Low Box Drills by John Gaglione

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For this installment of the series of upper body movement training, I’ll discuss low box training. Low box training is a good way to improve speed, agility, and quickness for athlete of all ages. When we talk about low box training, we’re talking about a box that is less than 12 inches high. This allows most athletes to accomplish these drills without having a huge strength demand. Low box training is a great tool for teaching athletes how to reposition their feet during training.

These drills can certainly be regressed to just simple line drills if the athlete isn’t as strong or coordinated enough to perform the low box drills. These drills can also be progressed to higher boxes if the goal is to increase strength or power. These drills are great for building coordination as well as foot and hand speed. As with normal size box drills, we still want to land softly and under control on the box. We never want to sacrifice speed for form, especially in the beginning phases. As the athlete gets more advanced and stronger, he can progress to a slightly higher box.


These drills can be used as part of a movement training session or metabolic conditioning circuit. As in all jumping and hopping drills, it is important to make sure the joints are in good alignment when performing all movements. Make sure the knees don’t cave in on the lower body movements and watch the position of the wrists and scapula during the upper body movements. These drills should be performed as quickly as possible with good form. I typically use six-second sets to ensure high intensity, but they can certainly be performed for longer durations if conditioning is the goal of the session. Depending on the sport that the athlete plays, you can manipulate the time frame to mimic the energy system demands of the sport.

Linear foot transfer: The athlete will start by facing the box with one foot on the box and one foot off the box. The athlete will jump up and switch the position of his feet so now the opposite foot is on the box. This will be done for a set amount of time.

Lateral foot transfer: The athlete will start by standing to the side of the box with one foot on the box and one foot off the box. The athlete will push off the outside leg and switch the position of his feet so now the opposite foot is on the box. This will be done for a set amount of time.

Wide outs: The athlete will start with both feet straddling the box in an athletic stance. The athlete will jump up and bring both feet on the box and then repeat for a set amount of time.

Linear hand transfer: The athlete will start by facing the box with one foot on the box and one foot off the box. The athlete will jump up and switch the position of his feet so now the opposite foot is on the box. This will be done for a set amount of time.

Lateral hand transfer: The athlete will start by standing to the side of the box with one foot on the box and one foot off the box. The athlete will push off the outside leg and switch the position of his feet so now the opposite foot is on the box. This will be done for a set amount of time.

Hand wide outs: The athlete will start with both hands straddling the box in an athletic stance. The athlete will jump up and bring both hands on the box and then repeat for a set amount of time.

Linear foot transfer double touch: The athlete will perform split jumps but double touch the box. The athlete will tap the box twice before switching to the other leg.

Lateral foot transfer double touch: The athlete will perform lateral push offs but double touch the box. The athlete will tap the box twice before switching to the other leg.

Wide outs double touch: The athlete will perform wide outs but double touch the box. The athlete will tap the box twice before switching to the other leg.

Linear hand transfer double touch: The athlete will perform split hand jumps but double touch the box. The athlete will tap the box twice before switching to the other hand.

Lateral hand transfer double touch: The athlete will perform hand lateral push offs but double touch the box. The athlete will tap the box twice before switching to the other hand.

Hand wide outs double touch: The athlete will perform hand wide outs but double touch the box. The athlete will tap the box twice before switching to the other hand.

References

  • Chu D (1998) Jumping into plyometrics. 2nd edition. Champaign, IL: Human Kinetics Publishers.
  • Boyle M (2010) Advances in functional training: training techniques for coaches, personal trainers and athletes. Santa Cruz, CA: On Target Publications.
  • Boyle M (2006) Designing strength training programs and facilities (Adobe Digital Editions). Retrieved from: http://www.strengthcoach.com/.
  • Boyle M (2004) Functional training for sports. 1st edition. Champaign, IL: Human Kinetics Publishers.
  • Remedios R (2010) Chaos interview: how to get faster! [Web log message]. Retrieved from: http://www.coachdos.com/75/chaos-interview-how-to-get-faster/.
  • Rooney M (2008) Training for warriors: the ultimate mixed martial arts workout. New York, New York: Harper Paperbacks.
  • Smith J (2006) The chaos training manual (Adobe Digital Editions). Retrieved from: http://www.dieselcrew.com/chaos-training-manual/.
  • Low Box Training for Athletes (2006) Prod. Lee Taft/Sports Speed. DVD.

Submitted by DMorgan on Fri, 12/31/2010 - 11:37pm.

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