march madness: workout tips from NCAA basketball teams
With February coming to a close, there’s something magical on the horizon, something sports fans and college students have been waiting for all year–March Madness. I am one of those people who pretty much only loves sports when the games really mean something, when there’s a lot on the line for these athletes. The Stanley Cup, the Superbowl, the World Series, you name it. Throw in amateur college athletes and I’m filling out a bracket as fast as you can say Tar Heels. Will I win the pool? Absolutely not, but I’ll most likely be glued to the television watching it all unfold.
Now I know you all want details on how these agile athletes get in tip-top shape for such an important month. Well, wonder no longer, I’ve found an article revealing workout secrets from the best college basketball teams! Men’s Health Magazine interviewed top strength and conditioning coaches in the NCAA to find out what exactly goes on behind basketball court doors.
- University of North Carolina’s coach, Jonas Sahratian, C.S.C.S., straps a harness on his athletes and has them perform resisted sprints. This harness, when held back by another athlete, helps build the quick pickup on the court. Want to recreate this at home? Try strapping a sled or wagon to a backpack and pull your kids around!
- A long physique with the flexibility to stretch out limbs to their max is important for basketball and Charlie Melton, C.S.C.S., of Baylor University makes sure his team is as limber as can be. To increase athletes’ range of motion, Melton has the team perform spiderman crawls to pump up that flexibility. Start out in a push-up position. Bring your right foot up and place it on the outside of your right hand. Hold for a couple seconds, and then lower your torso towards the ground for a deeper stretch. Walk your hands out forward until you’re back in a pushup position, then repeat with left leg. Men’s Health recommends 8 to 10 reps on each side.
- At Vanderbilt University, coach Curtis Turner, C.S.C.S. has his athletes break out of the gym and go all around campus. He takes a map of the campus and highlights locations where certain drills are located, such as push-ups and squats. Do like the Commodores do and make your own map at home! Use either a park, your neighborhood, or the city you’re traveling in for business and perform exercises at the locations of your choice.
Check out the article for the rest of the coaches’ advice!
photo credit: Luis Blanco Press Photographer | Flickr