• Explosive Medicine Ball Training
    Dynamic effort or speed strength is associated with an athlete’s ability to execute a movement quickly against a relatively small external force. Explosive medicine ball training is an alternative to Olympic-style lifting that can be used to develop muscular power.
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  • Med Balls

    Dynamic effort or speed strength is associated with an athlete’s ability to execute a movement quickly against a relatively small external force. With regards to applications, explosive medicine ball (MB) training can be associated with improved rates of force development along with increases in explosive strength. 

    The reason for this is because the athlete needs to move his or her bodyweight against an external resistance in a rapid manner during many different sport tasks. 

    The movements associated with explosive MB training are typically associated with sport-specific speed of movements. 

    This may be why the transfer of training can be high with the utilization of explosive MB training.

    With regards to implementation, MB training can be utilized in place of the Olympic-style movements. The reason for this is because explosive MB training has been associated with a great deal of motor unit involvement (90–95%). It has been said that motor unit activation is similar in explosive MB exercises when compared to Olympic-style weightlifting movements. 

    Explosive MB training and Olympic Weightlifting are both associated with a great deal of motor unit involvement, and can both be used to improve speed strength and explosive strength.

    So, it can be said that explosive MB training can be utilized within training programs in place of Olympic Weightlifting. That is not to say that Olympic Weightlifting should not be utilized within the training plan, but it can be said that explosive MB training can be used to target the same adaptations, improving speed of movement against an external resistance. It can also be said that explosive MB training can be used during competition phases in place of Olympic Weightlifting because of the decreased risk of injury to the wrists and other body parts.

    To promote speed strength and explosive strength it can be recommended that when utilizing explosive MB training the exercises should promote triple extension of the ankles, knees, and hips, along with promoting rotational movements for athletes that are exposed to rotational movement patterns during their respective sport.
     
     

  • Kevin Cronin

    About the Author:

    Kevin Cronin, MS, CSCS,*D, USAW

    Kevin Cronin has worked with Collegiate, Olympic, and Professional level athletes over the last three years, working with All-Americans, All-Conference selections, NCAA National Champions, National Champions, and World Champions. Kevin has worked at Stanford University and the University of Texas as a volunteer Strength and Conditioning Coach. He currently serves as the Head Strength and Conditioning Coach at Colorado College.

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  • Disclaimer: The National Strength and Conditioning Association (NSCA) encourages the exchange of diverse opinions. The ideas, comments, and materials presented herein do not necessarily reflect the NSCA’s official position on an issue. The NSCA assumes no responsibility for any statements made by authors, whether as fact, opinion, or otherwise. 
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