At EXOS, we assess speed qualities by looking at all aspects of football. For example, position, decision-making, right or left side dominance for change of direction, and each phase of sprinting. Based on the assessment, we train qualities for both linear and multidirectional speed to improve the speed profile of our athletes. These qualities are broken down into seven categories: acceleration, absolute speed, shuffle, cutting, crossover, backpedal, and deceleration. All of those qualities are trained in reactive situations, meaning the movements require decision-making like they do on the field of play, and nonreactive situations, meaning the athlete knows the exact plan of the movement or drill. Below we explain each quality and share sample drills.
This is the initial burst of speed needed to create separation or to close in on an opponent. Acceleration Wall Drill – Triples are a sample movement to use to train acceleration.
This quality is trained to maintain efficiency at top-end speed. Add SpeedSac Buildups to your routine to improve absolute speed.
The shuffle is commonly used to move from side to side. Try this Mirror Drill.
Cutting is the component to change of direction that involves deceleration and acceleration. Practice with this Reactive Speed Cut Drill.
The crossover is a movement that links a side-to-side movement like shuffling to a straight sprint. The Crossover Drill – Quick and Stabilize helps strengthen this movement.
The backpedal is an efficient movement at retreating on the defensive side of the ball and commonly links multidirectional speed to linear speed. Add the Backpedal to 45 Degree Acceleration to your routine.
A crucial piece to expressing speed is the ability to start and ultimately stop and redirect that speed again.
Jamie Lynn Davis View all posts by Jamie Lynn Davis