Photo: Univ. of South Florida/GoUSFBulls.com
On the football field, speed wins. But guess what, skill position guys? Speed isn’t something you can build in isolation. You don’t get faster without getting stronger. Simply put: Strength is speed. Speed is strength.
Get stronger the right way, and you’ll be harder for opposing defenses to chase down. Hans Straub, the new head strength and conditioning coach for the University of South Florida, is here to help you with that. Straub joined USF this year after serving on the strength staff at the Stanford Cardinal football program, where his athletes scorched opponents by an average score of 27 to 17 (the lowest points allowed in the Pac-12) en route to a Pac-12 championship and Rose Bowl victory.
Straub’s off-season strength training program is designed to make you a stronger, faster, more explosive athlete. To blast past your opponents next season, you need to train right this summer. Click the link below to download Straub’s training plan, and remember the mission statement for USF’s offseason strength program: “To be a champion, you cannot do things right once in a while; you have to do it right all the time.”
Summer Workout Guidelines
For every lift, your priorities should be (in order):
- Speed of movement (with full control of the weight)
- Resistance level
If the reps of an exercise decrease on the next set, challenge yourself to increase your training weight.
If the reps of an exercise increase on the week, challenge yourself to keep the same training weight but improve your technique.
If the reps of an exercise decrease on the next week, challenge yourself to increase your training weight.
Decelerate resistance (barbell, dumbbell, body weight) with control on the way down. Accelerate with control on the way up to finish the rep.
Record your reps for max reps exercises, and record your weight for exercises that use a weight other than your body weight.
Work down the card, pairing lower body movements with upper body movements, working to improve your overall tempo each week.
Perform a dynamic warm-up before and cool-down stretching after every workout.
DB Standing T.Y.I Raise w/ Thumbs Up
Stand with your feet shoulder width apart and knees slightly bent, holding lightweight dumbbells at your sides with your arms straight. Raise your arms to your sides until they are parallel to the ground with your thumbs pointing up. Lower your arms to the start position. Perform a second raise with your arms at a 45-degree angle with your body, and a third raise with your arms directly in front of your shoulders. Repeat this pattern for the specified number of reps.
Single-Arm DB Bench Press
Single-Arm DB Row
DB L.W.I Press w/ Thumbs Up
Stand with your feet shoulder width apart and knees slightly bent, holding dumbbells at shoulder level with your elbows in line with your body and your forearms perpendicular to the floor. Press the dumbbells straight overhead, and then lower them in control to the start position. Perform a second press with your arms at a 45-degree angle with your body, and a third press with your arms directly in front of your shoulders. Repeat this pattern for the specified number of reps.
Dead Bug Series (R/R, L/L, R/L, L/R, All 4)
DB Lying T.Y.I. Raise w/Thumbs Up
Lie on your stomach with your arms straight to your sides to form a ‘T’ with your upper body, holding lightweight dumbbells so your thumbs are pointing up. Pinch your shoulder blades together and raise the dumbbells into the air as far as your range of motion allows. Lower to the start position. Perform a second raise with your arms at 45-degree angle with your body to form a ‘Y’, and a third raise with your arms parallel to each other to form an ‘I’. Repeat this pattern for the specified number of reps.
Single-Arm DB Incline
Single-Leg Glute Bridge
Power Clean + High Pull
Glute Ham Raise
Lie on the ground with your legs straight and perpendicular to the ground, and your arms out to your sides. Slowly lower your right leg until it’s six inches above the ground. Raise your right leg to return to the start position. Perform a second rep with your leg at a 45-degree angle with your body, and a third rep with your leg at a 90-degree angle with your body. Repeat for the specified number of reps, and perform with your left leg.
You can also download workouts for linemen and big skill players for free.