Kneeling Acceleration Step Up

We do quite a bit of our acceleration from a one-knee-down start position to encourage drive through the rear leg. Therefore, after reading Bosch’s work and chatting to some strength and conditioning coaches, I thought we might try and replicate this movement as a step up. I am very cognizant that this may have already been done before and that I may not have seen it in action, but I am sure that if it has been done, I will be corrected and I ask this to occur. Also, can you give me a name for this movement? For now though, I will talk you through the following video.

Start Position

Stand slightly back from an elevated step box. You should be in a lead leg, flat foot position with the trailing leg kneeling at the heel of the lead leg. Make sure your legs are about hip width or slightly narrower and that the toes of the trailing kneeling leg are turned under position.

Movement

From this starting position, transfer most of your weight onto the lead leg whilst keeping the hips square. Drive the kneeling rear leg up and through so that the foot lands on the box and you are now standing on the box with the lead leg. Now continuing the movement, you drive the previously kneeling leg up so that the knee is past parallel to the ground. From there, reverse the movement (controlled) back to the original starting position. Repeat for the desired number of reps and then change legs to complete the set. You may rest in between legs.

Variations

There are many variations of this movement, although only two are shown in the video. For variety and progressions you may do any or all of the following:

  • Increase or decrease the height of the box
  • Hold a bar in the overhead squat, front squat, or back squat position
  • Hold dumbbells or kettlebells in your hands

I hope this provides another variation of single-leg/step up movements for your “exercise tool box,” and that the athletes you train gain a performance advantage by using it.

 

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About the Author

Ashley Jones is a rugby strength and conditioning coach who has worked with the elite of the game, having been employed by the Crusaders (Super XV competition), New Zealand All Blacks, and the Australian Wallabies over the last decade. He has been awarded an honorary position at Bond University in Australia as an Adjunct Assistant Professor. Ashley has worked in the sports physical performance conditioning and fitness industries since 1978 and has worked in three professional sports (basketball, rugby league, and rugby union) across three countries (New Zealand, Australia, and Japan).