As a Physical Education Teacher and Coach I am always looking for fun and creative ways to implement exercise into children's daily routine. Today I tried out 4 dynamite exercises on my students that all incorporated the use of an old tire. During these exercises kids were engaged, smiling, and anticipating their turn. Not only did these kids love the exercises, but they were able to learn drills that promote agility, power, speed, core strength, and overall fitness. Here are the 4 drills that I had these athletes in grades 3-8 perform.
Students start on the ground, upon hearing the whistle they step up onto the tire with the right foot, then the left. After both feet hit, the right foot goes back down to the floor followed by the left. The feet are going up, up, down, down, up, up etc. as fast as they can for 20 seconds. As students does this quick step motion they work their way around the tire. A great variation of this drill includes changing which direction they are going (clockwise vs. counterclockwise) each time they hear a whistle. A great drill for speed and agility.
Jump In, Jump Out Students start off by facing the tire, on the whistle they hop into the center, and then proceed to hop out on the opposite side. As kids hop out of the tire they attempt a 180 degree spin so that upon landing they are facing the tire again. They repeat this process as quickly as possible for 20 seconds. This is another fantastic drill for speed and agility.
North/West/South/East Plank The following is an effective way to engage the core and in addition work on power and quickness. Athlete starts off in plank position (like the top of a push-up) with hands on top of the tire. Feet are pointed to the north. Teacher calls out a new direction and student immediately arranges their body so their feet now point that way. Teacher yells out another direction, student again adjusts feet to point in that new direction. It is important students keep that great plank form, arms and back remain straight. For advanced students, not only does teacher call out directional changes, but adds the push-up command as well.
Flip It, Jump It, Run around It No doubt this drill was a student favorite as they begged to do the drill again! To perform drill, student starts off standing behind tire, upon hearing the start signal they flip the tire by bending knees, placing hands under the tire and aggressively turning it over. Once the tire is flipped, students jump into the center, and then again jump forward outside the tire. When they are outside the tire they quickly run back around to the front and flip it again, and repeat process. It is super fun for these kids to see how far they can get in only 30 seconds. Generally most kids travel anywhere from 20-40 feet during the 3o second interval. This drill promotes explosiveness, powers, and speed!
Watching the kids that I teach everyday have so much fun exercising was a great experience. These kids appreciated the creativity of the drills and in addition these drills were a great reminder how much fun exercise can be. These kids worked at a very high intensity level performing these drills and by the time they were finished, no doubt they were "tired out."