Race Dynamics Key Concept in Sprinting

This coming week I will release "Race Dynamics" a new book in the series of highly specialized "Key Concept" books. 

After participating in a few discussions on LinkedIn group talks this week I thought the following quote from the forums at charliefrancis.com would be helpful to many coaches and athletes reading.

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Forum Member Question

Is there a Silver Bullet for teaching Biomechanics & Technique?

Coach Ange's Answer

Form follows function. When asked about the ideal leg length, Abraham Lincoln said: "One that reaches from the hip to the ground!"

  1. Sprinting is an automatic action, controlled by the primitive hind brain, where almost any voluntary (forebrain) input is NEGATIVE.
  2. Ground support forces cannot be increased by any voluntary action DURING GROUND SUPPORT. They can be increased by corrective measures taken in advance of the ground support phase (if, in fact any are necessary). Such corrective measures must be MINIMAL, rehearsed well in advance, and made automatic to keep the action in the hind brain during competition.

Implication for coaches:
  1. Think twice and speak once. Never attempt to correct a technical issue that you think will correct itself through the development of greater strength.
  2. Train technical aspects indirectly, if possible (i.e. med ball work for start development). This helps prevent "Paralysis by Analysis" Never over-explain in order to show how smart you are. You are a coach- leave that to the "Gurus"!
  3. Practice makes permanent- not perfect. Make sure your athletes are physically prepared for any work that requires technical execution. This means make sure the most demanding parts of the workout occur right after the warm-up, and make sure you prescribe only the number of reps they can handle perfectly.
  4. At the first hint of any mechanical breakdown, stop the session and move on to less demanding training.

Speed Trap "5 Rules"
  1. Let my runners run
  2. Hands-on observation
  3. Reinforcing the positives
  4. Low-density coaching
  5. Patience

The oldest rule in the sprint book is to run with optimal form, no matter what happens! If you get a great start, terrific. If you get a bad one, too bad but you must run with the same optimal form all the same! There's a big difference between fighting and aggressive good form.

Send me a note. I'd love to add you to my LinkedIn or Facebook page.

CharlieFrancis.com page coming soon. 



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