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Speed and Agility in PE: 16 Engaging Speed and Agility Activities and Games for Physical Education

Incorporating speed and agility drills and activities into your physical education curriculum is an effective way to help students improve their overall fitness. Speed and agility movement experiences can be an exciting way to get your classes moving, as they are perfect for warm-ups, circuits, relays, games and stations. Intentionally incorporating these skill-related fitness components into your routine is a great way to help students practice their forward, backward and lateral quickness while also working on their full-body coordination. Not only is speed and agility movement beneficial to physical health, but it can also assist students in developing teamwork and communication skills when they collaborate with each other while engaging in the activity.



This blog post will explore the advantages of incorporating speed and agility activities and movements into your physical education lessons. By exploring the importance of speed and agility, I will explain why these skills are valuable for all students. We'll see that not only are they important for physical education classes, but they are also advantageous to any extracurricular sports activities or other movement pursuits outside of school. Additionally, I'm excited to share with you the best strategies for adding agility and speed activities into your lessons, and give you 16 fun and engaging speed and agility activities for your physical education classes.

 

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What is the definition of speed?


Speed can be defined as the amount of time it takes the body to perform specific tasks.


Speed is a skill-related component of fitness. It measures how quickly an person can move from one point to another. Speed is a crucial physical skill for many sports and activities, as it helps people become more efficient with their movements and allows them to complete tasks in a shorter amount of time. Speed development requires a combination of strength, coordination and agility. Some examples of speed building activities include sprinting, biking, running drills, plyometrics and jumping exercises.


Speed Activities and Movements

 

What is the definition of agility?


Agility can be defined as the ability to rapidly and accurately change the direction of the whole body in space.

Agility is a skill-related component of fitness. It is considered a physical skill that enables an individual to quickly and accurately adjust their body's position in order to adapt to changing circumstances. This skill is far more complex than speed, as it relies heavily on coordination, balance, power and speed combined. Agility drills require athletes to move quickly and efficiently through multiple directions while maintaining control of their bodies at all times. Some examples of agility activities include ladder drills, cone drills and shuttle runs.



 

Why Incorporate speed and agility Into your PE curriculum?

Speed and agility are two of the most important physical attributes to work on in a PE class. For example, speed plays a massive role in sports such as track and field, football, soccer, lacrosse, and basketball. PE Lessons or outside training sessions that can help youth athletes develop speed can help them become more efficient in their movements and gain an edge in their sports or extracurriculars. An increase foot speed can give them an edge on the playing field or court that could potentially lead to heightened success.

Likewise, agility is very useful for changing direction quickly and reacting to an opponent's movements in a split second. People with proficient agility have the potential to outmaneuver their opponents for positions on the playing field, creating scoring opportunities for themselves or their teammates. Agility training exercises are proven to increase participants forward, backward and lateral quickness & reaction time.


Pics by Darcy Winkelman @TigerPEFitKids

Improving speed and agility is an important part of becoming physically literate and it's something that any student can achieve with determination and focus. Speed and agility for PE train neuromuscular skills necessary for athleticism, such as foot coordination and balance. These activities also increase explosive speed and agility efficiency. Additionally, some skills learned from speed and agility in PE or through training programs can be transferred over to everyday life tasks.


 

Does implementing speed and agility activities meet required standards?


To meet the requirements of SHAPE America Standard 3, which requires individuals to demonstrate their capacity for a healthy level of physical activity and fitness, adding speed and agility stations in PE is essential. By doing so, students will learn how to use exercise for their own health and skill development, as well as be able to recognize the importance of physical activity in order to maintain a healthy lifestyle.


 

Tips for implementing speed and agility activities in PE


1. Plan ahead and be prepared.

Speed and agility drills and stations activities can be easily incorporated into PE if you plan ahead and are prepared. Make sure you have the necessary equipment and space, and that you know what you want to do. Sketch out a plan for your gym or field and make sure you keep any lines to a minimum.


Pic by Brian Hull @BrianHullPE


2. Start with a warm-up.

As with any physical activity, it’s important to start with a warm-up such as high knee drills or lateral plyometric jumps. This will help get your students’ heart rates up and prepare their muscles for the agility training exercise movements to come.

3. Incorporate a variety of activities in a station or circuit format.

To keep things interesting, make sure to incorporate a variety of speed and agility movements and activities into your speed and agility lesson(s). This could include sprints, shuttle runs, cone drills, dot jumps, and more.


Pic by Mike Bohanon Mike Bohannon @mbohannon4


4. Make it fun!

Remember that speed and agility activities should be fun for your students. If they’re not enjoying themselves, they’re not going to get the most out of the activities. Encourage students to better their own times and not be overly concerned with what others are accomplishing.

5. Give clear instructions, monitor and provide feedback during movement times.

When incorporating speed and agility activities into PE, it’s important to give clear instructions. This will ensure that your students understand what they need to do and can perform the activities safely. Walk around to monitor behavior and ensure students are "on task" as they go through the stations. Offer corrective and encouraging feedback when it is appropriate, especially working with younger athletes.



6. Demonstrate the activity yourself or have a capable student do it.

If possible, demonstrate the activity yourself (or use a model student) before asking your students to do it. This will help them understand what they need to do and give them a better idea of how the activity should be performed.

7. Encourage effort over perfection.

It’s important to encourage effort over perfection when incorporating speed and agility activities into PE. The goal is for your students to try their best, not to be perfect!



8. Have patience!

Finally, have patience! Speed and agility activities can be challenging, so it’s important to give your students time to learn and improve at their own pace. Encourage them to keep trying, and celebrate progress rather than perfection.


 

16 Engaging Ideas for Incorporating Agility and Speed Stations in PE


If you're searching for ways to make your students' learning more stimulating and interactive, then these 16 natural body weight, speed and agility activities are for you! Transform your learning space into a dynamic and engaging environment with these engaging and fun activities. Students can work by themselves, with partners, or in small groups at any of the following highlighted stations to complete the assigned tasks. For a fun game, place stopwatches at the stations for activities that require timing - students can then time each other to see who can do the tasks quicker.



Agility Stations (see visuals for reference)


Speed and Agility Indoor Stations


1- Three Cone Shuffle

  • Start behind cone number 2 and slide step or grapevine step sideways to and around cone number 3.

  • Continue left and in front of cone 2.

  • Keep moving left to and around cone number 1.

  • Alternate your lead leg on each straight-away.


Agility Stations and Activities for PE

2- NFL Combine Drill

  • Start the drill at cone 1 in an athletic position.

  • Run to cone 2 and quickly turn back and run to cone 1.

  • Turn quickly and run around cone 2 and head to cone 3.

  • Go around the inside of cone 3 and head back to cone 2.

  • Go around the outside of 2 and finish the drill at cone 1.


3- Beanbag Snatch

  • Run from the start line and drop off one beanbag on spot #1.

  • Run back and get the 2nd beanbag and run it to the spot #2 .

  • Repeat with the 3rd.

  • Then run go back and get them in the same order.


Agility Stations and Activities for PE

4- Turn and Sprint

  • Start at cone 1 in an “athletic stance.”

  • A. Run Forward to cone 2.

  • B. Turn quickly and run to cone 3.

  • C. Turn and sprint past cone 2.



5- Four Corner Drill

  • Start at cone 1- Run Forward to cone 2.

  • Slide step facing out to cone 3

  • Back pedal to cone

  • 4.Grapevine step back to cone 1.


Agility Stations and Activities for PE

6- Two Foot Dot Jumps

  • Start with both your feet on both A and B.

  • Jump to C with both feet.

  • Jump with both feet to- D – E – C – A – B.

  • Repeat the sequence.



7- Figure 8 Run

  • Start at cone 1.

  • Run forward to cone 2.

  • Back pedal around cones 3 and 4 .

  • Run forward past cone 1 to cone 5.

  • Back pedal around cones 6 and 7.

  • Run forward to the start/finish area.


Agility Stations and Activities for PE

8- Oval Cone Drill

  • Start at cone 1 in an athletic stance.

  • Backpedal back and around cone 2.

  • Accelerate and sprint to cone 1.

  • Perform the task 5 to 8 times in a row


The agility task card visuals depicted above can be found at Cap'n Pete's Power PE site located here


 


2- Speed Stations (see visuals for reference)


Speed and Agility- Outdoor Obstacle Course


9- Obstacle Course

  • Run around the outside of a hula hoop.

  • Leap over a pool noodle or hurdle.

  • Jump rope 3 times.

  • Run around the end cone and back to the start.


Speed Stations and Activities for PE

10- Hoop Step Run

  • Start at a con or polyspot.

  • Run through a set of hoops.

  • Put 1 foot in each hoop as your travel to the end.

  • Repeat 5 to 10 times.


11- Run and Weave

  • Start at a polyspot or line.

  • Run with a football, weaving in and out of a set of cones.

  • Move quickly but keep your body under control as you run.

  • Time your runs and try to beat your record.


Speed Stations and Activities for PE

12- Spin and Run

  • Rotate a hula hoop like a spinning top.

  • Run and touch the closest wall before the hoop stops spinning.

  • Spin first, then run.

  • Vary your distance from the wall.l.



13- Run and Hurdle

  • Start at a line or polyspot.

  • Run and jump over the hurdles in your path.

  • Return up the side and back to the start.

  • Repeat.


Speed Stations and Activities for PE

14- Circle the Hoops

  • Start at a poly spot or line.

  • Wind your way through a line of hula hoops, running around each one.

  • Circle each hoop and go around the end cone.

  • Run straight back to the start line.


15- Beachball Pickup

  • Start at a cone or line.

  • Run with a beach ball (or tennis ball) down to a hula hoop.

  • Drop it off and run back to the cone.

  • Go back and get the beachball.

  • Repeat the process.


Speed Stations and Activities for PE

16- Scoot and Carry

  • Start at a polyspot or line.

  • Ride a scooter board, on your bottom or your stomach.

  • Go around a cone and back while you carry a football.

  • Time yourself and repeat to try and beat your record. .


The speed task card visuals depicted above can be found at Cap'n Pete's Power PE site located here


 

Final Thoughts


Speed and agility should be a key component of any physical education curriculum. Incorporating age appropriate fun and engaging speed and agility activities into your classes will help keep your students motivated to stay active while developing their coordination, balance, strength, acceleration, reaction time and quickness—all essential components of overall athleticism. With the right approach and dedication, speed and agility learning experiences can increase students’ physical performance and help them become better movers. This can lead to improved self-esteem, as they will be able to conquer challenging tasks more easily. Speed and agility drills are also a great way to keep students engaged in physical education and provide an exciting challenge that can keep them motivated to practice and improve.

This blog article highlighted 16 agility and speed station-based activities that can be practically incorporated into physical education classes. Incorporating these speed and agility movement experiences into your lessons has a ton of benefits, so it's definitely worth giving it a shot! Remember to warm up your students up before you start putting them through the fast and furious movements. Try creating your own stations and activities using cones, polyspots and any other equipment that help you design fun and challenging, fast-moving tasks. And most importantly, have fun!

 

Need resources?

Do you need some PE Component of Fitness Task Cards for your physical education program that includes detailed instructions and state-of-the-art graphics and visuals? If you do, Cap'n Pete's Power PE has you covered!


20 FREE Component of Fitness Task Cards

Fill in the form below to download 20 FREE Component of Fitness Task Cards. The set is a PDF digital download that includes two visuals (cards/signs) from the following sport stations sets: 1. Cardiovascular Endurance, 2. Flexibility, 3. Muscular Endurance, 4. Muscular Strength, 5. Agility, 6. Balance, 7. Coordination, 8. Power, 9. Reaction Time and 10. Speed.



They are simple to use and effective for learning PE fitness movements. Just print laminate, cut out and then place them in sections of your learning area for your students to use during physical education lessons.


 

If you're searching for a way to take your PE program to the next level, Cap'n Pete's PE Components of Fitness Task Card Series- 10 Set SUPER BUNDLE is the perfect resource for you! It is a combination of 10 of Cap’n Pete’s DYNAMIC, health-related and skill-related fitness-based task card sets for students to use in a variety of educational or community settings. You'll find over 240 engaging, self-guided fitness-based movement station signs/cards (24 stations per component) in this super bundle.


PE Components of Fitness 10-Set Super Bundle

You can download them from either of the following platforms: Cap'n Pete's Power PE Website or Teachers Pay Teachers- Cap'n Pete's TPT Store



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