SPORT-SPECIFIC TRAINING: LACROSSE
The sport of lacrosse requires a strong foundation involving a variety athletic abilities. To create a strong foundation and optimize athletic performance while reducing risk for injury, strength training in a variety of modalities is pivotal. Check out some of our current favorite lacrosse sport-specific exercises below and our reasoning behind them!
Resisted Cable Core Rotational LAX Swing:
Rotational stability and power of the trunk, hips, and shoulders are critical to maximizing shooting speed and power. Training lacrosse athletes in power resisted rotations develops stability and coordination of the core and hips, as well as strength and power in this movement pattern. This strong ability to rotate the core and hips with fluidity will translate to an increase in shooting power and speed.
Zoid Footwork Combo with “Split Dodge”
Fast footwork, reactive changes in footwork patterning, hand eye-coordination and multitasking all challenge the Central Nervous System (CNS). Footwork drills intermixed with verbal cueing can aid in developing athletic neuromuscular coordination, creating more efficient movements and an increased ability to react to extrinsic/environmental cues. Building a strong foundation in these fundamentals allows for lacrosse players to begin the process of developing explosive movements.
Tuck to Dodge Progressions:
Building a strong foundation in athletic position, landing mechanics and reactive movements is important to begin developing explosive power in multiple directions. Training lacrosse players in the proper hip, knee, and ankle mechanics of generating force, absorbing force, and reflecting force is essential to optimizing dodging performance. Using drills and exercises that teach athletes how to put force down into the ground to create space is a great method to effectively improve a lacrosse players ability to dodge against opponents. (See our previous post on basketball landing mechanics for more insight into landing mechanics and what we are looking for in these drills).
Punching Bag Check/Slash Drill:
Like many sports, lacrosse not only requires training of the lower body, but also must emphasize core integrity and UE power and mechanics. Regardless of and athlete’s position on the field, all lacrosse players must possess the ability to check the body of an opponent with large amounts of force. Aside from sport practice, athletes can be trained to produce the force needed to lay hard checks in a controlled environment. Training in a reactive, dynamic drill will teach young lacrosse players not only how to generate the force needed for good checks, but also the core and scapular stability needed to reduce risk of injury to the wrists, elbows, spine and shoulders.
Indo Board Wall Ball
Wall ball is critical for the development of stick skills for passing, catching, shooting, and an overall ability to carry the ball. We had to throw this one in because it is just fun. Here we layer traditional wall ball in an unstable environment, allowing the athlete to work on an essential sport skill while also stressing a focus on core engagement, and balance of weight distribution bilaterally. Combining these two elements into one exercise will help athletes develop the ability to engage their core and hips more while carrying the ball throughout a practice or game.
Win the Day!