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6 Exercises to Improve Agility

Whether you are a stay-at-home mom, weekend warrior or grandfather-in-training, agility training should be an important part of your workout routine. Agility is the ability to move quickly and change direction with ease. This describes both physical and mental agility. As we age, or just become complacent in our daily routines, both our mental and physical agility suffers. Here are six exercises that you can do to be quick on your toes and sharp as a tack.

Ladder Drills

Ladder Drill

Using an agility ladder, select a method of moving through the ladder. For example, you might start with a high-knee march forward through each box, and then progress to a lateral scissor if you’re more advanced. To target your upper body, move through the ladder with your hands while maintaining a push-up position. Once you have this move mastered, speed it up and recite the words to your favorite song, the alphabet or the pledge of allegiance as you move through the ladder. It might seem simple, but this move will get your heart rate up and your brain working.

Hurdle Drills

Hurdle Drill

Using either 6- or 12-inch hurdles (these can be cones, yoga blocks or whatever you have on hand), set five to 10 hurdles up in a row, parallel to each other. Moving laterally, start by going over the first hurdle with a high step and pausing in a stork stance before moving back to the starting position. Then move over the first two hurdles, pause and go back to the start. Continue this until all five to 10 hurdles have been traveled (1, 1 2, 1 2 3, 1 2 3 4, etc.). Count your hurdles out loud (both ascending and descending numbers) and remember to pause on one leg before moving back to the beginning. Also, don’t forget to switch directions. When you become more advanced, speed up the hurdle steps and take out the pause.

Agility Balls

Agility Ball

Using small agility balls, bounce them either to a partner or against a wall if you’re working out solo. Because the agility ball shape will send the bounce in varying directions, use a safe space where you won’t run into anything or anyone. Practice catching the ball with two hands, then with your dominant hand only, and lastly, progress to catching it with your non-dominant hand. Hand-eye coordination activities help increase mental stimulation and chasing this tiny tool around is great for the heart and legs. I dare you to not smile while doing this one!

Balloon Drills

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Fitnovatives Blog — Courtesy “American Council On Exercise” (ACEfitness.org) <p>

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