Perfecting the Eurostep From the Gym to the Court, Phase 1: Force Absorption

Prepare your body for the Eurostep with this workout from STACK expert T.J. Allan.

The Eurostep is one of the best offensive moves in basketball. Whether you are splitting the defense, avoiding a charge or getting a shot off in the lane, it is extremely effective. Steve Nash, Dwayne Wade and Manu Ginoboli routinely use it to embarrass the best defenders in the NBA.

Countless videos and articles detail Eurostep technique, including one on STACK.com. However, there's almost nothing out there on training for it in the weight room. This is unfortunate, because a plyometric program can greatly enhance the Eurostep move.

Below is the first (four week) phase of a 12-week plyometric training program specifically designed to make your Eurostep more devastating. Phase 1 teaches proper force absorption. For optimal results, combine it with your strength training.

Perform the following exercises after your dynamic warm-up and before your strength training. If you do an upper/lower-body split, use this on your lower body day.

Iman Shumpert Eurostep

Iman Shumpert demonstrates the Eurostep

Day 1: Two-Leg Emphasis 

Side-to-Side Low Pogo Jumps

  • Assume athletic position with feet together
  • Quickly jump from side to side; maintain slight knee bend and focus on speed

Sets/Reps: 2x50 with 60 seconds rest

Side-to-Side High Pogo Jumps

  • Assume athletic position with feet together
  • Quickly jump from side to side; maintain slight knee bend and focus on height
  • Repeat for specified reps

Sets/Reps: 2x15 with 60 seconds rest

Lateral Box Absorption Landings

  • Assume athletic stance on 12-inch box
  • Hop off to the side
  • Land in quarter-squat position with soft knees; maintain upright posture
  • Perform rep on opposite side

Sets/Reps: 3x8 each way with 90 seconds rest

Lateral Hurdle Jumps

  • Place one six- to eight-inch hurdle on ground
  • Assume athletic stance to left of hurdle
  • Hop over hurdle; hold landing for two seconds
  • Return to start position; repeat
 for specified reps

Sets/Reps: 3x6 with 90 seconds rest

Day 2: Single-Leg Emphasis  

Side-to-Side Low Pogo Jumps

  • Same as above, but on one leg at a time

Sets/Reps: 2x50 with 60 seconds rest

Side-to-Side High Pogo Jumps

  • Same as above, but on one leg at a time

Sets/Reps: 2x15 with 60 seconds rest

Single-Leg Lateral Hurdle Jumps

  • Place one six- to eight-inch hurdle on ground
  • Standing to left of hurdle, balance on right leg
  • Hop over hurdle; hold landing for three seconds
  • Return to start position; repeat 
for specified reps

Sets/Reps: 3x10 each leg with 90 seconds rest

Single-Leg Skater Jumps

  • Stand on left leg
  • Lower into quarter squat and swing right leg behind body
  • Leap up and to the side to form an arc
  • Land on right foot with soft knee and hips
  • Swing left leg behind body and right arm in front to maintain balance; hold position for two seconds
  • Perform in opposite direction; repeat for specified reps

Sets/Reps: 3x5 each direction with 90 seconds rest

Weekly Progressions

Try to increase the height of the hurdle each week, but only if your landings are perfect. Otherwise, focus on improving your landing technique.

Remember, the goal of this phase is to learn how to absorb as much force as possible. Don't get into a jumping contest. When you land, you should look graceful. During Phase 2,  you will use what you learned in this phase to propel yourself even higher into the air. But don't be surprised if the distance you cover when performing the Eurostep has already improved.


Photo Credit: Getty Images // Thinkstock

Topics: BASKETBALL TRAINING | STRENGTH TRAINING | BASKETBALL WORKOUTS | STANCE | SWING