Ideally, you want to develop the habits of maintaining a playing height of 6 to 12 inches below your normal standing height. At a minimum of 6 inches below your standing height, the bungee cord tension should begin to loosen and slack. You may want to start training in the A.P. Belt with the cord rather loose, until you get more accustomed to training in the belt. Once you gain the confidence that you can move and hit with your belt on, it is time to shorten the length of the cord to regulate the optimum training height of 6 to 12 inches below standing height.
We recommend you limit your time training in the A.P. Belt to 30 minutes of intense, productive work per day. If you are up to the challenge and want more, you can safely train in the morning for 30 minutes and repeat the session in the afternoon. This will help accelerate the habit development. It really depends on how much movement is involved in your daily session. If you are rallying with another player, hitting against a backboard, you may extend your session longer than 30 minutes. Just remember, this program is all about high quality repetition for habit building and working as productively in each interval as possible.
We certainly encourage that you continue the program beyond 30 days. Depending on your skill level, you may need to repeat certain aspects of the program over and over to engrain the new techniques. You may just want to wear the belt as you practice in lieu of following the structured program past 30 days. Top players who hae developed the techniques often continue to include the belt in their practice, to reinforce technique efficiency.
Not only is A.P. Belt training safe, it is considered one of the best ways to rehabilitate many lower body injuries, strengthening the muscles that support the knees. When your knees are bent, there’s less stress on the joints of the body.
Players as young as 6 years old have safely trained in an A.P. Belt. Since they are merely feeling their own body weight, there’s no health risk. We don’t encourage interval training use until players have reached adolescence stage of development. However, they can wear it during practice and lessons to assist in the development of their athletic foundation qualities and more efficient movement.
We recommend wearing the belt below the waist, around the hips, similar to a western holster. You don’t need it to be a very tight fit. As long as the belt is not so loose that it slips over the hips when training, then it is tight enough.
When the player is between the range of 6 to 12 inches below standing height, the cord should not have any pull down tension. Warning: We discourage having the cord too loose where there’s little to no pull down tension when at standing height. It can create excess loose slack in the cord that could possibly cause an accident during play.