Plyometrics Drills

        I use the following drills with all my athletes during the indoor and outdoor throwing seasons. I have the athletes perform the drills in groups; Freshman and new throwers, and Varsity. I split the groups up in half hour time slots. For example, the freshman & new throwers will work together from 4:00 - 4:30; varsity from 4:30 - 5:00. This usually runs efficiently enough so the groups waiting can get in a good lifting session. All drills are performed quickly, but under control. The goal of a plyometrics routine is to spend the least amount of time with the feet on the ground.  

        Keep the following principles in mind:

  1. Keep foot contact time on the ground to a minimium
  2. Move from eccentric (jumping down) to concentric (jumping up) movements
  3. Develop a very good strength base before starting the program
  4. Always maintain proper movement techniques
  5. Use only controllable heights (cones, boxes, etc.)
  6. Train first in straight ahead drills, then lateral, then backwards
  7. Learn movements first, then add the speed component

        Listed below are the exercises we do in that half hour. If you need a more detailed description of an exercise, please feel free to email me with your questions. Improvise when necessary…if you don't have boxes, steps may work for some of these drills. Hopefully I will have a scanner soon so I can upload pictures to match each exercise. Feel free to print out this list!


    1.    Line Drills

    The athletes use a line on the ground about 10 feet long. Each begins on one side of the line with both feet on the floor. Keeping both feet together, the athlete jumps over the line to the other side remaining on the toes at all times. The athlete repeats the steps moving a few feet up the line. After several feet, the athlete turns in the air so he is facing the side. The athlete now hops over the line from front to back, not side to side. After a few feet, he returns to the original position to finish up the line drill. Repeat twice.

  1. Hexagons

A hexagon is made on the floor with athletic tape with approximate side measuring 2 feet long. The athlete starts in the center and must jump outside the hexagon and return to the middle on each side. Move around the entire hexagon. Remain on the toes at all times. Repeat twice.

  1. Single Leg hops

The athlete stands in front of five small cones (6 inches high). He will hop over the cones on one leg balancing his weight on the leg by sitting and concentrating on the single leg. Return back on the other leg. Repeat three times.

Cone Routines

  1. Football shuffle

The athlete stands to the side of a line of 8 – 10 medium sized cones (not facing the cones). He will shuffle over the cones from the side keeping the knees high and remaining on his toes. Return through the ones facing the other way. Repeat twice.

      5  4 - Corner Drill

Four cones are set up approximately 20 feet apart to form a square. The athletes line up a one corner. The athlete will perform four different agility exercises as he moves around the cones forming a square. First, the athletes sprint forward to the next cone. Next, the athletes perform a football shuffle to the next corner, keeping the butt down and remaining on the toes. Next, the athletes will back-pedal to the third corner, keeping the butt down and remaining on the toes. Finally, the athletes will Carioca to the final corner, keeping the butt down and remaining on the toes. Repeat 3 or 4 times. Good as a final drill.

        6. Ice Skater

Three cones are lined up about four feet apart. The athlete stands to the side of one of the outside cones (not the middle cone). The athlete jumps over the cone from the side (not facing the cone) with both feet landing before the middle cone. He will then jump over the middle cone with both feet landing on the ground. He will then jump over the third cone landing on the outside foot only and immediately push off the ground over the third cone. He will repeat the middle steps and jump over the first cone landing on only the outside foot. Each athlete will move through the drill twice in quick succession. The drill is repeated 2 –3 times.


(Athlete facing wall)   CONEwpe5.gif (955 bytes) two feet CONE   wpe6.gif (955 bytes)two feet    CONE    outside foot (and return immediately back to the beginning in the same manner)


Box Drills

  1. Irish Dancing

Four athletes stand at each side of a small box (8 1-12 inches high). Each athlete places his right foot on the top of the box directly in front of him. When they are ready, blow a whistle. The athletes must now simulate running in place, but must keep switching the leg on top of the box. The arms should move as if he was running. Have the athletes keep the knees high in order to get the foot on the box each time. Athletes count ten times on the box with one leg. Repeat 2 – 3 times. It will take time to develop coordination in the younger throwers for this drill. They must simulate running with the knees high. Make sure they only tap on top of the box; they should not get onto the box. One foot up, one foot down.

  1. Depth Jumps - Advanced

An athlete starts on top of a small box (same size as in the above drill). A cone is placed at the base of the box about 2 feet from the box. The athlete jumps down from the box and lands between the box and cone on both feet. Without pausing, the athlete jumps over the cone with both feet together. And lands. Without pausing, the athlete then jumps out into a standing broad jump. The athletes are looking to land in a squat position three times; off the box, over the cone, and at the end of the broad jump. Drill is repeated 4 times. Athletes are not to do this drill until they can full squat one and half times their body weight.

  1. Double leg bounding

5 - 8 medium size cones are lined up in a row with several small and large (36 + inches high) boxes after them. Athletes line up in front of the cones and jump over all the cones and onto each box keeping both feet together and staying on the toes. Spend the least amount of time on the ground. Repeat 4 times.

  1. Power Ups - Advanced

Definitely a crowd favorite! An athlete places one foot on the small or medium box from the side (the outside part of the leg on the ground should be against the box). In one fluid motion, the athlete pushes himself up onto the box and jumps up directly over the box in the air off of one leg and lands on the leg on the box. The outside leg that is resting on the ground must stabilize the athlete as he lands. Athletes must stay under control or he will get hurt. The goal of this exercise is to concentrate on pushing upward off the leg that is on top of the box.