SuperFlex® Bands – Performance Training for Baseball– see video below
In this our latest blog I wanted to share with you some different ideas on how to use longer looped movement bands for performance training. So we collaborated with Founder Zach Lush of DeLucas Sports Performance to help demonstrate some of the band training drills that he uses with his baseball players. The drills shown in the video are great for baseball but can also be applied to just about any movement sport. Long continual looped bands can be used to enhance technique, physical conditioning, and explosive movement.
What you notice in the video is that the different resistances of the bands are used to accomplish different goals. For example in Drill #1 we are using a triple red movement band. The lighter resistance of this band does not overload the athlete and compromise technical form but challenges the athlete. If you working movement technique, footwork patterns or sprinting form be careful not to overload and add too much resistance which could change mechanics.
Heavier tension movement bands like a triple purple can be a very effective way to challenge athletes and condition them. In the video we show some great ways to work the bands for cardio conditioning. For example Drill # 10 Forward back/ sprint will get the heart rate pumping. Try that drill in the sand or on the field and you will really see what I mean.
Explosion is the one of the hottest words in baseball performance training. Bands allow you to work on speed and power by adding more resistance to the exercises. Learning to explode through the tension of the band is a great way to increase your power output. Especially in younger developing bodies and in-season where we what to develop or maintain speed and strength without overloading the joints and spine with heavier weights.
Resistance Bands also allow you to put a light load on the athlete with no mass. By adding resistance to the specific exercises and then performing contrast sets without resistance stimulates fast twitch fiber through muscle neural adaption.
I really like this band quote from famous shortstop and Hall of Famer Barry Larkin. “You steal base on the first step. What I like about the bands is it’s my strength against the band strength. I gotta explode through the band to increase my strength and speed at the same time. “
Video drill names:
- #1 Crossover bound continuous
- #2 Resisted lateral bound with pitcher balance point
- #3 Crossover bound to sprint
- #4 Broad jump to stabilize
- #5 Ladder Drills (Icky shuffle f/b, cross in front skip f/b, cross behind f/b)
- #6 Lateral slide with band
- #7 Power ball toss w/ sprint
- #8 Hurdle jump to power ball toss w/ sprint
- #9 High knees
- #10 Forward /back sprint
- #11 Resisted to non-resisted broad jumps
- Hope you found our latest blog and video helpful and informative. Now, get your bands out and get to work! –Dave Herman
Push-ups with Resistance Bands (see video below )
Here are two great and different ways to use resistance bands when performing push- ups.
Bands for Assistance
The first way I would like to talk about is how to use bands to assist a person in their push-up if they lack the strength to perform it properly on their own. This is also a great way that bands can be used to help learn correct push-up technique as well as build confidence in the exercise.
I fell into this assisting band set-up last week when I was training a 14-year-old female golfer. It was our 2nd session together and found she could not do a push-up. I took 2 resistance bands and tied them over a bar and while she was still standing I looped each band around each shoulder and then placed her into a push-up position facing away from the bar.
As she descended down into the push-up the bands tension increased which helped to assist her back up to her starting position. It worked great and the band set-up helped her to complete 7 solid reps and right away I could see confidence had been built (See video). As she continues to get stronger I’ll decrease to lighter resistance bands and soon no bands at all! I’ll post another video in the near future to show her improvement.
Bands for Resistance
Another popular way to use bands is to take a single band and place it in one hand while looping it over the body into the other hand. This band set-up actually increases the resistance during the exercise in both the eccentric phase (lowering of the body) and concentric phase (pushing up). This can make a very challenging push-up depending on what tension bands you use.
This sort of band set-up is more challenging then a traditional push-up set-up because as you begin to lock out on the upward movement the band tension engages tremendously. Imagine having a weight on your upper back.
A couple of safety notes:
- (1) We recommend using push-up bars when performing push-ups to decrease the potential of a wrist injury.
- (2) Place the band around the middle of the back versus directly over the shoulders when performing resisted push-ups.
- (3) Perform a few warm-up reps before adding bands to the resisted push-up.
Core Training with Bands (see core video below )
Resist and Assist
Adding bands to your abdominal routine is a great way to increase resistance. In this video I’m going to show how adding a band can also provide assistance. See bands not only resist but they can assist!
Engage Deep Core Muscles
Learning to engage your deep core muscles is all about proper technique. Resistance bands and excercise balls can help you learn the technique needed to engage those targeted core areas. Simply strengthening the deep core muscles will help to protect the spine, stabilize the body and off course tighten up the mid section.
Bands and Ball
In this blog and video I want to share with you some information on safe and effective ways to engage those deep core muscles by using a band and a small air cushioned Bender Ball. These are great tools not only to resist you but also to assist you if you don’t have the core strength to perform the exercise efficiently.
In the video below I also show you how to use a band and ball to help create low back support through the exercises so the targeted muscles can be engaged in a safe and effective way.
Technique to Engage
A good technique for engaging the deep core muscles is by imaging that you are pressing/squeezing your belly button into your spine and holding. When you’re in this position use the band and ball to help you to control the movement so you can isolate the abs for an even deeper burn.
Reps and Breathe
When you work these exercises do as many reps as need to burn and fatigue the targeted muscles. Do not sacrifice technique and be sure that the band, ball or towel feels comfortable when performing the exercise. These exercises should be performed PAIN FREE!
And don’t forget to breathe. Really focus on your breath throughout the exercises. Exhale on the squeeze!
Now please get to work!