How and Why To Use Sleds
Sleds are a great tool for training just about every physical quality there is, (obviously) depending on what you’re trying to achieve. Why? For a lot of reasons, but here are four of the big ones!
Four BIG reasons to train with SLEDS!
- They’re basically eccentric-less, which means they don’t cause much (if any) soreness. This can be valuable for recovery, in-season training, getting some extra lower body volume in (on top of your regular training) without much fatigue, deloading, etc.
- They’re as joint-friendly as it gets. There’s no axial loading, minimal impact, and they’re easy to manipulate from an angle standpoint (hip/knee flexion) to get a solid training effect while working around most lower body issues.
- They’re a great conditioning tool that can be scaled on a ton of levels and used in a handful of ways to deliver just about any type of energy system challenge, and with a low(er) learning curve than most other options.
- (Probably) best of all, sleds are as versatile it gets, not just conditioning/puke tools as all our coaches led us to believe…
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How to use Sleds:
• For strength: packing on the plates and pushing, pulling, and dragging heavy sleds for 10-15y or 20-30 steps can be a great way to build single-leg strength and/or power at specific joint angles.
• For hypertrophy: doing heavy pushes (posterior chain) and reverse drags (quads) for, say, 45-60s at a time can be a great way to ramp up metabolic stress with minimal joint/systemic stress.
• For speed and power: heavy pushes/marches are like a “sport-specific” leg press at acceleration-ish angles (think: wall drives for cool kids), while sled sprints are like the horizontal equivalent of Olympic lifting (cc: @michaelboyle1959). Upper body exercises like explosive rows and “throws” can be goodies for power, too.
🎯 P.S. Two other options that could fit into a couple of these categories are lateral pushes and rope pulls