 | Featured in the April 2007 Issue

Must See Basketball Videos

Basketball player by winter; baseball player by spring. It’s a common two-sport combination that leaves little time for training the specific skills each sport demands—unless you train for them together. According to Tim Robertson, owner and director of Speed Strength Systems [Cleveland, Ohio] and trainer to numerous NBA and MLB athletes, there are individual drills you can perform to improve quickness and agility for both sports.

“One is a zigzag drill, where you line up cones at diagonals and sprint from cone to cone,” Robertson says. “The drill works on acceleration, deceleration and change of direction, all of which are involved with both sports.” On the diamond, an example would be a pitcher accelerating off the mound to field a ball. In basketball, point guards are known for accelerating through the lane to attack the hoop.

Zigzag Drill
• Place five to seven cones five to seven yards apart in zigzag pattern
• Start at first cone; sprint to second cone
• Breakdown and cut around second cone; sprint to next cone
• Repeat for entire pattern
• Perform 5-10 reps of drill, 2 times a week

Get even more out of this drill by making it sport-specific. Check out Robertson’s adaptations.

1. Basketball

Distance Set up the zigzag on a basketball court, extending from baseline to baseline.

Sport-Specific Moves Work your ball-handling skills by dribbling a ball as you move through the drill. “You can dribble with the same hand throughout the drill, switch hands after each cone, crossover dribble when you get to a cone or dribble behind your back when you transition from one cone to another,” Robertson says. Another recommendation is to alternate sprinting and laterally shuffling; sprint and dribble between the first two cones, then laterally shuffle and dribble between the next two.

Rest Since basketball requires more endurance than baseball, Robertson suggests using a 1:1 rest-to-work ratio between reps. That will improve your conditioning base.

2. Baseball

Distance Set up the zigzag to cover 30 yards, the span between bases.

Sport-Specific Move Work your hand-eye coordination by fielding a ball while sprinting between cones. “Have a partner throw, roll or bounce a ball toward you so you have to catch the ball en route to the next cone,” Robertson says. “The goal is to be efficient with the movement. Get down appropriately by dropping your hips and lowering your center of gravity while simultaneously minimizing your speed to field the ball.” Once you field the ball, throw it to the side or toss it back to your partner.

Rest Baseball allows for greater rest between sprints. Use a 2:1 rest-to-work recovery. If it takes 10 seconds to get through one rep, rest 20 seconds before starting the next.

Related Exercises

Zigzag Drill
Chad Zimmerman
- Chad Zimmerman is the co-founder of STACK as well as its President. He earned a degree in Chemical Engineering from Carnegie Mellon University where he...
Chad Zimmerman
- Chad Zimmerman is the co-founder of STACK as well as its President. He earned a degree in Chemical Engineering from Carnegie Mellon University where he...
More Cool Stuff You'll Like

The Secret to Tom Brady's Newfound Speed

Rev Up Your Sprint Training With These Complexes

4 Foot Speed Drills to Increase Speed and Agility

How to Improve Your Basketball Quickness in 5 Minutes

Stability Training Can Improve Your Agility and Range of Motion

Get More Explosive Off the Line of Scrimmage Like DeSean Jackson

The Off-Season Baseball Speed and Agility Workout Program

5 Essential Cross Country Workouts Explained

ZSeries 10-Minute Workouts: Track Sprints

3 Speed Drills to Help You Sprint Faster and Lower Your 40 Time

The 5 Elements of a Successful Speed Training Program

12-Week Off-Season Baseball Speed Workout

2-Week Long-Distance Track Workout Training Plan

10 Reasons Why You're Not Getting Faster

How to Train for Speed in Cold Weather

Soccer Speed and Agility Drills for Women

How to Safely Decelerate Faster

3 Simple Tips to Improve Your 40-Yard Dash

4 Powerful Band Agility Drills

Previewing the Fastest Draft Prospects of the 2015 NFL Combine

Improve Your Footwork to Improve Football Agility

Ditch the Sprints. Here's How to Build True Sports Speed

Improve Your Football 40 Time During the Season

Build Game-Breaking Speed With This Exercise

Skipping Drills: The Missing Link From Your Speed Workouts

Make Quick and Powerful Cuts Like Adrian Peterson

The Speed Drill That Set Up DeSean Jackson's 64-Yard Touchdown

Get Faster With the Ultimate Stair Workout

ZSeries 10-Minute Workouts: Multidirectional Run

3 Speed Training Essentials You Must Develop to Get Faster

3 Box Drills That Develop True Game Speed

8 Positions to Lower Your 40-Yard-Dash Time

Reactive Agility: The Next Big Thing in Speed Training

Lengthen Your Stride for Maximum Speed

Burn Your Competition with This Sprint Workout

Sprint Faster With Speed Demons

Here's Why Andre Williams' Breakout Performance Was No Fluke

How to Build First-Step Quickness for Baseball and Softball

Get the Most Out of Foam Rolling

How Sammy Watkins Built His Game-Breaking Speed

STACK Challenge: 300-Yard Shuttle

Michael Johnson's Guide to a Faster 40

ZSeries 10-Minute Workouts: The Treadmill Challenge

Build Strength for Baseball and Softball Speed

Speed Plyometrics to Help You Run Faster

3 Speed Workouts to Improve Your Top-End Sprints

5 Ways to Spice Up Your Ladder Drills

Get Faster With 'The .10 Second Difference' From EXOS