In the spring, Seattle Seahawks receiver DK Metcalf, 23, decided to test his speed against world-class sprinters in an international track meeting. But while he is one of football’s best deep threats, his 100-meter results were not impressive: he finished in ninth place in his heat (10.37 seconds). Game speed does not translate into sprint competition, says Metcalf’s coach Nic Hill. Metcalf does not focus on linear speed in its daily work. Receivers need to drive fast – and also change direction fast. So he trains for speed, but must also refine his ability to brake. “He should not just be fast, but able to stop at a dime, change direction and accelerate again at a high speed,” Hill says.
Master these exercises and you will do both.
SPEED YOUR BODY!
Stair rail deadlift
Stand inside a loaded trap bar. Tighten your abs, push your butt back, lower your torso, and grasp the handle of the bar. Stand explosively and squeeze your glutes. Do 3 sets of 3 reps. Don’t focus on lifting heavy, Hill says. Instead, work on lifting weights quickly each time.
2. Fast jumps
Metcalf trains its ability to land and then explodes rapidly with obstacle hops with four 36-inch-high obstacles at approximately 2-meter intervals. He jumps over each one, lands and then takes over the next obstacle as fast as possible. No obstacles? Use all 4 obstacles you have. Make 3 sets.
. . . AND THEN SING IT DOWN!
1. Split Drop
Start by standing, feet together. Jump a few inches off the floor. Land with your left foot forward and right foot back, and quickly lower into a reverse lunge. Stop your back knee before it hits the floor. Pause, then press back to stand. Do 3 sets of 5 reps per. Page.
Mark a distance of 5 yards and a distance of 10 yards. Sprint 5 yards as hard as possible, then slow down quickly. (It may take you a few steps when you first do this.) Back pedal back to the start, then sprint 10 yards. Slow down quickly again. Go back to the beginning. Make 4 sets.
This story appears in the September 2021 issue of Men’s health.
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