Sand is a great training tool for improving speed and agility. It provides resistance that challenges your muscles, helping to make you faster and more explosive. The constant shifting under your feet engages small stabilizer muscles that improve balance and reduce the risk of injury. Plus, sand training gives you an excuse to work out in the great outdoors.
Below you will find three sand training drills that will improve your speed and agility. You can perform them on the beach, a sand volleyball court or a long-jump pit. A sandbox might be too small. Perform these drills once or twice a week during your speed workouts.
In sports, you rarely run long distances in a straight line. As its name suggests, this drill teaches you to start, stop and start again as quickly and efficiently as possible to simulate actual gameplay.
When you are comfortable with this drill, remove the middle cone. Have a partner call out when to start and stop to simulate the unpredictability of live competition.
Shuffling is a transitional movement. It's not something that you perform for an extended period of time on the field. This drill improves this aspect of your game by teaching you to transition from a shuffle to a sprint.
Once you are comfortable with this drill, get a partner to throw a ball ahead of you as you turn out of your shuffle, and strive to catch it. This will help to focus your sprinting efforts and make you faster.
This drill teaches you how to backpedal and change direction into a sprint. Similar to the shuffle, backpedaling is a transitional movement, but it's still an essential part of your game.
Again, once you are comfortable with this drill, get a partner to throw a ball ahead of you as you turn at cone two, and strive to catch it. This will help to focus your sprinting efforts and make you faster.