The jump rope is probably the most underrated training tool out there. It’s easily one of the best ways to work on your coordination, footwork, and endurance at the same time. A jump rope can be used to warm up, in between drills, or even as a cool down after a workout. There are a bunch of fancy ones out there, but any rope will do as long as it fits your height.
The amount of exercises you can do with resistance bands are countless. They’re portable, light, and easy to incorporate into upper and lower body movements. Getting a good set that has different levels of resistance will also get you stronger once the other levels get easier. You can also stack multiple colors to get even more resistance.
Hurdles are not just for track runners, they are actually a great tool for working on lower body explosiveness. Jumping over hurdles works on every muscle in your lower body, and challenging yourself with greater heights forces you to transfer maximum power from your feet through your ankles, knees, and hips.
High hurdles work on explosiveness, but low hurdles focus more on reaction time. A low hurdle is high enough (4-10 inches) that you have to jump to get over it, but low enough to force you to quickly reset for the next jump or movement, depending on which drill you’re doing. High and low hurdles can be used together for an effective explosive and reaction time workout.
Some of you may have seen this one in pet stores, but it works just as well on humans. A reaction ball has lumps on it causing it to bounce it different directions once it hits a the ground or a wall. Using one of these helps with hand-eye coordination as well as reaction time since you have to react as fast as possible to get your body in front of the ball to make a catch.
A speed band allows you to run with added resistance, forcing you to push harder with each stride, similar to pushing a sled. You can hook it up to a sturdy fence or pole, and use your cones to set markers to sprint to and jog back. You can also shuffle, backpedal, and even combine the two.
There will always be new tools and toys out there, but these are the best we’ve come across that have been around for a long time and will continue being used for years. If you pick up all or any of the items on this list, they will definitely last you until you either break them or stop training completely.
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