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Speed Training 101

Posted Oct 18 2010 4:44pm
You want more running speed. Every athlete wants more speed. Speed is much more than straight-ahead running. In this article, I will cover some general speed training guidelines....

1. Straight-ahead speed is important but there are other types of speed such as starting speed, acceleration speed, top-end speed, change-of-direction speed, stopping speed, closing speed and speed endurance. You should train for all types of speed particular to your sport. Quickness, which is reacting explosively without hesitation should also be trained for and will enhance your overall speed.

2. Your body needs adequate strength (including core strength ) and speed strength (power) for you to reach your running speed potential.

3. Master bodyweight speed drills before progressing to assisted or weight-bearing speed drills.

4. You need to master the basic running mechanics to become faster. Posture, arm action and leg action are keys to improving your speed.



5. Running alone will not give you the leg strength you will need to improve your running speed. You should strengthen your legs with exercises like squats , step ups and lunges because these exercises use the same pathways that it takes to run with speed .

Don't worry about leg extensions too much because the quadriceps will get plenty of work with other exercises. Instead, focus on strengthening the hamstrings with exercises like hamstring curls, straight-leg deadlifts and good mornings .

The quadriceps shouldn't be significantly stronger than the hamstrings. If so, you are headed for injuries such as knee ACL tears . And, don't forget about your calf muscles.

The calf muscles provide at least 30% of the strength and power it takes to run fast . Use calf raises (seated or standing) to strengthen the calves.

6. You have to train fast to get faster! Too much distance running will defeat your goal of improving your speed. When training for speed, distance running should be kept to a minimum because it reduces explosiveness. You can condition for your sport by doing metabolic training, which is training that closely mimics your game-time competition.

Train hard and smart!

Need more sports training tips? Subscribe to my Sports Performance Tips eNewsletter and get my Free eBook, "10 'Must Know' Speed Training Tips!"

Other things being equal, a muscular, powerful athlete will outperform a fat, slower or skinny, weaker athlete. Sports Fitness Hut's Fat Blaster Athletic Power Training System will give you your "lean and mean" athletic machine!

Check out my other great blogs:

Her Fitness Hut Blog Her Fitness Hut is featured on EmpowHER , a great health issues website for women! Her Fitness Hut has also been named in the Top 50 Personal Training Blogs by Physical Therapy Assistant Schools !

My Fitness Hut Blog has been recognized by Stanford University Wellsphere as a Top Health Blogger ! Quite an honor coming from that institution!
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