Coaching Sprint Mechanics. What to look for. What to say.
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Coaching Sprint Mechanics. What to look for. What to say.

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This is Dr. Mike Young's presentation from the 2014 Midwest Speed Summit. Dr. Young is the owner and Director of Performance at Athletic Lab sports performance training center and has coached......

This is Dr. Mike Young's presentation from the 2014 Midwest Speed Summit. Dr. Young is the owner and Director of Performance at Athletic Lab sports performance training center and has coached multiple national champions in Track & Field along with working with some of the fastest athletes in soccer, football and baseball. This presentation focuses on applied sprinting mechanics and how coaches can best make technical changes. The presentation uses biomechanics and motor learning concepts and relates them to coaching the sprints.

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  • 1. SPRINT MECHANICS: WHAT TO LOOK FOR & HOW TO EFFECTIVELY MAKE CHANGES! Mike Young, PhD HPC - Athletic Lab Cary, NC @mikeyoung #speedsummit
  • 2. •General Concepts of Sprinting •Motor Learning Fundamentals •Optimizing Acceleration Mechanics •OptimizingTransition Mechanics •Optimizing MaxV Speed Mechanics •Take Home Points
  • 3. GENERAL CONCEPTS OF SPRINTING by Hugo Faasta
  • 4. BACK SIDE MECHANICS Refers to the motions of the swing leg that occurs BEHIND the body
  • 5. FRONT SIDE MECHANICS Refers to the motions of the swing leg that occurs IN FRONT of the body
  • 6. ACCELERATION CHARACTERISTICS • Velocity @10m: ~8.2 m/s! • Ground ContactTime: ~0.17 sec! • Height of foot @ 1st step: 12-30cm! • Stride Frequency: 3.6-4 Hz! • Stride Lengths: ~1.5m first step
  • 7. *MaximalVelocity: ~12.8 m/s! ! ! *Ground ContactTime: ~0.08 sec! *40-45 steps for sub 9.80 100m *Stride Frequency: ~5 Hz! ! ! *StrideVelocity: ~300 deg / sec! *Stride Lengths: 2.25-2.7m MAXIMALVELOCITY CHARACTERISTICS
  • 8. KINETIC PARAMETERS • Ground reaction forces approaching 5x bodyweight! • Muscle forces in excess of 7x bodyweight
  • 9. Sprinting 101 Small Mass + Big Force + Right Direction + Minimal Time Run Faster
  • 10. • To increase running speed an athlete must increase force to the ground in the appropriate direction and do so over increasingly shorter periods of time! • Minimize horizontal braking forces*! • Increase propulsive forces FORCE DEVELOPMENT & SPRINTING
  • 11. Horizontal vsVertical Propulsive Forces....! and why you don’t have to pick a side
  • 12. VERTICAL FORCE MATTERS… Rela%onships,among,jumping,performances,and,sprint,parameters, during,maximum,speed,phase,in,sprinters,,by,Kale,,Asci,,Bayrak,and, Acikada,,in,Journal,of,Strength,and,Condi%oning,Research,,2009!
  • 13. from Strength & Conditioning Research …BUT SO DOES HORIZONTAL FORCE
  • 14. THE LEG AS A SWINGING SPRING
  • 15. • Refers of the ability of the leg to act as like a spring • Momentum is developed during acceleration • Body will move at same rate unless acted on by unbalanced forces • Two external forces will cause deceleration • Leg stiffness increases vertical impulse, shortens ground contact and increases elastic return INCREASE LEG STIFFNESS
  • 16. • Increased vertical force produces:! • Greater displacement! • Stiffer spring! • Better maintenance of momentum VERTICAL FORCE PRODUCTION
  • 17. Vertical Displacement? The path of COM will follow a sinusoidal curve when viewed in the sagittal plane COM reaches apex in flight COM low point during support
  • 18. Vertical force production is the key component of top-end speed and that in turn influences the ability to maintain a slight increase in stride length and stride frequency Dan Pfaff
  • 19. Charlie Francis To go faster, you need more force. The more force you apply, the higher you will rise off the ground.
  • 20. Better sprinters may appear to bounce In reality, flight times are similar and ground contact times are shorter
  • 21. • Stride frequency is comprised of two components: ! 1. Ground contact time ! 2. Flight time! • The best sprinters spend less time on the ground ! ◦ Greater frequency MORE SPRINT MATH
  • 22. The benefit of greater force application is two-fold:! • Increased stride length • Increased stride frequency STRIDE LENGTH & FREQUENCY
  • 23. To run faster there is only ONE solution
  • 24. Apply More Mass Specific Force to the Ground!
  • 25. Motor Learning
  • 26. Sprinting is an extremely complex motor task involving repeated rapid ‘switching on and off’ of practically every muscle in the body
  • 27. Dr. Ralph Mann Sprinting fast is an unnatural activity
  • 28. Loren Seagrave
  • 29. TRUE learning is assessed by retention
  • 30. Things to Consider Intrinsic vs. Augmented feedback Knowledge of results vs. Knowledge of performance Novice vs. Expert
  • 31. X
  • 32. Internal vs External Cues
  • 33. Feedback Frequency
  • 34. Clear. Concise. Concrete.
  • 35. Accelerate like a plane taking off
  • 36. Elbow the short person
  • 37. Hit the ground like a sledge hammer
  • 38. You’re running like a hamster in a spinning wheel
  • 39. Make your legs like pistons
  • 40. Good Feedback is like Triage… Don’t fix a hangnail before a heart attack
  • 41. Optimizing Mechanics
  • 42. General Sprinting Mechanics
  • 43. •Better sprinters are front-side dominant •Better sprinters have shorter contact times •Full extension neither needed nor beneficial •Ideal touchdown characterized by swing knee even with support knee
  • 44. POS TU URE
  • 45. The first most important aspect of speed is posture. TomTellez
  • 46. Posture is like the mast and rudder for the limbs
  • 47. Posture Trunk Erect Head Level Hips Tall Posture
  • 48. • Movements of the limbs originate from the core of the body! • Proper stabilization and alignment of the core ensures appropriate movements of the limbs POSTURE
  • 49. PELVIC TILT Posterior Tilt = less hamstring tension, more QFM tension! Anterior Tilt = more hamstring tension, less QFM tension
  • 50. Acceleration: What to See. What to Say.
  • 51. What to See • Big split of arms & legs • Forward lean (from the ankles) • Neutral postural alignment pushing through long axis of body • ‘Complete’ pushes & triple extension • Low heel recovery • Gradual progression of body angles
  • 52. What to Say • “Knees to chest” • “Shade the sun” • “Feel the feet behind you” • “Push the ground away” • “Legs like pistons” • “Push, Push, PUSH!” • “Drag the toe” (even though you don’t want them to) • “Step over the ankle” • “Push yourself up”
  • 53. Transition:WhatToSee.WhattoSay.
  • 54. What to See • Continued progression of body angles • Preservation of posture • Gradual changes in limb movement magnitude • Progressively higher heel recovery during swing phase
  • 55. What to Say • “Push yourself tall” • “Tuck the hips” • “Cheek to cheek” • “Step over the ankle, step over the calf, step over the heel”
  • 56. Top Speed: What To See. What To Say.
  • 57. EFFECTIVE GROUND CONTACT POSITION
  • 58. What to See • Upright posture • Powerful & dynamic arm swing (not locked at 90 deg) • High knee recovery • Front side dominance • Relaxation in face, shoulders, hands • Foot contact under the hips • ~Vertical shin angle at GCT • Pre-activation prior to contact
  • 59. What to Say • “Balance a bowl on your head” • “Slam the elbows down” • “Step over the knee” • “Feel everything in front” • “Imaging you have a rubber band from you heel to your butt” • “Make your eyelids jiggle” • “Run tall and bounce” • “Push up” ….or “Push down” • “Be a super bouncy ball”
  • 60. Creating a learning environment
  • 61. Creating a learning environment Try to coach without “coaching” by creating an environment that facilitates motor learning Create contextual interference by varying trial type & order Tools & specific environments can make motor patterns idiot proof
  • 62. Block Serial Random Falling Start! Falling Start! Crouch Start Falling Start! Crouch Start Falling Start! Falling Start! Starting Blocks Crouch Start Falling Start! Falling Start! Starting Blocks Crouch Start Crouch Start Falling Start! Crouch Start Starting Blocks Starting Blocks Crouch Start Falling Start! Crouch Start Crouch Start Crouch Start Falling Start! Starting Blocks Starting Blocks Starting Blocks Starting Blocks Falling Start! Crouch Start Starting Blocks Crouch Start Starting Blocks Starting Blocks Starting Blocks Falling Start! Increase Contextual Interference to Enhance Skill Acquisition
  • 63. Practice Variability? Increasing Variability Enhances Learning Surface Weather Block position Gun vs Clap Alone or with partner
  • 64. FRAMEWORK FOR SKILL ACQUISITION Contextual Interference Movement & Task Variability Low Practice Variability Beginners Experts Intermediate High Practice Variability Low Contextual Interference High Contextual Interference Wu, 2008
  • 65. Use Tools And environments that facilitate learning
  • 66. SPRINTING IS A SKILL SPRINTING FASTER IS THE RESULT OF PUTTING MORE FORCE IN TO THE GROUND AT AS LITTLE BODY MASS AS POSSIBLE BETTER PRACTICE DESIGN IMPROVES SKILL ACQUISITION WHICH ALLOWS MOVEMENT TO BE AUTOMATIC, REFLEXIVE & EFFICIENT THE WAY A MESSAGE IS DELIVERED IS JUST AS IMPORTANT AS THE MESSAGE UNDERSTAND THE BASICS OF MOTOR LEARNING BEST PRACTICES
  • 67. @MIKEYOUNG! ATHLETICLAB.COM! ELITETRACK.COM! FITFORFUTBOL.COM! HPCSPORT.COM! SLIDESHARE.NET/HPCSPORT! THANKS