Principles of Agility Training, Part 2

Improve your reaction time with an agility training drill progression from STACK expert John Cissik.

In Part 1 of this agility training series, we covered fundamental agility principles. However, the challenge with principles and guidelines is that they sound great, but they can be difficult to incorporate into your training.

Now that you have a solid understanding of agility principles, learn how to apply them to your program. Start by taking a simple drill and gradually applying the principles of agility to it. Repeat each of the drills below three to five times.

Drill #1: 10-Yard Sprints

Focus on building an explosive start, running fast and a maintaining good sprinting form. To perform this drill:

  • Get into an athletic stance
  • Sprint ten yards

Drill #2: Stop/Start 

This drill reinforces the principles of Drill #1 while adding stops and starts. To perform this drill:

  • Set up three cones: one at the starting line, one at five yards and one at fifteen yards
  • Get into an athletic stance
  • When ready, start explosively and sprint to the five-yard line
  • Come to a complete stop
  • Start explosively again and run through the fifteen-yard line

Drill #3: Start/Stop/Shuffle

Set up six cones in the pattern shown below. To perform this drill:

  • Stand by the first cone in an athletic stance
  • When ready, start explosively and sprint five yards to the second cone
  • Come to a complete stop
  • Shuffle to the right or left five yards to cone 3
  • Sprint 10 yards through the finish line at cone 4

Agility Drill

Drill #4: Start/Stop/Backpedal

  • Start explosively, run five yards and come to a complete stop
  • Backpedal five yards
  • Run forward 10 yards through the finish line

Drill #5: Start/Stop/Shuffle

This drill reinforces all the skills that have been covered to this point, but it also requires you to react to a coach or teammate. No cones needed for this drill.

  • Get into athletic stance facing coach
  • On command, start explosively
  • Sprint forward until coach tells you to stop
  • Wait for coach's cue, then shuffle in the direction coach says
  • When coach gives the command, sprint forward or backward

For more drills, check out STACK's Agility Guide.

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