Deceleration Step Ups


Decel step ups are a common lower body exercise I’ll use with athletes during our accessory work. This drill works the muscles of the posterior leg including the hamstrings, inner thigh and especially gluteus medius and maximus. The deceleration step ups position your hip at 90 degrees, and then require you to extend at the hip and fully stand. This is the same position you’d be at during a box jump or vertical jump.

That’s why I would suggest any athlete no matter their sport use decel step ups to build strength through the hips and legs, and power in your jumping, bounding, and sprinting.

How to perform decel step ups?

Make sure you’re fully warmed up before starting any lower body workout. I have my athletes begin every workout with this full dynamic warm-up.

To perform decel step ups, grab a bench or equally sized plyo box. Begin by planting one foot on the bench with the opposite foot off to the side remaining level through the hips. Next, start to shift your weight into the foot standing on the bench or box. From here you’ll begin to push your hips back and simultaneously bend the knee of that standing leg. Sink down until you reach full squat depth and the heel of your floating leg taps the floor.

From the bottom of your step up, drive through the heel of your standing. You can simultaneously move both arms in front of you to as a counterbalance.

You can watch how to perform decel step ups HERE.


It’s easy to perform this movement with the wrong technique, so I recommend starting with a lower box to establish your balance and get a better idea of the movement. A couple drills a week will only get you so far.

You need a full system if you really want to get faster.

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