I’m lucky enough to work with some of the top guys in the NFL, and our current focus is using these specific football drills for agility, to move with more speed and power.
Why Should Athletes Train For Agility?
The goal of this program is to make you a faster, more powerful, and energy efficient athlete. The drills I’m sharing below are some of favorites for football players to focus on because of their “turn and sprint” nature.
No matter what point you’re at in your football career, speed is the name of the game.
This is one of the most effective football workouts since so much of the sport is a quick chase towards the touchdown zone. Your job is to quickly scan the field, and get into the right position within seconds.
These football drills are best saved for a thorough warmup or a workout entirely focused on agility or lower body power.
Best Football Drills for Agility
*The majority of these drills are taken from a page in my top-selling agility program: Game Speed Agility.
1. (Mini) lateral hurdle hops + SL lateral hurdle hops
If there’s one thing you guys need to know about us over at OTA –
We love our progressions.
Your best bet would be to start off your lateral hurdle hops using both feet, and once you feel more stable you can progress the movement to only one leg at a time.
(Here’s a few of my favorite single leg, football drills for agility).
HOW TO: Set up a mini hurdle so that it’s lateral to you. Standing next to the hurdle, hop up and off both feet to travel laterally up and over.
As soon as your feet touch down, you should think about getting directly back into the next rep. Think about speed and reactivity.
Once you’re comfortable here, you can complete a few sets on only one foot.
Complete 2 sets of 10 (fast) reps.
2. (Tall) Lateral double hurdle hop
This is a similar movement to the first drill, only with more intensity since the actual barrier is much higher.
After warming up over the mini hurdles, these are a great way to start elevating your skills.
HOW TO: Just like the first football drill for agility, begin standing next to the hurdle.
Be sure to use your arms for momentum as you jump up off the floor. Go for enough height to clear the barrier, and over to land on the other side.
Again, focus on reactivity so that every time you land you pop directly back up for the next rep.
You can also complete 2 sets of 10 reps.
3. Flipped lateral hurdle hops
These are one of my favorite to develop that quick change of direction.
Training for lower body agility helps to contribute to your overall game speed and teaches you to quickly flip the hips.
HOW TO: You’ll once again begin standing next to a tall hurdle, hopping over the barrier laterally. This time as soon as you touch down, flip the hips so that you’re facing the opposite direction and then laterally hop over the second hurdle.
Essentially, you should be clearing each hurdle like before, with a quick flip of direction between the jumps.
Complete 2 sets of 4 hops in each direction.
4. Lateral hurdle shuffles
This is another great drill that teaches you football-specific-agility and quick feet.
Lateral shuffles teach you to keep your torso facing one direction while simultaneously moving the lower body laterally.
HOW TO: Set up two mini hurdles in sequence about a foot apart. Starting with the hurdles to your side, individually pick your feet up to – step over, between and over again (in that order) to clear the hurdles.
You should move your feet as quickly as possible over the hurdles.
These are always a go to warm-up for lower body power and plyometrics.
Work through up to 5 sets of 1 set over the hurdles.
5. Lateral hurdle shuffle to turn and 5yd sprint
This is a progression from the last drill where your lateral shuffle ends in a turn and sprint.
This is far more accurate to competition when looking at football drills for agility.
HOW TO: Start the same way as the last drill. Set up both mini hurdles to travel laterally, before you turn and sprint forward 5yds.
I love to add in speed work with these agility drills since they help reinforce acceleration mechanics.
Similarly, you can utilize various football drills with a ladder in order to enhance your conditioning.
Develop SPEED and AGILITY
One of the best ways you can start enhancing your football agility skills this season, is to use various drills during your lower body workouts.
Over time as your training progresses, I typically have my guys start on workouts entirely dedicated to speed and power.
If you want to nail your skills during a game, you need to be using them during all of your gym sessions.
That’s why I suggest investing in yourself with a strategic agility program: Game Speed Agility.
I’ve boiled agility training down to three simple steps:
- Force Management
- Cognitive Conditioning
These areas of focus make it simpler for you to build a strong foundation by relying on technique, proper movement, and power.
In fact, this is how a lot of the elites move off the field to play at their best.
If you’re interested in making quick jukes and accurate passes, this is the program for you.