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5 At-Home Tests

to Find and Destroy


Your Weaknesses
Speed training programs are demanding and intense. Diving right into one without first
assessing your bodys strength and mobility can limit the improvements youll makeor worse,
put you at risk for potential injuries.

The good news? Making that assessment, and identifying key areas to improve, is a lot easier
than you think.

Take your mobility, for example. Although lacking a full range of motion limits your ability to
perform exercises with proper form, once you identify a movement impairment you can address
it through simple stretches, dynamic moves or focused foam rolling.

As for strength, you can make a lot of improvements just by developing a stronger core. In this
booklet, youll find an easy way to test the mightiness of your midsectionand then find moves
to develop more core strength.

That core test begins on the next page. Youll find four more self-tests you can easily perform at
home on the pages after that. Try them today to see if there are any needs you should address in
your body.

1 5 AT-HOME TESTS TO FIND AND DESTROY YOUR WEAKNESSES


TEST 1: Core Strength
TEST IT WITH: Push-Up Planks
Assume a high push-up position
and have a partner place a PVC
pipe so that its in contact with
the back of your head, middle
of your shoulder blades and
butt. Hold the position for 60
seconds. If any of those three
points lose contact with the
PVC pipe, you need to strength-
en your core.

FIX IT WITH: Pin Push-Ups


Position a barbell on a squat
rack at hip height. Grasp the
barbell with a slightly-wider-
than-shoulder-width grip and
assume an angled push-up
position. Perform 3 sets of 10.

2 5 AT-HOME TESTS TO FIND AND DESTROY YOUR WEAKNESSES


TEST 2: Hip Mobility
TEST IT WITH: Prisoner Squats
Stand with your feet shoul-
der-width apart and turned slight-
ly out. Clasp your hands behind
your head and sit back until your
thighs are slightly below parallel
with the ground. Extend at your
hips and knees to stand up. If you
cant get low enough, your knees
collapse inward, or your heels rise
off the ground, you get an F in
hip mobility.

FIX IT WITH: Plate Squats


Perform Squats while holding a
10-pound plate with your arms
extended in front of your chest.
Make sure your thighs reach
slightly below parallel. Perform 3
sets of 10 reps.

3 5 AT-HOME TESTS TO FIND AND DESTROY YOUR WEAKNESSES


TEST 3: Back Mobility
TEST IT WITH: Standing Shoulder Flexion
Stand with your head, back and heels
against a wall, arms at your sides with
palms facing in. Lift your arms overhead
and touch the wall with your thumbs, keep-
ing your arms straight. If your lower back
arches, you flunk.

FIX IT WITH: Back-to-Wall Shoulder Flexion


Stand with feet hip-width apart about six
inches away from the wall and your back
against the wall. Extend your arms in front of
your chest with your palms facing down. Raise
your arms overhead, stopping if your lower
back arches. Do 3 sets of 10 reps during your
warm-up.

4 5 AT-HOME TESTS TO FIND AND DESTROY YOUR WEAKNESSES


TEST 4: Ankle Mobility
TEST IT WITH: Ankle Dorsiflexion
Assume a half-kneeling position
with your forward foot four to five
inches away from a wall. Place your
hands on the wall at shoulder level.
Lean forward and touch the wall
with your knee, keeping your heel
on the ground. Your ankles are too
tight if you cant touch your knee to
the wall without your heel rising off
the ground.

FIX IT WITH: Calf and Foot


Self-Myofascial Release
Use a foam roller to work tender
spots in your calf. Try a tennis ball
on your feet and heels. Roll each
spot for about 30 seconds.

5 5 AT-HOME TESTS TO FIND AND DESTROY YOUR WEAKNESSES


TEST 5: Hamstring Flexibility
TEST IT WITH: Toe Touches
Hamstring flexibility is essential
for performing Deadlifts and Olym-
pic lifts. To see if your strings are
supple enough, stand with your
feet together, then bend over and
touch your toes. If you cant touch
your toes or your back rounds
when you do, time to get to work.

FIX IT WITH: Leg Lowering Pattern


Lie on your back with both legs
lifted in the air above your hips.
Place a resistance band around one
foot, then lower your opposite leg
as far as possible, keeping your leg
straight and core tight. Perform 3
sets of 10 reps on each leg.

6 5 AT-HOME TESTS TO FIND AND DESTROY YOUR WEAKNESSES