Aug 27, 2018
Flywheel Training & Eccentric Overload

An Overlooked and Underutilized Method to Decrease Injury Potential and Improve Performance.

The goal of every training program is to decrease injury potential and improve performance. Additionally, rehabilitation and reconditioning programs strive to return the athlete to play in the quickest and safest manner possible, all the while reducing the likelihood of that athlete becoming reinjured.

All of the highly-regarded practitioners in training, rehab, and reconditioning will agree that while it’s important to train concentrically for strength, power, speed, and explosiveness, they will also tell you that a large emphasis must be placed upon the breaking or deceleration of this newly acquired strength, power, speed, and explosiveness – this is where training eccentrically comes into play.

In most team sports, players are required to repeatedly perform short, explosive, efforts such as accelerations and decelerations during change of direction 1.

In the quest for enhanced speed and maneuvering in multiple planes, strength and power training programs typically make use of weights. While offering constant concentric and eccentric load in exercises emphasizing vertical actions, they rarely encompass horizontal/lateral actions offering eccentric overload 2 .

Additionally, since strain injuries occur when muscle and tendon fibers cannot maintain the tension placed upon them and are disrupted 3 , a program lacking a significant emphasis on eccentric training exposes the athletes to a greater injury risk.

  • Using the VersaPulley handle, begin by taking a hand-over-hand grip
  • Find your end range-of-motion by facing sideways to the VersaPulley with your feet slightly wider than shoulder width and pivot your body away from the anchor (you should be standing up tall, arms fully extended in front of you, and torso rotating away from the anchor)
  • Next, allow rope to coil a couple times around the cone by pulling up to 3 times to get the flywheel spinning, increasing its speed and force each time, begin set on 3rd pull
  • As your torso rotates toward the VersaPulley, your hands should be extended in front with your weight loaded onto the inside foot
  • Pushing off of the inside foot, brace your trunk as you generate rotational force and pivot to stand with your body facing away from the pulley
  • You should be fully extended through the arms, trunk, and hips at the top of the motion
  • Finally, control the eccentric portion of the exercise by slowing the flywheel down back to your starting position and repeat for the programmed amount of reps

See VersaPulley products:

Article written by:

Brandon Marcello, PhD, CSCS, RSCC*E

Jennifer Reiner-Marcello, DC, CCSP, CSCS

The featured location photo is:

Gabriel Salinas B.S., CSCS, NSCA-CPT

OA Athletics


1. de Hoyo M, de la Torre A, Pradas F, et al. Effects of eccentric overload bout on change of direction and performance in soccer players. Int J Sports Med. 2015;36(4):308-314.

2. Tous-Fajardo J, Gonzalo-Skok O, Arjol-Serrano JL, Tesch P. Enhancing change-of-direction speed in soccer players by functional inertial eccentric overload and vibration training. Int J Sports Physiol Perform. 2016;11(1):66-73.

3. Roig M, O’Brien K, Kirk G, et al. The effects of eccentric versus concentric resistance training on muscle strength and mass in healthy adults: A systematic review with meta-analysis. Br J Sports Med. 2009;43(8):556-568.

4. Tesch PA, Ekberg A, Lindquist DM, Trieschmann JT. Muscle hypertrophy following 5-week resistance training using a non-gravity-dependent exercise system. Acta Physiol Scand. 2004;180(1):89-98.

5. Norrbrand L, Tous-Fajardo J, Vargas R, Tesch PA. Quadriceps muscle use in the flywheel and barbell squat. Aviat Space Environ Med. 2011;82(1):13-19.

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