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Young Athletes Cheat-sheet

Iron Camp's Essential Exercise Series for Young Athletes


1. Fundamental Movement Skills

  • A. Balancing

  • Exercise: Stand on one leg, then the other, eyes open and then closed.

  • Purpose: Enhances body awareness, coordination, and stabilizes core muscles.

  • B. Jumping and Landing

  • Exercise: Practice vertical and horizontal jumps, focusing on soft, controlled landings.

  • Purpose: Builds leg strength, improves coordination and landing techniques.

2. Core Strength & Stability

  • A. Planks

  • Exercise: Maintain a straight body position supported on elbows and toes.

  • Purpose: Strengthens core, shoulders, and promotes overall stability.

  • B. Dead Bugs

  • Exercise: Lie on back, arms, and legs up, alternate extending opposite arm and leg.

  • Purpose: Engages core, improves motor coordination.

3. Flexibility & Mobility

  • A. Dynamic Stretching

  • Exercise: Leg swings, arm circles, lunges with a twist.

  • Purpose: Increases blood flow, enhances flexibility and range of motion.

  • B. Foam Rolling

  • Exercise: Roll major muscle groups to release tension.

  • Purpose: Aids recovery, improves mobility, and reduces muscle soreness.

4. Speed & Agility

  • A. Sprint Intervals

  • Exercise: Short bursts of maximum-effort sprints with rest intervals.

  • Purpose: Enhances speed, metabolic conditioning, and endurance.

  • B. Agility Ladder Drills

  • Exercise: Quick, complex footwork patterns through a ladder setup on the ground.

  • Purpose: Boosts agility, speed, and coordination.

5. Power & Strength

  • A. Push-Ups

  • Exercise: Full range of motion push-ups focusing on form.

  • Purpose: Builds upper body strength, core stability.

  • B. Squats

  • Exercise: Full, deep squats with proper alignment and technique.

  • Purpose: Strengthens legs, hips, and core, and enhances mobility.

6. Sports-Specific Skills (Tailor According to the Sport)

  • A. Dribbling (for ball sports)

  • Exercise: Dribble a ball around obstacles, focusing on control and speed.

  • Purpose: Enhances hand-eye coordination, control, and speed.

  • B. Striking (for racquet sports, baseball, etc.)

  • Exercise: Practice striking with precision and control.

  • Purpose: Enhances timing, coordination, and power.

7. Recovery & Mental Well-being

  • A. Guided Relaxation

  • Exercise: Lie down, focus on relaxing each part of the body progressively.

  • Purpose: Aids recovery, reduces stress, and improves focus.

  • B. Visualization Techniques

  • Exercise: Visualize successful performance in sports events.

  • Purpose: Enhances mental preparation, focus, and confidence.

Each exercise should be performed with a focus on proper form and technique to ensure safety and effectiveness. Tailor repetitions and sets according to the athlete's capability, progressively increasing intensity as strength and endurance build. Include a mix of these exercises in regular training to develop a well-rounded, highly capable young athlete.

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