Three Football Drills to Increase Power and Improve Footwork

Build power and improve footwork for next football season with these simple plyo football drills.

Tire Flip

If you want to dominate on the gridiron, you need to be quick and explosive. As a lineman, running back, defensive back or receiver, the faster you can move in tight spaces, the better you will be able to get open, break through a hole or make a play on the ball.

Plyometric exercises are the best way to build explosive speed. They force your body to produce power at the speedy pace you're expected to play at in a game. Also, plyos improve your footwork, so you will be balanced and in position at the right time.

Perform the following three plyo exercises once or twice a  week during your lower-body or speed workouts—after your dynamic warm-up but before the rest of your workout to prevent fatigue from negatively affecting your power.

Speed Tire Flip and Jump

Because they engage the entire body, Tire Flips have become an essential part of any strength training program. By flipping the tire as fast as possible and adding jumps, you develop your conditioning as well as the explosive power you need to burst off the line.

  • Use heavy truck or tractor tire (in the 200- to 300-pound range)
  • Bend at hips and knees; reach down to grab tire
  • Drive up through hips and knees; flip tire forward
  • Jump into center of tire, then jump out to opposite side
  • Turn around and face tire
  • Repeat pattern as quickly as possible for specified time

Sets/Duration: 3-4x30-60 seconds with 60-second rest

Hexagon Drill

Essential for every football player, proper footwork improves acceleration from a standstill and helps with reaction and change in direction.

  • Using athletic tape or chalk, mark hexagon measuring one foot by one foot on ground
  • Assume athletic stance in middle of hexagon
  • Jump over line in front; jump back to center
  • Jump diagonally to right over line; jump back to center
  • Continue pattern around hexagon in clockwise fashion for one full rotation; perform in opposite direction
  • Repeat for specified time

Sets/Duration: 2-3x30-60 seconds with 30-second rest

Diamond Drill

Football involves constant movement, changes of direction and pulling or pushing against opponents. By performing speed drills attached to a resistance band, you simulate change of direction with and against resistance that you experience during games.

  • Place four cones five yards apart in diamond shape
  • Assume athletic stance at cone 1 with resistance band around waist and secured behind you
  • Have partner point to cone; sprint to specified cone
  • Sprint back to cone 1 and prepare for another sprint
  • Repeat for specified time

Sets/Duration: 2-3x30-60 seconds with 30-second rest


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