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istvanBy Roy Istvan, Offensive Coordinator/Offensive Line Coach, Cornell University (NY)


Coach Istvan breaks down how he combines a ballistic warm up with essential OL drills in pre-practice. Learn more here...

 



By Roy Istvan,
Offensive Coordinator/Offensive Line Coach,
Cornell University (NY)
Twitter: @coachistvan

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Introduction:

istvanThe first 6 minutes of practice each day is dedicated to “Position Warm-Up”. It is a combination of ballistic stretch and technique work. This time is used to continuously develop skill sets that will be used in our everyday play selections as well as ready players for practice.

Warm-Up Details: This a simple, yet intricate progression. Here are the movements that are included:

Drill 1: Iso Drill

Purpose: Work flexibility in ankles, knees and hips.

Coaching Points: Keep ankles, knees and hips all in straight line.

Drill 2: Airplane Drill

Purpose: Teach players how to run off the ball.

Coaching Points: Head and shoulders over toes at the finish.

Drill 3: Duck Walk On Air

Purpose: Teach Duck Demeanor (insteps, posture, profile).

Coaching Points: Play with two feet on the ground. Opposite arm moves the opposite knee.

Drill 4: Med Ball Punch

Purpose: Bring hands from low to high.

Coaching Points: Learn to strike with low hips.

Drill 5: Duck Walk to Med Ball Punch

Purpose: How to address and strike a target on the move.

Coaching Points: Play with two feet on the ground. Opposite arm moves the opposite knee. Learn to strike with low hips. Accelerate to contact.

Drill 6: Skip Pull

Purpose: Emphasis on the shuffle in a gap scheme pull.

Coaching Points: “Stay low during shuffle, accelerate up field.”

Drill 7: J Pull

Purpose: Emphasize pointing the toe to the landmark and throwing the elbow.

Coaching Points: “Let me see your nose over your toes.”

Drill 8: Power Step

Purpose: Practice demeanor and body tilt. The emphasis is on the Post Foot.

Coaching Points: “Reach the lead foot, drag the trail foot.” Weight distribution should be in the opposite direction.

Drill 9: Kick Slide

Purpose: Practice demeanor and body tilt. The emphasis is on the Post Foot.

Coaching Points: “Reach the lead foot, drag the trail foot.” Weight distribution should be in the opposite direction.

Drill 10: Vertical Set

Purpose: Practice demeanor and emphasize stagger.

Coaching Points: “Get Shoulders Upright”

 

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Conclusion:

This position warm-up has become a valuable tool. It enhances young player technical growth and keeps older players fine-tuned. It is also a valuable time to talk with players about tips and reminders for practice. Thanks for reading and I hope this can be a help to you for this coming season.

 

Meet Coach Istvan: Roy Istvan is entering his 2nd season as the offensive coordinator and offensive line coach at Cornell University. In 24 seasons as a football coach – including 22 in college football – Roy Istvan has coached several players who have gone on to the professional ranks, including Super Bowl champion Joe Andruzzi and current NFL players LeSean McCoy (Philadelphia), and Jason Foster (Tampa Bay), as well as Tony Ugoh, who retired in 2012. In six seasons at Rhode Island, Roy Istvan consistently produced the strongest offensive lines in CAA Football. Year in and year out, his units were equal parts durable and effective. In 2013, Istvan’s line started the same five players in all 12 games the Rams played. The familiarity amongst the linemen showed, as Rhode Island allowed just 16 sacks in 12 games, the second fewest in CAA Football. Only Towson, which reached the national title game, allowed fewer sacks.

 

 

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