Weight Sled

Use a weight sled to improve speed, power, and acceleration






One of the most versatile pieces of equipment you can have in your toolbox is a weight sled, preferably one with handles of different heights, that is capable of being pushed or pulled to get the desired specific training effect.


Training with sleds is a great way to condition the body through various movements, attachments, pulling, or pushing on a safe, durable surface, such as grass, turf, or dirt.


In addition to using the sleds for general conditioning, it is also possible to execute specific acceleration drills, using lower-to-mid height handles to simulate the acceleration position of a track start. Explosive starts drills can be performed for distances of 5-15 yards to focus in starting speed and acceleration.


The weight sled can also be pulled using a harness, a rope attached to a belt (weight belt works just fine), or any other attachment that will allow you to pull the sled without sacrificing running technique and without causing any jerking type movements that may increase your risk of getting hurt.


Sled pulls are typically best done with weights of up to 10% bodyweight, not including the weight of the sled. So, if an athlete weighs 250lbs, he could use 25lbs on the sled.


Again, weights are selected that will not negatively affect running mechanics or increase the athlete's risk of injury.


We recommend progressing from pulling drills using an empty sled to pulling drills adding weight, and then up to 10% of bodyweight. We have used up to 20-25% bodyweight, but only in special circumstances, and only when the athlete had progressed over several years to be able to handle that weight efficiently to get the desired training effect.


Pulling drills can be programmed in a variety of ways, ranging from 10 yard sprints to 40 or 50 yard sprints, with sufficient rest to allow for full recovery, especially if speed is the desired training effect. We typically recommend a 1:5 or 1:6 work to rest ratio, but will make adjustments if we begin to see variances in running times.


What this means is that if an athlete is performing 40 yard sprints pulling the sled, and the first 3 repetitions take 4.9 seconds, and the fourth repetition takes 5.4 seconds, and the fifth one takes 5.6 seconds, then we need to adjust the rest to allow for a longer recovery. If we adjust the rest and the sixth repetition takes longer than 5.2 seconds, then it is most likely that fatigue has begun to set in.


At this point, we usually stop the training since it is no longer beneficial to train for speed.


As you can see, a simple piece of equipment such as a weight sled can be used to produce both general and specific training outcomes. That is why we like to use them so much.


We also like the fact that they are ultra-portable, and can fit in the trunk of a car to be taken and used anywhere we need them. We like to use them as a football training sled, a hockey conditioning sled, an acceleration training sled, a power training sled, or simply for some good old fashioned sled training.


At Finish First Sports Performance, we like to use a resistance sled that is better known as a power sled. We also like to use a pure speed and acceleration sled for pulling drills and for pushing drills for the first 10-15 yards. You can also find sample exercises, sled workout routines, and sled drills on these pages, or in our exercise encyclopedia video library.

CLIENT TESTIMONIALS
Christian Hanson"Coach Jeremy Hoy and Finish First is one of if not the main reason I am where I am today. If it were not for his sport-specific training programs, I could only have dreamt of making it this far. Any athlete who has any aspirations of making it to the next level is foolish to not train with Finish First. Regardless of your current skill, going anywhere else to train is a waste of time, money and talent."
--Christian Hanson, NHL Boston Bruins/AHL Providence Bruins
Miss Pennsylvania America 2011, Juliann Sheldon "Training for the Miss America pageant included 6 weeks of intense training at Finish First Sports performance. Coach Jeremy Hoy put my physical endurance to the test and pushed me to my limit. In those intense weeks of physical preparation, I truly learned what It meant to be an athlete. Training at FFSP can help ANY pageant girl become an athlete - She will look and feel her very best. ..."
--Miss Pennsylvania America 2011, Juliann Sheldon
Matt Bartkowski with the Bruins "As you progress in hockey and aspire to get to higher levels, your off season training becomes increasingly important. Once I started training at Finish First I noticed a difference in my strength, speed, and power on and off the ice. There is no better place for a hockey player to train than Finish First. Where I am now in my career I can credit to Finish First, and I know continuing my training there will get me where I want to be."
--Matt Bartkowski, NHL Boston Bruins/AHL Providence Bruins
Miss Pennsylvania America 2010, Courtney Thomas "Working out at Finish First Sports Performance with Jeremy Hoy was by far the best workout experience I've ever had. I spent six weeks going to FFSP two and three times a day and each time I had a unique workout that helped me achieve the results I desired. Jeremy was always so encouraging and pushed me both physically and mentally to reach my full potential. I went to Miss America in the best shape of my life and felt so confident and prepared..."
--Miss Pennsylvania America 2010, Courtney Thomas
Brianne McLaughlin, Goaltender, USA Women's Olympic Ice Hockey Team "Finish First has helped me to perform at my best and to be in the best shape possible in order to compete at the highest level. Jeremy's motivational attitude and custom workouts allow me to get the most out of my training - which is geared towards making me a better hockey player AND stronger athlete. His specialized drills and exercises for goalies, and for improving my dynamic vision, have had an immediate transfer to what I need on the ice. ..."
--Brianne McLaughlin, Goaltender, USA Women's Olympic Ice Hockey Team
Miss Pennsylvania America 2009, Shannon Doyle "I spent six weeks at Finish First Sports Performance working intensely with Coach Hoy to prepare for the Miss America pageant. I worked out three times a day, every day! Coach Hoy pushed me harder than I ever could have imagined possible. When I felt defeated, he always had an inspirational story or quote to re-inspire me, and then he would push me harder. Jeremy saw an inner-strength and confidence in me even when I struggled to see it in myself. ..."
--Miss Pennsylvania America 2009, Shannon Doyle
Chris Kushneriuk, Professional Hockey Player for the Bakersfield Condors "Prior to training with Jeremy Hoy and the team at Finish First, one of the biggest knocks I received from coaches was my endurance. I would slowly wear down as the season went on, which would make me lose a step in a game where every inch is so important. Since I began my off-season training with Jeremy's programs in the summer of 09' this has no longer been an issue. ...Jeremy has made me a much more explosive and confident power forward. ..."
--Chris Kushneriuk, Professional Hockey Player for the Bakersfield Condors
Brock Meadows, Professional Hockey Player, Texas Brahmas "Jeremy Hoy and Finish First Sports Performance has by far been the best sport-specific training I've ever experienced. I've played for many teams and have had countless different trainers and training programs, and they weren't even close. The program is designed for me as a hockey player, to improve my performance on the ice. Hoy's program allowed me to stand out in hockey and move on to the next level. ..."
--Brock Meadows, Professional Hockey Player, Texas Brahmas
Elyse Healy, Top 10 Miss PA 2010 "Having competed at the local, state and national levels before coming to Jeremy, I always knew how I wanted to look but never got precisely the results I was striving for. With FFSP, I was able to SURPASS my expectations and become the strongest competitor I could be. Combined with expertise in training, nutrition and overall health, I thank Jeremy and his staff for making me both mentally and physically STRONG! ..."
--Elyse Healy, Top 10 Miss PA 2010
Shauna Rice, 2009 & 2010 Preliminary Swimsuit Winner and Top 5 Finish "I trained under Jeremy Hoy at Finish First Sports Performance in preparations for the 2009 and 2010 Miss Pennsylvania pageants. I am proud to say that I was a preliminary swimsuit award winner both years! Jeremy gives his full attention to his clients and creates their routines and diet plans specifically for them. Jeremy trained me in ways I have never experienced before. New exercises, new muscles, and new pains! ..."
--Shauna Rice, 2009 & 2010 Preliminary Swimsuit Winner and Top 5 Finish
Denny Urban, Professional Hockey Player, Reading Royals "Each and every year you need to make sure that you are in your top shape when heading into the season. With the customized training that Jeremy Hoy and Finish First gives you, you get into your top shape so you have that edge over the other people. I can credit Finish First and Jeremy Hoy for where I am now in my career and where I want to be. If you are serious about making it to the next level and want to gain that edge over the others then I recommend training with Jeremy Hoy and Finish First."
--Denny Urban, Professional Hockey Player, Reading Royals
Michael Houser, Goaltender, London Knights (OHL) "Jeremy and the coaches at Finish First Sports Performance have helped me prepare for each hockey season through intense hockey specific training. With the rigorous schedule of major junior hockey, my training experience at Finish First has helped me to stay strong and not wear down through the long season, and helped me to finish the year as strong and explosive as I started it."
--Michael Houser, Goaltender, London Knights (OHL)
OHL Player of the year 2011-12
CHL Goaltender of the year 2011-12
Theo 'Teddy' Ruth, NHL Columbus Blue Jackets/AHL Springfield Falcons "Even though I live and train in Chicago during the summer, I am able to stay in touch with Coach Hoy and get weekly programs that really help me prepare for the upcoming season."
--Theo "Teddy" Ruth, NHL Columbus Blue Jackets/AHL Springfield Falcons
Derek Schooley, NCAA Division 1 Men's Ice Hockey Head Coach "Jeremy Hoy knows hockey and hockey specific training. I have watched many elite players over the years train with him and they are always prepared, in good shape and ready to go when the season starts."
--Derek Schooley, NCAA Division 1 Men's Ice Hockey Head Coach
Anthony Noreen, Head Coach, Youngstown Phantoms USHL Ice Hockey Team "We pride ourselves on being the hardest working/best conditioned team in the USHL and Coach Hoy makes that possible. His knowledge, attention to detail, and no-nonsense approach to training pushes our players to their maximum potential. When players leave our program I have no doubt that they will bring with them the strength, power and conditioning to help them excel at the level. We have Jeremy to thank for that."
--Anthony Noreen, Head Coach, Youngstown Phantoms USHL Ice Hockey Team
Maeve Gallagher, 3-Sport College Athlete, MTV Made Celebrity "Training with Coach Hoy at Finish First not only helped me in my MTV Made pageant performance but also as a collegiate athlete -- it was the best training I've received in 20 years of being an athlete. Going into my pageant experience as an athlete I felt I had the advantage of the fitness and swim suit routine, but soon realized I was wrong... Coach Hoy provided me with a workout that not only got me in phenomenal pageant shape but also was still helping with my athletic career..."
--Maeve Gallagher, 3-Sport College Athlete, MTV Made Celebrity


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