By Patrick McHenry

Purpose: To compare the difference between speed and agility movement patterns

Equipment / supplies: Stop watch, cones, tape measure, paper & pencil Vocabulary: Speed, agility, acceleration, deceleration
Discussion: In sports & activities movement can be forward, backward, lateral or diagonal. Changing from one direction to another requires deceleration, changing direction then acceleration. In this activity, you will learn about agility vs. speed. You will run 20 yards as fast as you can three different ways.


STEP 1: Measure off 20 yards placing a cone at the starting and finish line. After the students have warm-up properly, they will run two 20 yard sprints. Record their times.

STEP2: Measure off 10 yards placing a cone for the starting and finish line. The students will run 10 yards, touch the line with their foot then turn and run back. Record the time it takes them to run down and back.

STEP 3: Measure off 5 yards and place a cone so you have one at 5 yards and one at 10 yards. (See diagram) Starting at the 5 yard cone the student will face you, turn to the right, run to the cone, touch the line with their foot. They will then run 10 yards to the cone, touch the line with their foot and run back 5 yards. (SEE diagram).


  1. Which time was the fastest? Why
  2. Which time was the second fastest? Why?
  3. All three runs cover the same distance yet the times were different, why?
  4. Why is the 5-10-5 a good test of agility?
  5. How could you change the 5-10-5 to make the time faster?
  6. Does the order of the runs make a difference?