Racquetball & Running Help Me Cross-Train
For the past 20 years, I have been playing racquetball. In fact they never thought I was a runner, always wanted to play sports. During the last two years I have been running a lot more lately, and the extra running has definitely helped my racquetball game. You would think that endurance is the number one thing that it helps, and it does. But I’m finding that better hip movements and flexibility is also helping my game. Racquetball does have a lot of lateral movements and requires strong ankles and core leg strength. With running, your whole body gets a workout, and it’s not just your legs or your hips, even your arms and shoulders start to tone up.
It’s also a great way to mentally train. Running requires a lot of small winds, and it’s hard to run for long distances without giving up. Just like in racquetball, you find yourself in positions where you need to be mentally strong, in order to finish a game or come from behind and win. Running has definitely helped me be more aware of my mental game for racquetball, and he’s it has even helped me prepare for being in that last one tenth of a mile and finishing strong.
The nature of racquetball is a lot of quick starts, with bursts of energy. It’s quite a bit different than running, where are you are trying to sustain for a long-distance at a steady Pace. The juxtaposition of the two is a fun way to train, as a challenges you to be strong in short amount of time, versus long amounts of time.
During our high school racquetball practice, over the last two to three weeks we have been using a skill ladder, to work on foot movement. While this isn’t running, it definitely is helping my own racquetball game, and helps with running coordination. There is a lot of crossover between running and Racquetball, both physical and mental. If you are looking for a good way to train, consider matching up both as a fun way to add in a new sport, and a cross training tool for that new sport.