Sports Specific Exercise

In the lives of most adults, exercise is used to increase their overall health levels and decrease the risks associated with developing disease. This is a great reason to exercise, but what if a few small changes could make you better at the recreational activities that you participate in daily? These recreational activities include playing basketball, volleyball, cycling, softball, golf, or basically any activity that people do for fun. Small modifications in your everyday workout routine could help make you better at the sports you are participating in. The reasons that such small changes can bring significant results is that with using this method, you are basically “tricking” your body into performing sports specific movements. Below are a few examples of ways to modify exercise movements for certain sports.

Because basketball is such a great form of cardiovascular exercise, we will begin here. Here are a few examples of modifications that could be made:

Regular exercise: Lunges
Modified exercise: “Hand-grip” Lunges

In this exercise the individual would use either a 10 lb plate or a pair of small medicine balls to increase grip strength throughout their exercise movement. This type of thinking can be applied in many ways, for multiple different sports and exercising!

Regular exercise: Body weight squats
Modified exercise: Plate squats (done holding plate out in front of you throughout the “squatting” motion)

Another example would be used for golfers and baseball players alike. This example includes performing exercises that mimic the “swinging” motion. By implementing exercise techniques that strengthen the muscles used throughout this sports specific movement, an individuals swing speed can be increased. So the next time you exercise, think about what type of movements are involved in the recreational activities that you enjoy. By mimicking these movements with resistance (usually low to provide the safest outcome) one can modify an exercise regimen to specifically make them stronger at the activities that they do for pure enjoyment! Get out there and try something new!

Malaki Bolton
Blog Bros
The University of Central Oklahoma