Matt Rinehart is the Head of Strength & Conditioning at Laurus Athletic Rehab & Performance in Roseville, MN. Matt graduated from University of Northwestern (IA) with a degree in Exercise Science and went on to receive his Master's in Exercise & Sport Science from Merrimack. Matt has also worked at the the University of Minnesota and Denver University.
During this unprecedented time we all find ourselves in, a common concern shared amongst athletes of all ages and skill levels is “how fast will I lose my (strength, power, speed, bounce, skills, etc.).” While this is a legitimate concern, as a few weeks or months spent away from your training routine and likely all the equipment and facilities you previously had access to is certainly a threat to the hard work you’ve put in and the improvements you have made, this period or time does not mean we are all helpless until we can return to the court or training facility. As a Strength and Conditioning / Athletic Development coach, my focus and expertise lies in the realm of helping athletes prevent injuries, while also improving their athletic capabilities and ultimately their performance. While finding ways to do this with no equipment and minimal space in the confines of our homes certainly presents its challenges, it is not impossible. In fact, I believe we as coaches should always be seeking to empower athletes to be self-sufficient and give them the tools to take their training and athletic development into their own hands. And what better time for this than now.
Outlined below is a very simple at home workout that can be completed anywhere, anytime, with no equipment, all in less than 10 minutes. The purpose of these specific exercises is to provide an explosive, power-based stimulus, as an athlete’s power and speed is one of the first adaptations to decline during their time away from training.
Exercise 1) ISO Split Squat To perform the ISO Split Squat, start in a split squat position with your back knee on the ground. It is important to have the majority of your weight on your front leg, making it so that your front knee travels forward out over your foot. Once you have found this stance, begin by raising your back knee off the ground no more than a few inches. Again, the majority of your weight should be on the front leg. Holding this position for :20 seconds per side, and increase this time up to :30 seconds per side as you are able.
Exercise 2) Split Squat Jumps After performing one rep each side of the ISO Split Squat, immediately perform 3 Split Squat Jumps each side. Jump as high and explosively as possible, while switching your legs in the air. Alternate between these two exercises for 4 sets, taking a 1-2 minute rest following each set. The focus should be on explosiveness and maximal intent, leaving you feeling “revved up” and ready to go, not exhausted or fatigued. In fact, this workout can be performed prior to your ball handling or skill workout!
*Bonus: Have you ever had that pesky pain in the front of your knee, especially after running or jumping a lot? This is an extremely common overuse injury known as Patellar Tendinopathy (Jumper’s Knee). If you are someone who struggles with this, try performing these ISO Split Squat’s 2-3 times per day!