At-Home Strength Workout for Linemen

Chris Brainard

APE Strength
Bachelor of Science Kinesiology
CPPS, USC Certified, PRI

Chris Brainard of APE Strength takes you through an at-home workout of five exercises specifically for linemen.

At-Home Strength Workout For Linemen

Split Squat ISO Hold (3 sets x 20-30 seconds holds each side)

ISO (Isometric) holds are a great way for athletes to start building a solid foundation. A lot of time young athletes are rushed into performing the compound movements without any real foundation built. This is going to set up them for injury. Athletes need to first demonstrate that they can control their body weight and limbs before thrown into any serious lifting.

O-linemen are often put in tough positions since they’re reacting to an external stimulus a (defensive linemen). It’s important that we build strength in these tough positions so they’re not foreign on the field.

How to perform: 

  • Start in a standing position
  • Take one big step back with one leg
  • Drop that knee straight down until it’s 2-3 inches off the ground
  • Hold that position for 20-30 seconds each side 


Push-Up ISO Hold (3 sets x 20-30 second holds) 

The push-up iso hold is a fantastic exercise for athletes for a couple of reasons. One, it forces athletes to be in control of their body and 2, it’s great for building foundational strength in the upper body that will transfer to the field and reduce the risk of injury. 

How to perform: 

  • Assume your regular push-up position
  • Now, squeeze your glutes and brace your abs
  • Keeping the body in a straight line, lower yourself to 90 degrees
  • Hold this position for 20-30 seconds 


Push-Up Shoulder Tap (3 sets x 8 reps per side) 

The pushup shoulder tap is a great exercise for building upper body strength. Not only are we getting stronger with the push-up, but the shoulder tap is working on core and shoulder stabilization two important things for o-linemen. 

How to perform: 

  • Start in your standard push-up position
  • Squeeze your glutes and brace your abs
  • Do one full range pushup and then bring one hand to your opposite shoulder and pause, then do the opposite arm and that’s 1 rep
  • Repeat until you’ve completed 8 reps per side 


Tall Kneeling Plyo-pushup (3 sets x 5 reps) 

The tall kneeling plyo push-up is a great plyometric exercise for the upper body. We’re going to be working on punching speed and power. This is a good foundational exercise for o-linemen who can’t perform regular ply-pushups. 

How to perform: 

  • Start in a tall kneeling position (both knees on the ground and toes pulled towards shins)
  • Think tall and tight with your body. Squeeze your glutes and abs
  • From here, you’re going to fall into a push-up and then explode yourself back up
  • Repeat for 5 reps 


3-Way Lunge Circuit (3 sets x 5 reps each Front, Lateral, Backward) 

The 3 way lunge circuit is great because we’re building strength in multiple planes. The game is not perfect. You never know what the defensive linemen is going to give you. You need to be able to move in different angles and be strong in those positions. 

How to perform: 

  • Start in your tall and tight position
  • Take a big step forward and lower your back knee a couple of inches off the ground
  • Drive through the ground and return to the start
  • Take a big step to the side. Focus on keeping your inside leg straight and foot flat. Drive through the ground and return to the start
  • Take a big step backward and lower back knee a couple of inches off the ground
  • Drive through the front foot and return to the start.
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