Lacrosse is a game of speed. LAX players thrive on speed, and the ability to shift gears and change directions. The faster they are, the more potential there is for success. Simple footwork drills that challenge the communication between an athletes’ nervous system and muscular system will help maximize their ability to generate speed. Basically, “what wires together, fires together.” By creating efficient pathways within the neuromuscular system and activating fast twitch muscle fibres, we not only create athleticism but also reinforce gait patterning through high speed repetition.
Lacrosse is a game of changing directions. Athletes must be able to do so as safely, quickly and efficiently as possible. Changing directions fast is less about speeding up in the new direction, and more about the ability to decelerate efficiently before they go again. This ability to shift gears quickly can often be the biggest factor in offensive and defensive success or failure. It is also an often neglected training opportunity where athletes can gain the most acceleration benefit and the ability to prevent a variety of deceleration injuries that generally happen during these direction changes (ankle sprains, ACL etc.).
Deceleration training is about teaching the athlete how to stop. An athlete who can create stability through the ankle, knee, and hip joints while absorbing forces in the sequential loading pattern of triple flexion will ultimately be able to generate more force in the opposing direction through sequential triple extension which is applied as SPEED!
Lacrosse is a sprint/rest/sprint sport, not a distance sport, moderate range sprints (40-80 yards) with relatively low rest intervals (1:3 work:rest ratio) will still develop the aerobic system with the additional benefit of improving sprint speed.
It is easier for athletes to maintain good running form sprinting short distances than running longer distances. Hate to see a player get injured or pick up a nagging pain running cross-country or something in the off-season.
At XCEL players will basically never need to sprint more than 50 or 60 yards in a straight line. Consecutive 5, 10 and 15 yard bursts and cuts that change direction are most common. This workout program doesn’t seem to include any of those. These runs resemble the sport and will prepare the player to be ready to play at a high level.
As an athlete, your job is to work hard.
XCEL’S job is to provide the path to your potential.