Purpose

To develop core and upper body strength.

Setup

Athletes get into groups of 3. One athlete starts laying on the ground on their stomach. One athlete will stand over them, facing the same direction. Lastly, the 3rd athlete will stand about 3 feet in front of his teammates holding a medicine ball.

Medicine Ball Prone Backwards Toss Drill: Athlete flipping the ball up behind them after it was rolled to them by their teammate.

Instructions

  1. The athlete on the ground will begin in the superman position, with their arms land legs lifted a few inches up off the ground.
  2. On the coach’s command, the teammate with the ball will gently roll the ball towards their teammate laying on the ground.
  3. The athlete on the ground will then, in one motion, while keeping their elbows off the ground, lift the ball and throw it up and over their head to their teammate standing over them, who will catch the ball.
  4. The 3rd teammate will throw the ball back to the 1st, who will catch it and roll it forward once again.
  5. Repeat for about 6 reps, then rotate all 3 athletes.
  6. Repeat for 6 more reps, then rotate one more time getting the last teammate a set.

Coaching Tips:

This motion mimics the pumping of the arms during the sprint to generate force and can be hugely beneficial for sprinters and hurdlers.

Tips for Younger Athletes:

  1. Start by teaching them the proper superman position and the importance of maintaining it throughout the drill. This foundational understanding will ensure better results and reduce the risk of injury.
  2. Make sure the player rolling the ball does so with caution. Encourage them to understand the difference between a controlled roll and a forceful push. A controlled roll ensures that their teammate has adequate time to react and safely execute the toss.
  3. Initially, allow younger players to break the movement into two parts: first catching the ball and then tossing it. Once they get the hang of this, they can work on combining the actions into one fluid motion.

Tips for Older Athletes:

  1. Encourage experienced players to consistently engage their core muscles, not just when they are lifting the ball but throughout the entire exercise. This will ensure maximum power generation during the toss.
  2. Challenge them to generate force primarily from their core and upper body, trying to toss the ball higher and further backward each time. This increased effort should still maintain proper form to avoid injuries.
  3. Emphasize the importance of snapping the wrists upon release to achieve added momentum and height in the toss. This technique, when mastered, can significantly improve the power of their throw.