Leg Exercises

NEED FOR SPEED

You don't outrun a guy who runs a 40-yard-dash in 4.45 seconds. And that's

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NEED FOR SPEED

>> For web-exclusive images from our 2008 NFL Combine shoot, click here.

Lower-body lifting and abdominal and core work is done on Monday, Wednesday and Friday mornings. This is a sample "moderately heavy" Friday workout designed to develop power and strength in the legs and core. Such workouts, in addition to speed training performed immediately afterward, helped DaJuan Morgan shave two-tenths of a second off his 40-yard-dash time while adding 10 pounds of lean mass to his frame.

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Exercise				Sets 	Reps
Abdominal/Core Exercises (no rest between sets)
Back Extension			        1	25—30
Oblique Crunch (right side)		1	25—30
Oblique Crunch (left side)		1	25—30
Reverse Back Extension		        1	25—30

Lower-Body Warm-Up (no rest between sets)
Bodyweight Squat			1	6
Dynamic Hamstring Stretch		1	6
 	(toe touches)	
Bodyweight Lunge			1	6

Working Sets (roughly two minutes of rest between sets)
Isometric Half-Squat Hold¹		3	10 seconds
Deadlift²				5	2 
— superset with —
Sumo Squat to				5	4—6
   Hamstring Stretch³
Isometric Half-Squat Hold¹		3	10 seconds
Romanian Deadlift			5	24 
Reverse Hamstring Curl		        5	24 
   (partner assisted)

¹ Performed on a Power Plate, an apparatus with a vibrating surface. (Other tools can be used to mimic a Power Plate, such as a BOSU or other unstable surface.) The half-squat position (knees bent roughly 45 degrees) is held for 10 seconds, with 10 seconds of rest between each hold. Do this three times.

² Rubber bands attached from floor level to the ends of the bar are often used to increase resistance as the weight is lifted.

³ Standing with feet shoulder-width apart, begin by grasping your toes with your legs extended (hamstring stretch). From there, squat down with your legs outside your arms until your glutes nearly touch the floor, keeping your chest up and back flat. Reverse the motion back to the hamstring stretch position.

4 Each rep focuses on the negative, where the weight/torso is lowered at a six-second count.

SNAPSHOT - DaJUAN MORGAN
Position: Free safety
College: North Carolina State
Height: 6'
Weight: before Combine training, 196 pounds; after, 206 pounds
Bodyfat: before Combine training, 6.9%; after, 5.7%
40-yard dash at NFL Combine: 4.45 seconds
Bench press reps with 225 pounds: before Combine training, 11; after, 21 Drafted: 3rd round, 82nd pick overall, Kansas City Chiefs

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