Agility Ladder Exercises & Drills
Start: Stand facing the ladder at either end.
Action: Place the lead foot in the first square of the agility ladder with the opposite arm forward, mimicking the running position. Both arms are bent at about a 90 degree angle. Next, place the trail foot in the second square and bring the opposite arm forward. Continue down the entire length of the ladder, alternating each foot hitting every other square.
Focus points: Starting out, focus on technique and form; once mastered, speed up the drill and move through the ladder as quickly as possible. Stay on the balls of the feet and focus on the arm action.
Variation (Two feet each square)
Starting position: Stand facing the ladder at either end.
Start: Stand to one side of the agility ladder, with the hips and shoulders perpendicular to the ladder. Get in an athletic position. The lead foot will be the one closest to the ladder.
Action: Place the lead foot inside the first square. Next bring the trail foot into the first square, while at the same time laterally moving the lead foot to the outside of the first square. Take the trail foot that is in the first square and move it forward to the second square. Bring the outside (lead) foot into the second square, while moving the inside (trail) foot to the starting side of the ladder. Continue to shuffle laterally through each square of the agility ladder.
Focus points: Stay low by bending your knees and keeping your hips low. Move quickly, staying on the balls of the feet.
Variation - Add a Medicine Ball
Start: Hold the Power Med-Ball™ with both hands at chest level, with the arms bent.
Start: Stand at the top of the ladder, facing to the side. Get in an athletic position. The lead foot is the one closest to the ladder.
Action: Place the lead foot in the second square and the trail foot at the end of the ladder. Begin by stepping with the lead foot into the third square (now there are two squares between the feet) and then bring the trail foot into the first square (leaving one square between the feet). There will be one square between each foot. Continue the drill by moving the lead foot first followed by the trail foot, always keeping one square between the feet. Repeat the drill with the opposite foot leading.
Focus points: This drill should be done slowly, focusing on form and technique, keeping the hips low in an athletic position throughout the entire drill.
Variation (advanced) - Add a Lateral Stepper
Start: Stand facing the agility ladder at either end.
Action: Jump both feet into the first square, at the same time. Next, jump forward and straddle the second square, so that each foot is on the outside of the square. Then jump both feet to the inside of the second square. Next, jump and straddle the third square, and then jump both feet into the center of the third square. Continue the entire length of the ladder.
Action: Stand to one side, facing the ladder. Hold the Power Med-Ball with both hands extended in front of the body. The lead foot is the foot farthest from the beginning of the ladder. Jump and twist the hips a quarter turn, 90 degrees, into the ladder, placing the lead foot in the first square and keeping the trail foot outside the ladder. Next, jump and twist the hips 90 degrees the other direction, placing the trail foot into the first square, keeping the lead foot outside the ladder. Now, jump and twist the hips 90 degrees and place the lead foot into the second square of the ladder. Continue this pattern the entire length of the ladder.
Focal Points: Keep the Power Med-Ball straight out in front of the body and the shoulders perpendicular to the agility ladder the entire time, alternating each foot to land in the center of each square. For less intensity, perform drill without the Med-Ball.
Exercises design by: Robert Lindsey, CSCS USAW and Mitzi Hall, MS CSCS