On the last day of our Boot Camp I wanted to challenge the players cardiovascular systems but also limit the impact on their body and a great pool workout achieves both goals. Once in the pool I divided the group into 4 teams and put each team in a lane (approximately 6 players per lane).
The pool we used started at about 3 feet on one end and became much deeper on the other end due to a diving area, so each of the below exercises we performed to the half-way point and then back; repeating each one so each exercise was done twice. Arms were to stay above the water for each exercise below.
- Forward Running: Players ran as fast as possible through the water.
- Backwards Running: Players ran as fast as possible backwards through the water.
- Karaoke: Players faced the same direction down and back and Karaoke’d through the water.
- High Knees Forward: High knees moving forward through the water driving the knees as high as possible.
- High Knees Sideways: High knees moving sideways facing the same direction down and back.
- Butte Kicks: Butt kicks moving forward through the water.
- Slides: Defensive slides through the water facing the same direction down and back.
- Alternate High Skips: Skipping forward trying to explode out of the water as high as possible.
- Alternate Long Skips: Skipping forward trying to explode through the water as far as possible on each skip.
- Forward Long Jumps: With both feet together, players jump as far as possible through the water.
- Backward Long Jumps: With both feet together, players jump as far as possible through the water.
- Forward High Jumps: With both feet together, players jump as high as possible exploding out of the water.
- Backward High Jumps: With both feet together, players jump as high as possible exploding out of the water.
- High Knee Crossovers: Players move sideways and doing a high crossover step, like karaoke but knees comes up as high as possible, on way back opposite leg should be the crossover.
After a quick water break the players jumped back in the pool and spread themselves out in their lanes at least arms width apart. This segment of the workout I incorporated some stationary exercises; everything was for 30 seconds and we did each exercise for 30 seconds.
- Butterflies: With everything below the water except the head and neck, players performed front to back butterflies; keeping their hands open and in a position to push water to make the workout more strenuous.
- 45 Degree High Knees: Rather than do normal high knees, I had the players perform stationery high knees in which they opened up their hips and their knees lifted up to their sides at about a 45 degree angle.
- Jumping Jacks: Starting with everything below the water except head and neck, players did jumping jacks exploding out of the water working on upper and lower body explosion out of the water.
- 90 Degree Ski Jumps: Players start with feet together and knees slightly bent, when the exercise begins they explode up using mostly their calves/toes and rotate their hips 90 degrees so the feet are together and facing the side but the upper body is still facing forward. The player quickly then returns to the starting position and repeats the opposite direction; continuing this for the entire time.
- 180 Degree Ski Jumps: Same exercise as above except now the players rotate all the way around to face the opposite direction and then return to the starting position and continue repeating, rotating each direction.
- Foot Fire-Slide-Explode:
To end the workout I wanted the guys to get a little competitive and also have some fun. I divided each lane in half so there were about 4 players at each end of the pool in each lane. I even decided to jump in and finish the workout with the guys! We did a variety of swimming relay races in the pool in which you had to end up back to your starting point; meaning each player always had to go twice. If any of your players are not good swimmers, have them hold onto the lane ropes at the deep end. I am glad we are basketball players because we would not be winning any Gold medals anytime soon. Below are strokes we used to race:
To finish off the day I had one of our Senior leaders race our Head Coach down and back. To make it fun I had the players pick who they thought would win and the losers did an extra 1 minute of exercises.
The pool workout was the perfect way to end our week of Boot Camp. Not only was it an a great cardiovascular workout, but the guys had a great time doing it as well. We may even go back and do another one during the season to give our players a day off the hardwood.
It has been an extremely busy Fall and I will have a video our all four days of our Boot Camp up hopefully in a few weeks. If you missed any of the previous days you can read them here, Day 1, Day 2, Day 3. As always if you have any questions about anything we did please don’t hesitate to let me know.