James Harden’s Workout Explained By His Trainer | Train Like A Celebrity | Men’s Health

(intense music)
– What’s up guys, I’m Paul
Fabritz from PJF Performance.
Over the last four years my job has been
gettin’ James Harden
ready in the off season.
So he plays 82 plus games every year.
We gotta keep him durable,
resilient, and healthy.
But he’s also competing
for the MVP this year
so it’s not just about health,
it’s also about explosiveness,
it’s about his movements on the court.
So I’m gonna take you
through a typical workout.
Let’s do it.
(intense music)
I’m gonna take you through
one of his workouts.
We’re gonna go through his dynamic warmup.
I’m gonna show you the mobility
drills that I do with him,
the core activation, and
the full body stability.
Then we’re gonna get into some good stuff,
the more intense, higher
intensity nervous system work.
I got my trainer Cam.
He is gonna be
demonstrating the exercises.
Let’s do it.
(upbeat music)
So there’s a couple different
components of our warmup.
One, we’re tryna increase our body heat.
Two, we’re tryna stretch
out each major muscle group
that we’ll be training that day.
Three, we gotta get activated
and four, we gotta warm
up that nervous system.
So we gotta rev up that nervous system.
So our first one, Cam
is gonna go into a skip.
So high with the knees.
He’s pointing the toe up toward the head.
He’s slammin’ that ball
of the foot into the floor
and that heal is not
gonna touch the ground.
So our next one’s gonna
be our over-unders.
So you’re gonna see Cam goes
over with that left foot
and then under with that left foot.
He is flipping the hips so
we want that hip rotation.
Next one’s gonna be our hamstring stretch.
So he’s just gonna point
the toe up towards the head.
You’ll notice he’s on his heel.
That knee is straight and
he’s just swiping the floor.
His back is staying nice and flat.
Think about there’s a pencil
in between the shoulder blades.
You gotta hold on to that pencil
so that we’re not rounding the back.
He’s getting a great
hamstring stretch here.
Our next one is gonna be our
quad stretch with a lean.
So he’s gonna pull his
heel up towards his hips
and then from there
we’re gonna add a lean.
By getting the knee back behind his hip,
he actually gets a little
bit of a hip flexor stretch
instead of just our
traditional quad stretch.
So two birds in one stone on this one.
So our next one are
the Frankenstein kicks.
So this is just a dynamic
hamstring stretch.
So you’ll notice that he’s
keeping the knee straight
and he’s kicking across,
tyrna get that leg
nice and high so this
is a hamstring stretch
but now it’s a little more dynamic
and a little more elastic.
So our next one is the adductor
stretch, so the groin area.
So he’s gonna take two skips
out and he’s gonna go lateral,
keepin’ that left leg straight
as he goes to that right side.
Most common strain in basketball
and in many sports is that adductor.
So what we need to do is get it nice
and lengthened before we do
any workout or play a game.
All right so for our hip flexor stretch,
we’re still gonna go
with a double lateral.
So a little skip out, he’s
gonna land and he’s gonna rotate
towards that lead leg so now we’re getting
that hip flexor nice and loose
and then he pops back into that skip.
He’s going both sides so he’s getting
both hip flexors nice and warmed up.
For our hip mobility deep squat
what we’re gonna do is three high skips.
So he’s going high with the
right, high with the left,
high with the right, land and deep squat.
So we’re challenging the hip mobility.
Pretend like there’s a fence,
get that foot all the way over the fence.
Now on that landing I want
you to sit as low as you can.
I wanna see your chest.
I don’t wanna see you
collapse so we’re challenging
that hip mobility and we’re
challenging the ankle mobility,
one of the best
combination mobility drills
that we can add to our warmups.
(upbeat music)
Now for our quickline into the stick,
he’s gonna go over the
line as fast as he can.
Go ahead Cam, over the line.
And then when I say stick,
he’s gonna stick with that right leg.
That’s extremely important for basketball
because when we’re making cuts,
first we have to be on balance
before we redirect all that force.
That is the limiting factor
to your explosiveness
in your change of direction
is your full body stability.
(upbeat music)
So this is our eurostep stability.
It’s so important to have
that ability to not only
eurostep and create
separation, create distance,
but we gotta be able to stabilize,
otherwise we can’t be on
balance to finish the layup.
♪ Are you ready ♪
Okay so we like to start every workout
on a force-plate test.
So this shows me where
his nervous system is at.
If he’s over trained, his test
is gonna be bad for the day
but I have his data for every
day so if he’s jumping well
and he’s feeling good, then
we know we can push forward
with that intense workout.
So he’ll step on the force plates here.
Ready, go.
Land nice and soft, good.
And so now I can share the data with him
and so he put 4,000 newtons
of force in the ground
on the takeoff and he landed
with 2,100 newtons of force.
So we wanna actually decrease that landing
and land softer and so now I
can give him that objective
feedback and he knows how
he’s jumping and landing.
More importantly, I
know if he’s ready to go
for this intense workout.
Basketball is all about how
you interact with the ground.
So if I’m putting more force
in the ground I get further.
On my jumps if I put more force
in the ground, I jump higher.
Now when you look at injury prevention,
we want less force.
So all injuries are happening
on the lowering portion or on the landing.
So I want high force on the jump
and then I want low force on the landing.
Also, I can tell whether
he’s producing the force
with the right or left leg.
He had a 10% increase in his right leg
on the jump and on the landing.
So we actually wanna focus on balancing
the legs out for injury
prevention reasons.
(upbeat music)
So for the da Vinci
plank, he’s gonna set up
the cable at shoulder height,
he’s gonna step away
from the cable machine.
Now he’s just gonna lift
up this outside foot.
So we’re challenging the
stability through this left hip,
but this right oblique has to fire up.
If this right oblique relaxes,
he falls into what we
call lateral flection.
And so we gotta keep the
shoulders completely flat
and the shoulders directly over the hips.
So he’s squeezing with
that opposite oblique
and you gotta breath, we gotta relax
and find a way to brace
the core at the same time.
Great core exercise,
great full body stability.
When you look at basketball,
we take a lot of hits
to the side of the body.
If James is driving here
and he hits somebody,
if he’s weak, he goes
into lateral flection.
If he’s strong, he can maintain
his posture and finish.
(upbeat music)
All right so now we
have our weighted jumps.
So we could this with a trap bar
or if you don’t have a trap bar,
we could always just hold a
dumbbell between our legs.
There’s a lot of different
ways that we could add weight.
So we’re using the boxes
because on the way down
he can allow that box to absorb the weight
instead of sticking the landing
and having his knees
absorb all of that weight.
So we’re getting good explosive training
but it’s a little bit
less stress to the knees.
This is a just jump mat.
I’m calculating his vertical.
I don’t give him the amount of reps.
I just say you go and
as soon as he drops off
by more than 10%, we stop the set.
So right now he just did
three really good reps
but then on his fourth rep
he started getting tired,
he dropped down we stopped
the set then and there
because right now, we’re
after that nervous system
and we’re after the fast
switch muscle fibers.
The world has been doing
this wrong forever.
High rep jump training
is not where it’s at.
It’s all about explosive, quality reps.
Okay so weighted jumps.
So what we’re gonna do is set
up in our deadlift position
so our knees are right over the toes,
his hips are back, his
back is nice and flat.
Now from this position, he’s jumping
as high as he possibly can
and then he’s gonna hit that landing.
So get up, boom good.
We’re calculating his vertical.
That was 13.2.
Boom, that’s 16 inches.
Good, he’s going up, we keep going.
16 inches, good, let’s see
what you get on this one.
Boom rep, down to 14, we stop the set.
All right so we’re
gettin’ into place here.
We’re gonna do this on a box for now.
So he’s gonna lay back.
Notice how we’re offset here.
So by offsetting, now he’s
gotta fire up this glute
and fire up this oblique and
the core and then he’s going
with the traditional one arm bench press.
All right, so this is
your normal one arm bench,
it’s just we’re offset
because now he has to really
fire up that glute and this oblique.
So yes we’re getting chest,
yes we’re getting shoulder
and tricep, but now we’re
firing up the core and that hip.
When it comes to actually translating
from the weight room to the court,
we need that full body stability.
Now, if you are a young
athlete, we would probably go
a traditional dumbbell bench
press ’cause you still gotta
build some general strength and some size.
For athletes like James, they
have that strength and size.
Now it’s all about being functional
and being able to translate it
from the weight room to the court.
This is a great way to do that.
(upbeat music)
In basketball, single leg
strength is everything.
So we always say the game is
played on one leg at a time.
Meaning when you’re sliding,
you have one leg on the
ground at a given time.
When I’m sprinting or cutting,
I’m not cutting with both legs,
I’m cutting with one leg on the ground.
So from a performance enhancement
and an injury prevention
stand point, we gotta get very very strong
in that one leg stance.
So for our rear foot elevated split squat,
how we like to set it up,
ankle directly underneath the knee.
So with that stance we’re
gonna get a good amount
of that glute activation.
So now he’s just gonna grab the dumbbells.
We’re starting at 35 pounds
and from there we’re just
standing straight up, two
seconds on the way down.
He’s gonna tap that back knee to the pad
and explode up nice and fast.
So we’re really training that stance leg.
So that quad, that
glute, and the hamstring
are gettin’ a lot of work.
This is one of the best
ways that we can train
and really truly overload that lower body.
(upbeat music)
Okay so we’re gonna go
into an inverted row.
So we’re gonna use
rings, but you could use
a barbell if you would like to.
So we’re gonna elevate his feet
to make it a little bit more difficult
and get his body completely flat.
We do not want the hips to sag.
I gotta have him squeeze his glutes
so he stays flat all the way through
and then we just go into a row.
So he’s pulling his chest all the way up
towards those rings.
So he’s thinking about
pulling from the torso
and what that does is we actually train
those lats, we train the rhomboids,
those muscles in between
our shoulder blades,
back muscles are so important
for our overall performance
and our strength on the court.
Now basketball we do wear
a tank top year round,
so we do need some biceps.
This is one of the best
ways to build biceps.
Probably even better than bicep curls.
You always gotta have some sort of
inverted row in your program.
(upbeat music)
So after an intense workout,
we gotta get our recovery.
So I’m gonna have him lay down on his back
and I’m just gonna bring
his leg up 90 degrees
and then he’s just going up
and down with this other side.
So notice we don’t really do
too much static stretching.
I like to do it a little bit more dynamic
even after the workout
because that involves
muscle contraction and then
the muscle acts as a pump.
So it pumps out all that
lactic acid, all the bad stuff
that we don’t want and it
pumps in all the good nutrients
so we can begin that repair process.
‘Kay so this one’s more of a hip flexor.
You’re also gonna get
some shoulder mobility.
Hips forward, shoulders
back so that hip flexor’s
nice and long, hands together
and then he just leans.
So hands together, lean as far as we can
towards that lead leg.
He’s stretching out that right hip flexor
and then he brings it back and back down.
Notice he’s big with the shoulders.
So we’re getting some shoulder mobility,
some upper back mobility.
All right so for our 90-90 getups,
I want him 90 degrees
here, 90 degrees here
and then he’s just gonna roll to one side,
trying not to use his hands
and then he’s just gonna
come up to a half kneel
position, back down.
Don’t just fall down to the
floor, control it back down
and then back to the other side.
So we’re gettin’ some good internal,
external rotation at the hip.
So important for our mobility on the court
and as a cool down we’re
starting to pump everything
out of the glutes and we’re
gettin’ some good movements.
So even though most people
would od this in a warmup,
we actually like to do it in a cool down.
He would do three to five
repetitions on each side,
just one set here.
All right for our last one,
we’re just gonna go
kneeling ankle mobility.
So he’s gonna drive the knee
as far as he can over that toe
while he’s keeping that
heel down on the ground.
So we’re challenging that ankle mobility.
He rocks it back and we go forward,
hold for two seconds and rock back.
All right guys, thanks for
tuning in to our workout.
Whether it’s James Harden working out
trying to become the MVP
or just you trying to get
to the next level and be
the best version of you,
we gotta work hard, we gotta work smart,
we gotta work consistently.
Take care of your nutrition,
take care of your sleep.
You’re gonna see some good results.

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