Sunday, November 6, 2016

Upper Body Plyometrics for College Throwers

We have already addressed lower body plyometric drills in the third blog.  Today, we are going to focus on upper body plyometric drills for track and field throwers. Stretch-shortening cycle (SSC) is the exercises that plyometric drills take advantage of. Warpeha states, “When a muscle is stretched very rapidly in an eccentric fashion immediately prior to a concentric shortening (rebound), stored elastic energy and neural mechanisms cause the resultant concentric contraction to be more forceful than if the rapid stretching of the muscle did not occur.” Plyometrics are used to increase power and explosiveness.  Below are 3 types of upper body plyometric exercises that track and field throwers can add to their workouts to further improve performance.
Medicine Ball Throws:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=p7njQa7-WLI

This exercise is done with two partners standing 5-10 feet apart.  The ball is then thrown horizontally to your partner back and forth.  Gravity is pulling the ball down towards the ground so an alternative to getting more from the workout is to lay on a bench and throw the ball straight up in the air.  Following the throw, the athlete  catch the ball and repeat..  It is important to have a heavy enough medicine ball to get a good workout in during this exercise.  Most throwers medicine balls weight between 40-60 pounds, but this varies based on the  athlete.2

http://workoutlabs.com/exercise-guide/medicine-ball-slams/
Medicine Ball Slams:
The athlete raises the ball over their head and slams the medicine ball forcefully to the ground.1




Band Push-Ups:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1-Zn5g7r-50
Band push-ups are a modification of the clap push up. Band push-ups can benefit the athlete if they are not powerful and explosive enough to complete a clap push-up. Elastic bands, and a stool/bench are needed to complete the exercise. The picture below demonstrate the setup.2

The athletes can benefit from doing these drills for 3 sets and 3-5 reps. If 100 percent effort is being exerted the athlete should not surpass these reps.


References:
1Mark Nutting, M. Practical Progressions for Upper Body Plyometric Training. NSCA’s Performance Training Journal,3(2),14-19.
2Warpeha, J. M. Upper Body Plyometrics. NSCA’s Performance Training Journal, 6(5), 6-8. Retrieved from http://myweb.wwu.edu/~chalmers/PDFs/Upper%20body%20plyometrics.pdf


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