Are you tired of being beat because you’re slower than everyone else? Each night, you sit there lying on your bed dreaming about becoming a faster athlete, but you don’t know how to develop explosive speed, nor do you know where to start.  You can’t afford a trainer and you only have a certain amount of extra time per day on top of your other obligations. Don’t worry, we have you covered to get you started.  This guide will show you how to develop explosive speed and the necessary equipment that you need to buy.  All it takes is a decision to start training on your own and 15 minutes of dedication per day to start.

Now, we know what you’re thinking… “15 minutes a day is all I need to become explosive? That is how to develop explosive speed? Yeah right!”

Well, of course that would be the proper response to such a bold headline.  We’re not saying that 15 minutes of training every day is going to make you a world class athlete, but its a great starting point for athletes that are looking to “do a little extra” than what is required from them at practice. You have to start somewhere when thinking about how to develop your explosive speed and making the decision to start today is what will set you apart from your competition.

If you take away anything from this article on how to develop explosive speed, remember this: 15 minutes of additional training per day adds up over the course of the year. If you don’t think that adding an extra 15-20 minutes of training per day will make a difference, then take a look at the following numbers:

15-20 minutes of explosive speed training per day, per year equates to:

5,475 – 7,300 minutes, or

91-121 HOURS OF ADDITIONAL TRAINING PER YEAR

In just one year, if you apply yourself for an extra 10-20 minutes per day, you will put yourself ahead of your competition by 60-120+ hours of training per year.  That’s 60-120 hours of extra muscle development, cardiovascular training, and technique learning. That’s how to develop explosive speed. You have to apply yourself everyday and create small victories in order to be dominant on the field.

We can break it down even more.

You will be doing 182-242 extra half-hour workouts per year over your competition.  That’s a significant amount of extra training over your competition, and it can be achieved with very little discipline.  All you need is a couple pieces of equipment and a relentless work ethic for 15-20 minutes per day and you will start to pull away from your competition with your explosive power.

Self discipline is what breeds success.  You don’t need to hire a speed coach, especially at a young age, to teach you how to develop explosive speed. There are so many resources available today to learn anything you want to learn about strength and conditioning.

Now, in order to learn how to develop explosive speed in just 15 minutes per day, you need to have a game plan in order.  You need the right training equipment, the right training regimen, and you need to clear out a short amount of time each day in order to execute this training plan.  Luckily for you, we have you covered.  Below is a step by step guide for you to get everything started so that you can work on developing your explosive speed and blast by your competition.


The Equipment

In order to work on how to develop your explosive speed, you will need to pick up some equipment essentials to get started.

First off, you’re going to need to pick up some plyometric boxes.  There are a variety of different types of boxes that you can choose from when it comes to picking up the right boxes for your training needs.  Plyometric boxes come in a variety of sizes and are made out of a variety of different materials.  From wood to metal to soft foam, we have done the necessary research to help you pick up the right training box for your needs.

Wood Plyometric Boxes

There are various types of plyometric boxes out there today, with the most traditional form being wood.  Wood plyometric boxes are popular with trainers and crossfitters across the country because they are extremely durable and will continue to perform despite taking a beating from vigorous use.

However, the knock against wood plyometric boxes is that they are big, bulky, and take up a lot of space. And, when it comes to wooden plyometric boxes, there is some wood working assembly required to put the box together. If you don’t have an electric drill and some basic building skills, then wood may not be the best type of ploy boxes for you.

If you do have those skills, then you cannot go wrong with wood.  Also, we highly recommend that you take the experience level of all athletes that are using the boxes into consideration before purchasing.  With wood boxes, there runs the potential for you to scrape up your shins if you happen to miss a jump onto the box while training.  It’s not a fun experience when you miss a jump and scrape up your shins. It is painful and we want to stress that all athletes, no matter what their skill level is, to use caution when using any type of hard plyometric box.

With that being said, if you’re in the market for a set of wood boxes, you cannot go wrong with the Rep Fitness 3 in 1 Wood Plyometric Box.  These boxes are solid, affordable, and come in a variety of different sizes for all ages and skill levels.  What’s great about this box is it’s three-in-one design and increased versatility due to its unique internal bracing design. You can lay this 3/4″ thick box on any of the six sides and have the confidence knowing that you have a strong, reliable surface that you’re jumping up on.

Buy the Rep Fitness 3 in 1 Wood Plyometric Box on Amazon here.

Metal Plyometric Boxes

If wood plyometric boxes are not for you, then we recommend that you go with metal plyometric boxes.  This popular form of plyometric box is popular because of several reasons.  First, they are pretty much indestructible and will last through years of vigorous use. The heavy duty steel construction also provides a little bit more safety for your shins on mis-jumps due to their design.

Secondly, metal boxes have a safe, non-slip landing platform that helps provide cushion and minimizes slippage on landings.  This gives the athlete a more stable and reliable surface to land on, which is something to keep in consideration when you’re starting out.

Lastly, when you purchase metal plyometric box kits, they come with the feature of being able to be stacked together for storage purposes. The wide base design that tapers up to the landing surface allows these to be stacked like a weightlifting version of a Russian nesting doll, making them ideal for anyone who needs to store these away because of limited space.

When it comes to purchasing the best boxes, we recommend to pick up the Titan Fitness Plyometric Box Set. These plyometric boxes are easy to put together and are extremely durable, making them ideal for athletes that are looking to pick up a variety of boxes that will withstand heavy usage. The boxes come in a set of three, with the height at 12″, 18″, and 24″, which allows them to be ideal for a variety of training exercises. Titan Fitness’ boxes are the best boxes that we could find that offer extreme durability and ease of use to put together.  However, if you’re a more experienced jumper looking to explode higher than 24″, we recommend going with Ader Black Plyometric Platform Boxes that have various height options up to 42″.

Buy the Titan Fitness Plyometric Box Set on Amazon today.

Foam Plyometric Boxes

We know what you’re thinking… A plyometric box made out of foam?

Well, it’s true.  The newest form of plyometric boxes have grown exponentially in popularity over the past five years with trainers and gyms across the world.  Foam boxes are popular because of several reasons. First, they are extremely lightweight and can be moved around to meet the training needs of the large majority of athletes. A majority of them are approximately 50 lbs and are a breeze to rearrange in the middle of your workout.

Secondly, the high density foam is much safer for athletes and minimizes any potential injuries that could arise in plyometric jump training from being a beginner or pushing the envelope.  Athletes don’t have to worry about shin scraping with these boxes that are the perfect combination of durability and safety.

The high density foam in these types of boxes are extremely durable and will hold up through a lot of abuse despite being made out of foam.  If you have had a bad experience with wood or metal boxes, or you’re just uneasy about your jumping ability starting out, then we highly recommend that you use foam boxes until you become comfortable with your jump training.

When it comes to the best plyometric foam box, we recommend the SPRI Qube.  This box is the softest & safest plyometric box on the market and comes with a curable PVC vinyl covering that resists wear and tear from heavy usage.  Although the box is on the pricer side, if you don’t have a set budget and are looking for the best foam box on the market, then we recommend the Qube.

 

Buy the SPRI Qube on Amazon here.

For those who are on a budget, you cannot go wrong with the Sunny Health & Fitness or Fuel Pureformance Plyometric Boxes.  Both boxes are a 3-in-1 plyometric box that offer 28″, 24″, and 20″ training heights for athletes that are looking to do a variety of exercises in their jump training.  Both companies offer a box made of ultra dense foam and PVC fabric coating to ensure durability with heavy usage.

Buy the Sunny Health & Fitness or Fuel Pureformance Plyometric Boxes on Amazon.

Dumbbells & Weight Vests (Optional)

For stronger & more advanced athletes, you may need to incorporate some weight resistance to make the exercises more difficult. There are two products that you may need to pick up that we recommend because of personal experience with these products.

When it comes to versatility and compatibility, there are no better dumbbells on the market than the Bowflex SelectTech 552 Dumbbells. With weights that are adjustable up to 52.5 pounds per dumbbell in 2.5 pound increments, these are the most adaptable dumbbells you can buy.  These are also a space saver too, keeping you away from having to buy a dumbbell rack and an entire dumbbell set.

If you want to wear your resistance, then you should think about purchasing a weight vest. The RunFast Weight Vest is a favorite of our because it is comfortable and compatible.  This vest offers resistance from 12 to 140 pounds and as your strength develops, you will be able to swap out for heavier weights in order to make your workout challenging.


The Training Plan

Now that you have the necessary equipment, its time to put together a training plan that will challenge you and push you to your limits in the short period of time that you have to train.  When thinking about how to develop explosive speed, many athletes and trainers mistake activity for achievement and feel that plyometric training should be a cardiovascular workout more than anything.  What you need to understand with this training regimen on how to develop explosive speed is that you should focus on doing these movements with power and explosiveness.

We highly advise that when you are doing plyometric training that you refrain from just cruising through the workout “to get a sweat” and have a cardiovascular return.  What you should be focusing on is executing each exercise with thrust and power, making sure that your form is as close to perfect as you can get it. That mindset will help you realize that plyometric training isn’t an insanity class, and you should approach it with a methodical mindset as an athlete.

Now, all you need to get started is 15 minutes of extra plyometric training each day. If you are feeling ambitious and want to apply yourself more than the required minimum amount of time, you can alter the amount of sets that you do or add weight in the form of dumbbells or a weight vest in order to lengthen the workout.

Exercises

#1 – Standard Front Box Jump

The Standard Front Box Jump is your most basic form of plyometric exercise and used widespread to help athletes to develop power in their legs and improve upon their vertical jump. This explosive movement can have a series of variations added to it to make it more difficult as you become stronger (single leg, seated down, etc).

Standard Front Box Jump – Sets/Reps: 3×10

The ideal setup for the standard front box jump is the following:

  • Place a plyometric box approximately 6-8 inches in front of your stance
  • Drop down into a squat position with your feet about shoulder-width apart and back straight
  • Explode upward from that squat position, activating your quadriceps, glutes, hips, while swinging your arms with momentum.
  • Land softy on the top of the plyometric box on the “balls of your feet”.
  • Step down one leg at a time in a controlled manner to ensure safety.
  • Reset yourself, reload your squat position, and repeat.

#2 – Lateral Box Jump

The lateral box jump is a movement that adopts the same explosive movement of the Standard Front Box Jump.  Instead of facing the plyometric box, you will stand next to the plyometric box with the box approximately 8 inches away from your hip at your side.  This explosive movement builds on your lateral strength as well by firing your inner & outer legs (abductors & adductors) to explode.

Remember to focus on using an explosive movement upward to fire your hips and quads while having a soft, controlled landing at the top of the box.

Lateral Box Jump – Sets/Reps: 3×10

  • Place a plyometric box approximately 6-8 inches at 90 degrees to the side of your stance
  • Drop down into a squat position with your feet about shoulder-width apart and back straight
  • Explode upward and towards the box from that squat position, activating your quadriceps, glutes & hips, while swinging your arms with momentum.
  • Land softy on the top of the plyometric box on the “balls of your feet”.
  • Step down one leg at a time one the other side of the box in a controlled manner to ensure safety.
  • Reset yourself, reload your squat position, and repeat from the other side of the box that you stepped down on.

#3 – Single Leg Box Jump

The Single Leg Box Jump is a variation of the Standard Box Jump, now with just using one leg at a time to explode upward.  This exercise helps develops strength in any deficiencies that you may have on one side of your body.  This method of training also helps prevent injury and train fast twitch muscle fibers that will allow you to develop your overall maximum force for explosive power.

Single Leg Box Jump – Sets/Reps: 2×8

  • Place a plyometric box approximately 6-8 inches in front of your stance
  • Drop down into a half position on one leg and explode upward from that position as quickly as possible to the top of the plyometric box.
  • While in the air, be sure to pull the knee of the leg you jumped from upward as quickly as possible to prepare it for landing on the box.
  • Land softy on the top of the plyometric box on the “ball of your foot” and stand up tall to finish the movement.
  • Step down one leg at a time one the other side of the box in a controlled manner to ensure safety.
  • Reset yourself, reload your squat position, and repeat.  Finish the entire set for one leg before moving to your other leg.

#4 – Lunge Box Jumps

Lunge box jumps are an exercise that develop both strength and endurance in your lower body while lengthening your reach with your legs.  This multifaceted exercise promotes developing strength in a long, stretched out posture that helps with injury prevention while developing power from being in an unfavorable position.  This exercise will help translate into explosive linear power as well, which is a crucial element in how to develop explosive speed.

Lunge Box Jumps – Sets/Reps: 3×10

  • Start with one foot on top of your plyometric box and another foot back in a lunge position
  • When ready, explode upward with your leg on the plyometric box, pushing your body vertically.
  • While in the air, bring your opposite foot forward and land on that foot on top of the plyometric box, with your other leg landing in the lunge position
  • Switch back and forth between legs in a smooth, controlled manner, focusing on posture and your knee bend.
  • Step down one leg at a time one the other side of the box in a controlled manner to ensure safety.
  • Reset yourself, reload your squat position, and repeat.  Finish the entire set for one leg before moving to your other leg.

#5 – ISO Step Ups

The isometric step up is an exercise encouraged by world-renown strength coach Ryan Flaherty  to develop strength and endurance in your quadriceps, which are pivotal in thinking about how to develop explosive speed.  This exercise should be completed at the end of your workout when your dominant leg muscles are exhausted. This will help you develop any strength imbalances that you may have in your legs, which is pivotal in how to develop explosive speed as well as prevent injuries.

Since recording the @timferriss podcast I've been getting a lot of questions regarding quad/ VMO exercises that should be used in place of leg extensions at the gym. Here are 3 that I highly recommend for athletes of all levels. – ISO step ups: do 3 sets of 20 reps at the beginning of your lower body workout. Focus on keeping the same knee flexion the entire time and not raising or lowering your center of mass the entire set. – the second video is a single leg wall sit: do 3 sets of 30 seconds each leg. Can be done at the beginning or end of your lower body workout. – the third exercise is a single leg "flaherty" squat: lol I like the name. Do 3 sets of 8 reps each leg. I like to do 8 seconds down and 8 seconds up so 16 seconds per rep. (It's a BURNER!). Good luck!! Comment with any questions and I'll try to answer. Thanks to my model @griffwhalen 😂

A post shared by Ryan J Flaherty (@ryanjflaherty) on

ISO Step Ups – Sets/Reps: 3×20 each leg

  • Start by standing on top of your plyometric box with your knees bent as close to 90 degrees as possible.
  • Keep your back straight & your head looking forward – try not to bend over too far forward at the waist.
  • Reaching back with one leg, tap the ground behind the plyometric box while isometrically holding your balance leg to the same knee flexion.
  • Return the leg that reaches back to a tap again at the top of the plyometric box next to your balancing leg.
  • Repeat the movement for 20 reps before switching legs.

#6 – Single Leg Wall Sit

To continue to develop the necessary strength required to be an explosive athlete in your quads, the next exercise will be the Single Leg Wall Sit. This exercise will challenge your hip flexors at the same time as your quads because you will be straightening your resting leg out in front of you, much similar to the form of the pistol squat. Building leg strength is pivotal when working on how to develop explosive speed, so make sure that you focus on this exercise especially.

ISO Step Ups – Sets/Reps: 3×20 each leg

  • Start by standing on top of your plyometric box with your feet approximately 18 inches away from a flat wall surface.
  • Putting your back against the wall, drop down into a squat at 90 degrees, making sure that your knees are in line with your ankle and behind your toes.
  • With your back straight & your head looking forward, raise one leg close to 90 degrees as possible, and keep it straight out with your quadricep flexed.  Don’t allow your knee to bend.
  • Hold the squat for 30 seconds, then bring your leg down that was sticking out, and switch legs.
  • Repeat the movement for 3 sets, 30 seconds per leg per set.

#7 – Single Leg Assisted Pistol Squat

The final exercise for you to perform to develop strength in your legs and work on your imbalances is the Single Leg Assisted Pistol Squat.  This exercise will strengthen the imbalances in your legs as well as serve as a good final burnout. Speed is not the key in this drill as as you are to lower yourself in a controlled fashion.

Single Leg Assisted Pistol Squat – Sets/Reps: 3×8 each leg (8 seconds down, 8 seconds up, 16 seconds total)

  • Start by standing with your knee/toe approximately 2 inches away from a post, pole, or door frame.  You will need something to hold on to for your balance and weight.  If you have a training partner, have them hold your hands.
  • With one leg off of the ground, lower yourself into a 90 degree squat position in a controlled manner, taking a total of 8 seconds to reach 90 degrees.
  • Once you have hit 90 degrees, bring yourself back up to the starting position in a slow & controlled manner, taking a total of 8 seconds to reach back up to the top of your squat.
  • The entire move should be 16 seconds per rep in a slow, controlled manner and will be a leg burning exercise.
  • Repeat the movement for 8 total reps, then switch to your other leg.  Complete 3 total sets.

The “How To Develop Explosive Speed in 15 Minutes” Workout:

  1. Standard Box Jumps – 3×10
  2. Lateral Box Jumps – 3×10
  3. Single Leg Box Jumps – 2×8
  4. Lunge Box Jumps – 3×10
  5. ISO Step Ups – 3×20
  6. Single Leg Wall Sit – 3×30 seconds per leg
  7. Single Leg Pistol Squat – 3×8 (16 seconds per leg, controlled manner)

There you have it.  Now that you know how to develop explosive speed, you need to apply yourself and get to work! Remember, repetition and work ethic are the foundation to what develops the strength, the endurance, and the mindset to be go out and be a lion on the field, court, rink, or diamond.

You have to make the decision, however, to practice this elite training plan put together that shows you the necessary equipment and training regimen on how to develop explosive speed. It’s time to go out, apply yourself and explode your game to the next level.

If you liked this article on how to develop explosive speed for your game, then you need to check out our guide to The Best Speed & Training Products For Athletes as well. Everyone knows that speed kills, so we have the perfect guide to help you develop your speed and take your game to the next level.