When I first saw a fitness ladder I was skeptical of how a black and yellow obstacle that you place on the ground? How is a fitness ladder going to help me lose weight and become mentally sharper?
The Fitness ladder embodies how the mind and muscle connection works and how moving through this fitness ladder like a game of hopscotch is the perfect at-home workout to do every day to improve your agility, speed, and explosiveness.
The first thing that comes to mind when trying to lose weight is “I need to start running more”. Maybe a treadmill is not in the budget. What if you live in the city and don’t like running in public or beside cars on the road. Or with today’s circumstances when all gyms are shut down due to the global pandemic.
The fitness ladder is inexpensive and very functional, you can train from the comfort of your living room or backyard if you wish. I can guarantee that it will be the cheapest and most effective piece of exercise equipment that you buy this year.
It’s worthwhile to mix your cardio methods up. I like to start my Monday off with a run. In the middle of the week, I will bike. End of the week I will use the rowing machine.
The cold hard facts are that none of these exercises focus on lateral movements that strengthen joints, ligaments, and tendons. Also, the monotony of doing the same exercises all the time can drive a person new to exercising insane.
Let’s say if you’re a pro, you do not have to worry about the agility ladder getting too easy for you. There are hundreds of advanced variations and multiple exercises will keep you challenged for an eternity. After a year of constant practice, you will be able to tiptoe through the squares like a seasoned athlete. Ask any coach or trainer great footwork is essential in almost every popular sport today.
How The Agility Ladder Improved My Basketball Skills
Here is a story that shows the agility ladder is a proven method to reach new heights in your workouts. Last year I had a bet with some of my basketball playing buddies that I could dunk a basketball. Being in my 30’s and not in my best shape I had 6 months to achieve this notable accomplishment. One benefit I had was that I was naturally tall and athletic but my coordination was horrible and I was in constant dread that I would never be able to touch the rim. I was really optimistic after making the bet but I realized after my first month of practicing that I was not even close. I couldn’t generate enough velocity and explosiveness on my vertical jump.
I then needed help, I reached out to one of the trainers at my gym and asked him which muscles should I strengthen so I can get above the rim?
He then told me to meet him next week and he prepared a special training session for me. During this training session, he brought in the black and neon yellow step ladder. We did a bunch of basic drills using the ladder. The last drill he had a jumping box placed right after the ladder he told me to go through the footwork progression then jump onto the box immediately after. This developed my footwork and I realized that one of the main things that I needed was strong footwork to help me dunk. It was almost like a switch went off in my mind causing me to not even think and just perform the explosive movement after so much practice.
Fitness Ladders Develop Coordination
Many people think that they are born with bad coordination and they are naturally awkward and clumsy. By stepping through the ladder at max speed will cause them to trip over themselves or worse.
The truth is that coordination is a learnable skill. Just like the first day that you step into a gym you do not gain a muscle every time you lift a weight. The benefits of improving coordination stretch far beyond physicality. Coordination is the ability to use different parts and muscles of your body all together smoothly and the most efficiently. When developing this mind and muscle exercise you use the part of your brain called the cerebellum which is linked to the ability to think and also how fast you can process information.
Once using a step ladder in your weekly routine it will drastically help your coordination in many sports and activities like dancing, tennis, basketball, and boxing to name a few. Eventually, as you become more advanced at the agility ladder and the sequences they will gradually become easier and you will seek more complex foot sequences so your workouts become more challenging. Athletes need to move quickly and make fast decisions in sports which makes these exercises so useful.
The Agility Ladder Calories Burned Versus The Treadmill
Here is a test I conducted with my girlfriend using a heart rate monitor. She weighed in at (132lbs) burned 1,225 calories per hour using an agility ladder. The next day she burned 240 calories on her typical treadmill routine.
Doing a variety of cardio workouts is best. Some days will be more intense than others but you do not want to fall into a routine where you are constantly doing the same exercise every day its a good practice to mix different types of HIT training into your regimen.
When running on a treadmill or using a stationary bike it can get your mind disconnected from the actual workout goal which keeps yourself in a mindless neurological pattern. Once developing that comfort your body stops responding and your mind can lose interest quickly on the cardio task. See for yourself after a week of fitness ladder training your going to feel more engaged in your workouts.
Don’t Hesitate, Work The Fast Twitch Muscles With Fitness Ladder Workouts
The type 2 muscle fibers come in activating the fast-twitch muscle set. They are responsible for creating explosiveness and they are mainly overlooked.
They can be key when trying to lose weight. Your slow-twitch muscles are used for endurance like marathon running or biking. If you have the correct balance it will help you lose weight faster and make you extremely athletic.
The average person usually has a 50/50 balance of fast-twitch to slow-twitch muscle. Some people can have a muscle composition dominance to 80% fast twitch to slow twitch or vice versa.
The agility ladder can help develop the fast-twitch muscles if you are lacking. Fast-twitch muscle fibers produce their energy from oxygenated blood and lactic acids. Sports sciences prove that women who focus on stimulating the fast-twitch muscles lose more overall body weight at an accelerated rate.
Here Are Some Popular Agility Ladder Drills To Get You Started:
Fitness Ladder Exercise #1 – The Linear Run Through
Run straight through this obstacle by placing your feet inside every box. When you get to the last part of the ladder, double back aiming to keep your heart rate elevated. When advancing cut the amount of time your feet touch the floor, imagine like you are playing the child’s game “lava” and drive your knees as high as you can to get the full workout.
Fitness Ladder Exercise #2 – The Lateral Shuffle
Identical to the exercise above the objective with this article is to have your feet in the box while striding laterally (side to side). Maintain a slight bend in your knees to be easy on your joints.
Fitness Ladder Exercise #3 – The Squat and Hop
Add some explosiveness to your routine. Try a squat, this exercise will work your glutes, simultaneously your heart rate will rise making it a plyometric exercise. By training the squat it may increase power by turning up the range of motion in the exercise, If you desire to ramp up your workout, hold onto a kettlebell or medicine ball to add the exercise, This will make it a variation of a weighted squat. Just be mindful and do not compromise good form.
Fitness Ladder Exercise #4 – The Bear Crawl
The bear crawl as much as it is grueling its an advanced ladder drill so you can hit your upper body and work on some abs. In this exercise its all backward, Before learning how to walk you have to crawl. The correct form requires you to start in a crouching position with your shoulders above your knees which are a few inches hovering above the ground. Once you get the hang of it the move is almost like a game of twister. You move your arms and upper body from side to side to find the right opening. Your whole body stays engaged throughout the exercise.
Fitness Ladder Exercise #1 – The Football Shuffle
The Football Shuffle is a complex exercise but once you master it you will get memories of one of your favorite sports movies., so don’t stress if you can’t get it down on your first try. To execute this obstacle, take alternating steps with each foot inside and then outside of the box, and then take a moment to drive a knee up towards your chest to graze the opposite side elbow. switch knees while progressing across the boxes. It helps to keep a short count in your head to stay in rhythm.
Why Wait Another Day? Where To Get a Fitness Ladder.
When it comes to finding a fitness ladder it can be somewhat troublesome. My first attempt was at Walmart, No luck.
My second attempt was trying to find a sporting good store in my area, the small retailer was charging 39.99 which seemed very high.
I then went to my gym to ask where they source their smaller equipment from. To my surprise, they did not even own a fitness ladder.
After searching online there were many listings on Amazon but they were originating from China and I was concerned that the ladder would not be the correct size. A standard agility ladder should be 15 feet long and 20 inches wide.
So after realizing all of this at Spectral Body, we have decided to offer a special promotion if you buy a Fitness Ladder we will include another ladder for FREE with this discount code “LADDER2020” work out with your partner or let the kids play with them outside without marking up your drive with sidewalk chalks.
My offer is simple,
ACT NOW YOU WILL GET 2 LADDERS FOR THE PRICE OF ONE!
Fitness ladders are great for the entire family. This is your moment to get a fitness ladder today and comment below if you have used ladders for specific sports training.