The Champion Sports Speed & Agility ladder is designed to help you improve agility, coordination, foot speed, and balance. It features 20 adjustable slots that have a foam rubber backing to help reduce shifting and sliding on hardwood floors. It comes with a storage handle and a nylon carrying bag.
Slots are adjustable
10-yds long x 20-in wide
Includes a storage handle and a nylon carrying bag
Comments about Champion Sports Speed & Agility Ladder:
1) All of these ladders use webbing to connect the rungs, and some of them use webbing for the actual rungs as well. The rungs made out of webbing never lay completely flat and thereby increase the odds of the athlete getting their cleats caught up in them, resulting in, at best, bunching-up the ladder, and at worse, tripping the athlete. The ladders with the solid vinyl or ABS plastic rungs are far superior in terms of performance, as they lay completely flat and decrease the likelihood of tripping the athlete.
The Champion Agility Ladder utilizes what I assume is solid vinyl for their rungs, and they are 5 mm thick (around 7/32, just under a quarter of an inch). I have run 21 lacrosse players across them 3 times a practice, 3 practices a week, for the last 2 1/2 weeks, in temperatures in the mid 30's to low 40's. Two of my defensemen are in excess of 220 lbs. One is pushing 6'3"/240 and has absolutely no foot coordination; when he goes through the ladder he looks like a silver-back mountain guerrilla stomping fire ants to death on the jungle floor. There is no part of this ladder that he hasn't crushed at one time or the other. The vinyl rungs just flex down into the turf, wait for him to get off, and then let out an audible sigh of relief. If these rungs can take being flexed into the turf by 240 lbs defensemen wearing cleats in almost freezing temperatures and not break, they should last forever lying flat on a gym floor at room temperature.
2) The handle or carrying device is a great idea. Anyone that has worked with these ladders before knows that they tend to get tangled up in you bag like household extension cords. The additional time it takes to slide the device through the slot in the center of each rung in order to stack the rungs, is far less than the time wasted trying to untangle a ladder without one of these devices. When setting out the ladder, you simply walk backwards pulling off one rung at time and doling out the ladder in front of you…no knots, no tangles.
3) This ladder is touted as a "10 yard" ladder. Although it is not mentioned in the product specs, this is actually two ladders that snap together. If desired, they can be separated so that you can have two lines of players race each other through, or just run two lines at once to speed up that part of your practice.
1) The ladder is advertised as having "adjustable rungs"…why? That's more of a liability than a feature. When using the ladder, it's imperative to have the rungs square and evenly spaced, so the athletes going through them can develop a rhythm and ultimately increase their speed. To make matters worse, they are not only "adjustable", they don't stay where you adjusted them to, as the rungs slide far too easily back and forth along the web rails. Run your kids over it once, on turf at least, and it looks like something out of a Doctor Seuss book.
The solution is fairly simple. The ladder does at least have white marks on the black webbing and if the rungs are aligned with these marks, they will be square and evenly spaced. Align the rungs, and then using a drill with a 1/4 inch drill bit, drill through the rung and the web rail where they cross and secure them together with a pop rivet. A little time consuming, but well worth the effort (and far less then the time it would take to re-align the rungs every time you layed-out the ladder).
When drilling the hole, have a block of wood under the connection point that you are going to drill through. Place the ladder with the vinyl up and the webbing down and press down on the webbing in order to limit its movement. Drill through the vinyl rung first, through the webbing, and into the wood. If you attempt to drill though the web material first, or if you are not applying enough downward pressure on the webbing, the drill bit will snag the material and bunch-up. Also, make sure that all of the rivets are installed in the same direction, with the smooth end down and the nubby end up, so that if you want to use it on a gym floor you won't have to worry about tearing up the floor's surface with the rivets.
2) The carrying / storage device has a hole at the top and a clip that goes through to hole so as to keep the rungs from coming back of the device once stacked. Great idea, but the clip is way too small for my fingers to manipulate and has to be positioned in the exact manner in order to get it into and out of the hole on the device...seems to take forever to line it up. I replaced it with a spring loaded hitch pin for less than two bucks, which I can now install and remove in about 3 seconds.
The ladder is advertised as having some sort of foam rubber backing…mine didn't come with any, which is perfectly fine with me, as I'm sure it would not have lasted long in the conditions that I am using it in. Once it got wet enough for the adhesive to no longer be strong enough to keep the foam rubber in place, I'm sure that the residue it left behind would be more than strong enough to adhere to millions of those little rubber turf balls. Again, this would have been more of a liability for me than a feature.
FINAL ANALYSIS: I've used a lot of these over the years and this one is without a doubt one of the best I have worked with. The modifications I have suggested and neither expensive nor require a skilled tradesman to implement. I'm sure I will get plenty of use out of this ladder, until I leave it on the field one evening (never to be seen again), or someone "borrows" it out of the equipment shed, which seems to have been the fate of all the other ones I have used over the past twenty something years.
If you are still reading this, then you must be serious about buying an agility ladder...if so, this is the one you should but. Buy it.
Bottom Line Yes, I would recommend this to a friend