5 Ways to Become a Better Athlete At Home
This quarantine has gone on way longer than I suspected. And there have been tons of athletes messaging me about ways to become a better athlete at home. While I shared a BUNCH already, I figured I’d make a comprehensible list here so you know… plain and simple… a bunch of ways to become a better athlete at home.
These are easy to implement, don’t take much time… But if you take action on them daily, and put consistent effort and focus towards them… You’ll come out of this whole fiasco a better athlete.
1. Work on Your Structure
I’ve never worked with an athlete who didn’t have a structural deficiency. By structural deficiency, I mean a muscular imbalance, or faulty movement pattern, that drained their performance.
Some athletes have it worse than others. But, either way, you should look at these imbalances and structural deficiencies similarly to how you look at bad habits in your game. If you’re a basketball player, and have a bad habit of not using the backboard on your lay-ups, when you learn to eliminate that habit, it’ll almost instantly boost your performance.
Same goes for muscle imbalances and structural deficiencies.
Once you address them and gradually improve them, you’ll see your athleticism, explosiveness, and strength quickly rise. And this is simply because you’ve brought stability to your body. This allows for improved movement efficiency and efficient energy expenditure.
See, a guy with forward head posture, rounded shoulders, and Donald Duck butt has to spend MORE energy doing work like sprinting, jumping, and cutting than an athlete with sound structure.
One of the reasons is that structural deficiencies throw off your center of balance. The farther parts of your body are away from your center of mass, the less stable you are, and the harder your muscles have to work to perform athletic movements.
In other words, imbalances and structural imbalances force your body to work harder than it has to, and they take away from your performance.
To fix these issues, you should perform mobility, stretching, and corrective exercises suited to your needs daily.
You can read more about the solutions here:
3 Knee Stabilization Exercises for Jumpers December 23, 2019
Mobility Exercises for Athletes November 11, 2019
Patch Up Your Energy Leaks (Fix Imbalances) April 17, 2019
2. Raise Your Game IQ
Almost all of the sports channels are replaying CLASSIC games throughout their respective histories. Battles of will, top-notch strategies, and high IQ plays are on display.
Are you taking advantage of that?
Most athletes aren’t. And the ones who do tune in, aren’t watching with an analytical mind.
However, when you look at these classic games as an opportunity to get mentored by a legendary player on how to excel in your sport, you can start to see the value in analyzing these games.
Not only your favorite players moves, or exciting plays they make… But also the strategy behind the game. How the game is flowing, why players and coaches make the decisions they do… And if they do make a mistake, what you could’ve done in that situation to avoid their mistakes.
In this way, they become a kind of simulation for you.
There’s also something to be said about the power of the mind here.
I’ve heard stories of prisoners of war who never played basketball thinking about sinking a perfect free throw over and over again while stuck in their cell. When they’re eventually released, they come out armed with sharp free throw shooting ability.
Think about how you could use this to your advantage with all the tools at your disposal.
3. Sharpen Your Speed Mechanics
You knew this was coming.
But, it really is great way to become a better athlete at home.
There’s no equipment required. No special space. Just you and patch of grass.
Sadly, most athletes avoid working on their speed mechanics because admittedly, it can be frustrating. But, once you get a handle on them, it’ll help you IMMENSELY in your sport.
More than that, I’ve created multiple posts that lay out the BEST and EASIEST ways to sharpen your speed mechanics.
In short, you couple speed mechanics drills with a sprint to almost trick your brain into adopting the right sprinting mechanics. Sounds crazy, but it’s really simple.
You can find a few powerful posts on how to do this below:
3 Sprinting Mistakes that DRAIN Your Speed April 7, 2020
Advanced Linear Speed Drills for Athletic Speed March 18, 2020
Best Linear Speed Drills for Superior Speed [Pt. 2] March 2, 2020
[Fix You Sprint] 3 Best Drills for Linear Speed February 26, 2020
The Truth About Speed January 24, 2020
4. Find Your Caloric Baseline
If you already have a handle on your nutrition, skip to the next step.
However, if you don’t, you should know that you’re leaving a mountain of athletic potential on the table.
See, while average people can get by on their three meals a day doing whatever they want, YOU CAN’T.
It’s similar to the way that a truck requires diesel fuel while regular cars require unleaded.
If you’re filling your body with unleaded fuel, you’ll lack the energy, strength, and power to excel in the weight room, at practice, and on the field.
Luckily, I’ve created a bunch of resources on the blog of how to eat as an athlete.
And if you take advantage of these resources, you have the potential to become TWICE the athlete you were before this whole pandemic started. Getting a handle on your nutrition is a powerful way to become a better athlete at home.
You can find those resources below:
How to Build Muscle and Lose Fat for Athletes March 31, 2020
5 Bulking Mistakes All Athletes Should Avoid March 22, 2020
COMPLETE Guide to Cutting for Athletes March 14, 2020
The Best Nutrition Guidelines for Athletes February 29, 2020
What is Performance Nutrition? February 20, 2020
Additionally, if you want to skip the guessing-games and learn the most innovative method for eating as an athlete… You can look into my Nutritionist’s newest book, Performance Nutrition.
5. Enhance Your Movement Quality
Most athletes don’t realize this, but my goal in training an athlete is to enhance the movement qualities specific to their sport.
This is why I train MOVEMENTS, not MUSCLES.
And enhancing movement quality doesn’t necessarily require weights. Weights are just tools to add extra stimulus while training movements.
There are a few ways you can enhance your movement quality to become a better athlete at home:
- Fix your structural deficiencies
- Pay Attention to Detail While Moving
- Perform the Movement Repeatedly With Precision
In other words, now is a time you can assess deficiencies in your movement then spend time to correct the deficiencies by performing the movement with no weight. I realize that only the most committed athletes will take me up on this advice because it sounds monotonous.
However, as I said above, deficiencies are like bad habits.
And when you remove those bad habits from your movement, you could see your athleticism INSTANTLY make a HUGE jump.
Additionally, if you want a program that will help you improve your movement quality at home, you can try Athletic Calisthenics.
It doesn’t just contain your standard push-ups, pull-ups, and sit-ups…
It combines advanced bodyweight movements WITH POWERFUL athletic training methods.
Summary: 5 Ways to Become a Better Athlete at Home
As a quick summary, here are 5 ways how to become a better athlete at home:
- Work On Your Structure
- Raise Your Game IQ
- Sharpen Your Speed Mechanics
- Find Your Caloric Baseline
- Enhance Your Movement Quality