How To Increase Speed and Quickness In Youth Athletes

Are you interested in learning how to improve the speed and performance of your youth athletes, while minimizing injuries?

Of course you are…

Well, I have a simple little exercise, or perhaps I should say “exercise pattern” that I want to share with you today.  This exercise pattern is a must to include in a youth athlete’s training program.

But before I get into this, let’s first take a step back and determine what our goals are when working with youth athletes.

If you’re a parent or coach you probably want your youth athletes to be faster, quicker, more athletic and avoid injuries.

Now, let’s consider how an athlete moves…

Any athletic situation requires that the body moves in 3 separate planes of motion:

Sagittal Plane

The Sagittal plane passes through the body front to back, so dividing it into left and right. Movements in this plane are the up and down movements of flexion and extension.  Exercises that fit into this category are Bench Presses, Squats, Deadlifts, Rows and Overhead Presses.

Frontal Plane

The frontal plane divides the body into front and back. Movements in this plane are sideways movements, called abduction and adduction.  The Frontal Plane is commonly neglected in a youth athlete’s training program… and that’s a big mistake.  The stabilizing muscles that are trained with exercises in the Frontal Plane are the ones that help you perform better, reduce injuries in both the upper and lower body, and carry over for life.

Transverse Plane

This plane divides the body into top and bottom. Movements in this plane are rotational in nature, such as internal and external rotation, pronation and supination.  It’s crucial that a youth athlete gets exposed to training in the Transverse Plane of Motion because this will help activate the core muscles and develop athletic power during competition.

Most coaches and trainers make the mistake of training youth athletes in the Sagittal Plane of motion.  Traditional weight lifting exercises that you see in a gym are usually in the Sagittal Plane.  Although getting strong with these exercises is important, the Frontal Plane and Transverse Plane of motion can’t be forgotten.

If an athlete only trains in the Sagittal Plane of Motion with exercises such as Squats, Deadlifts, Bench Presses, Rows, Overhead Presses they will be limited in their ability to perform to their fullest potential.  However, if an athlete develops properly, includes these types of exercises in moderation and in combination with exercises for the Frontal and Transverse Planes, they will be faster, quicker, more powerful and reduce injuries.

Be sure to have a competent coach or trainer design your youth athletes’ training programs.  Remember, we are trying to develop the youth athlete for long-term development.

Train hard, train smart.

Steve Preston

P.S. Young athletes can become discouraged, disengaged and uninterested if they are not seeing results and/or being exposed to fun and effective practice tactics and strategies.  We have a FREE training guide you can access today.  I encourage you to…

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