Peyton Manning became a Super Bowl winning quarterback (again) at the age of 40 – even though he missed several weeks due to a foot injury. Do you ever wonder what the pros do to get in shape for a season of football or baseball? We have the answers!


The exercises that Peyton Manning uses can be done at a gym, and can also be done at home with free weights, a bungee cord, a rope ladder and a medicine ball. A medicine ball is a large, heavy solid ball which can be thrown, caught or lifted for exercise. It is 12-14 inches in diameter.Manning’s exercises combine core, speed, strength and flexibility. Here’s his plan, which you can use for your fitness efforts.

CORE – do this first
  • Seated overhead medicine ball throws -1 set x 15 reps
  • Partner medicine ball rotation throws - 1 set x 8 reps each side
  • Lateral partner medicine ball rotation throws - 1 set x 8 reps each side
  • Medicine ball toe touches - 1 set x 15 reps
  • Russian twist - 1 set x 10 reps each side. To do a Russian twist you lie down on the floor placing your feet either under something that will not move or by having a partner hold them. Your legs should be bent at the knees. Elevate your upper body so that it creates an imaginary V-shape with your thighs. Grab a medicine ball or a weight and twist your body completely from side to side, while keeping your legs in one place.


    These are the basic leg stretches and arms stretches that you know you’re supposed to be doing! Manning brings each stretch to a point of slight tension then holds it for 15 seconds. He makes sure to perform directional stretches on both sides. By increasing your range of motion, your performance may be enhanced and the risk of injury reduced.

    • Reactive tennis ball shuffle– 3 sets x 15 seconds. In this exercise, a partner tosses a ground ball a short distance and the receiver must stay in a crouched position and shuffle to the left or the right to retrieve the tennis ball and toss it back.
    • Mini hurdle shuffle– 4 reps x 5 changes of direction. This is exactly what it sounds like. Short little hurdles (6 inches) are set up on the ground and the exercise involves going over the hurdle with one foot and shuffle to the side to advance to the next hurdle. Google it – it’s harder to describe than it is to execute.
    • Speed ladder- 2 sets. A speed ladder is essentially a ladder lying on the ground. You can buy one, or substitute a rope ladder, or make your own with rope and small diameter PVC tubing. One ladder section is a ‘box’.
    • Straight run: one foot – one foot in each box
    • Straight run: two feet – two feet in each box
    • Hop scotch – in hopping fashion, land both feet simultaneously in each box, then both feet simultaneously outside each box
    • For a second set, perform the drill in every other box


    • Dumbbell bench press – 4 sets x 6 reps
    • Back hyperextensions – 3 sets x 8-10 reps
    • Triceps pushdown drop set - 2 sets x 10+10+10 dropping weight 10-15 pounds each time with no rest in between
    • Hamstring curl with single-leg negative – 2 sets x 5 reps each leg.
    • Lie on hamstring curl machine with legs locked under the pad
    • Explosively contract hamstrings by curling both heels to butt
    • With right leg only, lower weight with control until leg is straight
    • Repeat for specified reps and then perform with the other leg

    Manning does supersets of the strength training exercises. A superset is when one set of an exercise is performed directly after a set of a different exercise without a rest between them. Once each superset is complete, then rest for one and a half to two minutes to recover.

    Then – go win a Super Bowl!


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