Beach Volleyball Conditioning
The Warm-up II

by Eric Hand, MA, CMT
http://fasttwitchfitness.blogspot.com

In this edition we’ll continue developing an efficient and effective warm-up for the beach game.  A quick observation of beach volleyball clearly indicates that power is a key component to our success. As the power needs of the sport increase so does the importance of the warm-up. If we are expecting our body to react and sprint, dive and jump in that first play it would be wise of us to do a little prep work first.

A simple, focused lower body warm-up can increase muscle temperature and blood flow to our leg muscles allowing for faster muscle contraction, force development and reaction time.  An effective warm-up can be completed in as little as 8-12 minutes. Think of this time as an investment to both reduce your risk of injury and prepare your body for the explosive demands that will be placed on it as soon as the first ball is served.

High knee walk

This movement is designed to wake up those hamstrings and hip flexors.  Start on the right side line and face the left side line.  Lift your right knee high (to approximately 90 degrees of hip and knee flexion) while bringing your left hand near your left ear.  Step down with your right leg and immediately bring your left knee and right hand up.  Continue walking across the court like this until you’ve reached the left side line, turnaround and repeat to the right side line.

High knee walk photo 1

 

High knee run

This movement is very similar to the high knee walk, however this time we’ll add a quick hop as we step down.  Start on the right side line and face the left side line.  Lift your right leg high (to approximately 90 degrees of hip and knee flexion) while bringing your left hand near your left ear.  Step down with your right leg bringing your left knee and right hand up and immediately taking a small hop on your right leg.  Switch legs, this time taking a small hop with your left leg.  Continue until you’ve reached the left side line, turnaround and repeat to the right side line.

High Knee run

 

Shuffle

Start by facing the net on the right side line and lower into an athletic stance with a slight bend at the hips and knees. Leading with the left foot, sidestep pushing off with the right foot. Shuffle toward the left side line making sure you do not cross your feet.  Keep your shoulders square and your gaze towards the net in front of you.   Gradually work to lower your stance while you shuffle. 

shuffle exercise 1

shuffle 2

 

Carioca or Grapevine (advanced)
A great movement to warm-up those hips and improve range of motion in the trunk.  Start by facing the net on the right side line and hold your arms out to the side in a T position.  Run laterally (toward the left side line) by crossing your right foot in front of your left and then quickly stepping your right foot behind your left (side step, crossover step, side step, crossover behind).  Allow your hips to rotate and your arms to follow.  Be sure to keep the knee high as it crosses the body and hold your upper body relatively stationary.

crossover 1 exercise

crossover 2

crossover 3

 

These simple and effective warm-up exercises will prepare your muscles for the high demands of the beach game and your opponents won’t know what hit them.  Straight down! 

See you on the beach!

Eric Hand, MA , CMT
Clinical Exercise Physiologist
Fast Twitch Fitness

“We’re all athletes. Some of us are just farther along in our training.”

See Eric's other articles at his blog: http://fasttwitchfitness.blogspot.com.

 

 

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