Indoor Track Practice

This morning as I drove to practice I was mentally prepping for all the jumping we were going to do at practice on this Saturday morning. I knew that the mild wind, and slight amounts of cold were going to have an effect on the quality of jumps, but was just happy there was not the 5, or 8, or 12 inches of snow that had been forecast for the last 3 days. I had designs for warm-ups and progressions we would take in the jumps--it was going to be magical....but then I pulled into the parking lot.

Apparently, as Coach Hawk and Coach Neale can also attest to, those living north and west of the I-25 & Lincoln intersection were spared the storm that those living in Parker received. The storm in Parker was still much less than had been predicted, but nevertheless the track was covered in a snowy-ice, the wind was significantly stronger (as it always is in Parker), and the temperature was a few degrees cooler.

We realized we were relegated to being indoors. This led to a discussion between the coaches of the need for a book that has indoor track workouts, from which we needed only one workout. We put our heads together, and Neale headed to the Internet, and we came up with the following indoor workout that was challenging, fun, and effective. I post this not only to document an epic Chap track workout, but also in the hope that some athlete or coach will someday be searching for "Indoor Track Workouts" and will stumble on this workout. We all benefit: they get workout ideas, and my blog moves up in the Google hits algorithm (I'm big on this, send your friends to check out the blog so when I tell people to search for "Nack for Track" they actually find it).

-A decent sized space (we used bball court, adjust as necessary)
-Jump ropes
-Strength Bands
-Medicine Balls

-Each Athlete has a jump rope well sized
-There are medicine balls for at least half of the athletes

Jump Rope Complex Round 1
  1. On the first whistle athletes begin jumping rope moving in any manner they wish, but they have to be moving forwards, backwards, or laterally (30 secs)
  2. On the second whistle athletes keep jump roping, but this time in place (30 secs)
  3. On the third whistle athletes drop their jump ropes and begin to run in any direction, and jump over any jump rope length-wise(30 secs) [This is kind of goofy, but the I think they secretly enjoyed it]
  4. Return to step 1 and repeat steps 1, 2, and 3
  5. After the helter skelter jump rope jumping, have the kids line up on the baseline of the bball court and have them run a "suicide" (baseline to the free throw, half court, opposite free throw, and oppostiste baseline and back). This should be the most significant effort they have given. (We were surprised at the amount of heavy breathing we heard, especially because it sounded like they were still having fun despite the effort.)
  6. 4 minutes rest
Jump Rope Complex Round 2
  1. On the first whistle athletes begin jumping rope moving in any manner they wish, but they have to be moving forwards, backwards, or laterally (30 secs)
  2. On the second whistle athletes keep jump roping, but this time in place (30 secs)
  3. On the third whistle athletes drop their jump ropes and find a medicine ball appropriate for them (6-12lbs), and do underhanded straight over head toss, catching it after the first bounce. Emphasize not using the arms, but sinking the hips and exploding them upwards. Make sure the kids are well spread out. Some kids selected med balls that might have been too heavy, so we had them toss one ball back and forth to give them a little extra recovery time. (30-60secs)
  4. Return to step 1 and repeat steps 1, and 2.
  5. Athletes once again drop their jump ropes and seek out a medicine ball. This time they will squat, explode up and forward, chest pass the ball as far as possible, chase the ball down after the 1st bounce, turn back in the direction they came, and then repeat. The athlete is basically playing catch with themself. When done correctly, this one is very difficult. (30 secs)
  6. "Suicide" run
  7. 4 min rest
Jump Rope Complex Round 3
  1. The first two steps from previous rounds remain the same: Jump rope roving to jump rope in place. (30 sec each)
  2. Athletes drop the jump rope and do push-ups. Modifications include push-ups from the knee, or a push-up plank hold (>=30secs)
  3. Repeat step 1
  4. Athletes drop the jump rope and do sit-ups (30 secs)
  5. Repeat step 1 again
  6. Athletes drop the jump rope and do burpees (<=30secs)
  7. "Suicide" run
  8. >4min rest
Strength Band Complex
  1. We partnered the athletes up and gave each partnership a strength band
  2. One partner chose to go first
  3. Athletes doubled the strength band to shorten them and slipped them on just above their knees and did ten lateral steps with each leg. Like those seen here (except we had the bands double looped and up around the knee):
  4. Athletes then took the band off, unlooped it, and stood on the band, and then proceeded to press it overhead. They did these shoulder presses 10 times. They sort of look like what Mr. Burnfatathome is doing below at the 30sec mark.
  5. Athletes then put the bands across the back of their neck and shoulders while still standing on it, and then did 10 squats. Like so (without the music...or the handles--our method=more painful, but more effective)
  6. The Athletes then lowered band back down in front of them and did 10 speed bicep curls (I recommend more)
  7. The athletes then returned to where their partner was waiting and handed one end to the partner, and then got inside the band. The athletes then did 10 forward jumps, with the partner holding the band for resistance. The athletes' focus was on driving forward but landing balanced so the resistance band did not shoot them back. The partner holding the band must be instructed to not let go for any reason. I am sure you can imagine why.
  8. Switch partners
  9. Repeat if necessary
That was pretty much the workout. For my high jumpers I added in some three-point arch runs to substitute circle runs, and then they joined everyone in the weightroom for a solid squat and deadlift workout.

Though, I think the kids would not to see this workout come around anytime soon, I do believe they enjoyed it, and it was indeed difficult. I hopped in for a moment to give it a try, and was fairly well spent. For our kids and the condition they are in this workout was perfect; not so hard it would effect their performances in a meet two days from now, but just hard enough to shake out the cobwebs of this mangled and disjointed spring break practice week.