My Top 10 Power Movements
Ahhh yeah, here we go and once again it’s on!
Back when I was a lot younger (like any young kid) I used to watch in amazement all the high octane athletes doing there thing when it cam to game time. Sports from track and field to football and even hockey. Track and Field was my go to sport as sprinting seemed to come naturally and felt great. To this day sprinting is one of my favorite of all time things to do.
There’s something about a well built powerful athlete that is jaw dropping! Not everyone can be one so maybe that’s what makes it that much more impressive to watch. From people like Lolo Jones, one of my favorite track and field athletes, to Evander Holyfield, these people are amazing at what they can do.
From a young age I made it my mission to try my hardest to develop the raw explosive power that a lot of these athletes had. I wanted to know what made a human being move the way they did.
To develop speed one must know that you have to train fast to be fast. In other words I figured out through some coaching that all I had to do was move fast and all would be good right?
This is true, but a lot of what athletes are able to do are god given talents, so work with what you’ve got and train explosively! Do what you can do and give it everything you got.
My Top 10 Power Movements
One of my favorite lifts of all time has to be the hang clean! I first learned about this movement in high school, but was taught at the U of Nebraska in Lincoln. If you want to develop power this is the one to use. It’s a multi joint lift that will hit every muscle in the human body. It develops explosive power in the hips and legs.
Before working with the clean you will want to feel how the bar should be moved accordingly to maximize your full potential for increasing power. This is why I always hit a few sets of full pulls beforehand. It teaches you to move the bar off the ground properly as well as to engage the hips through a full range of motion followed by elevating yourself upward and beyond.
Following after the clean I love doing power presses. There is some talk about how lifting overhead causes problems of the shoulder girdle and spine area, but not here. I lift things over my head frequently. Use common sense if you have shoulder problems and regress your movements to body weight. Those who do this movement can expect to increase power in the hips and legs as well as strengthen the knees, ankles and wrist while pressing over head.
A very easy lift to start out on before the complex barbell lifts is to take a look at a dumbbell snatches. This movement has worked wonders for shoulder stabilization and explosiveness. If you don’t have access to a barbell a variety of these guys with various rep schemes and weights are great.
If you want to increase your vertical, practicing how to jump using a box is golden. This movement will develop tremendous power through the hips and legs as well plus teach the athlete how to control his/her body-weight while landing. It’s critically important that you do not let your knees buckle upon landing. Land soft as a feather!
Learning how to jump will directly carry over to your sprinting. During the warmer months, hitting sprints is my go to power move. This one is a calorie incinerator and will work all muscles in the human body. Its violent action requires many muscles to be recruited upon execution. Sprinting should be approached with caution with a lengthy warm up routine. Pulling muscles in not fun so make sure to warm up before hand.
Before you begin any exercise program check to see where you’re at on your body-weight movements because this next power move will work wonders for the lower body IF you can squat with your body weight first. Squat jumps are awesome for hip and leg power development and much safer than a loaded barbell if you’re new to lifting. Repetitions anywhere from 5 to 10, but no more than 10 work good for me.
From the squat jump to alternate lunge jumping we go! Most times I will superset these two movements either to turn the CNS on before a heavier lift or work explosiveness in the top portion of my workout. I always start with a power movement followed by a lower body movement and beyond. You can even work laterally with these guys to train another angle which I’m a huge fan of.
Broad jumps will also fall into the category of power body-weight movements. Every warm up these guys get hit followed by skips for height and distance. It’s vitally important that we work athleticism constantly in everything we do including our warm-up selection. It’s all planned for a specific purpose and that is to build a powerful individual.
When you need to rely on your strength and power to get a task done it’s available to you, but if you don’t train for it you will never have that extra boost or hop in your step. Training with a focus on becoming more powerful is the spinach that Popeye eats when he’s ready to go! It’s the color green that the hulk turns into when you make him angry and it’s the domination of your competitors that makes them fear you.