Russell Westbrook is fast.
One second, he’s jogging with the ball in his hand at half court, calmly surveying the defense. Then, in the blink of an eye, he’s speeding toward the hoop, like an Italian sports car going from 0 to 60 in less than three seconds.
Westbrook’s explosive speed has become his thing, and his almost chaotic style serves as the perfect complement to teammate Kevin Durant’s classical, controlled brand of scoring dominance. But although Westbrook’s explosive style of play pays dividends, it also involves a risk of injury, as Westbrook has recently experienced. That’s why Dwight Daub, director of athletic performance for the Thunder, focuses on instability training, which helps an athlete adjust to being off-balance and stay stable when something unexpected happens.
“We’re dealing with some of the greatest athletes in the world,” Daub says. “Placing them in an environment [in training] where their central nervous system must react can help them stay out of an injury later.”
Westbrook’s combination of strength and speed makes him one of the most dynamic players in the NBA. Try his workout below and kick your game into high gear.
Russell Westbrook’s Speed Workout
Physioball TRX Row
- Lie flat on your back beneath two TRX straps.
- Place your feet up on top of a physioball.
- Grab the straps and lift yourself up as if you were doing a Pull-Up, until your body is parallel to the ground. Lower yourself back to the ground and repeat.
Sets/Reps: 3-4 x 6-10
Single-Leg DB Curl-to-Press
- Stand on your right leg with your left leg bent and foot slightly off the ground.
- Hold dumbbells at your sides with your palms facing in.
- Curl the dumbbells to your chest, then press them overhead.
- Lower the dumbbells to your chest, then your sides, and repeat.
Sets/Reps: 3 x 8 each leg
Walking DB Push-Up to Row
- Begin in plank position gripping a dumbbell in each hand.
- Step forward with each arm and leg, moving yourself forward slightly.
- Lower your body into a Push-Up.
- Press back up to a Plank.
- Row the dumbbells to your torso one at a time. Repeat.
Sets/Reps: 2-4 x 8 each side