It’s track and field season at [TrainedTuff Gym Headquarters] and now is the time we bridge the gap between the gym and track with “transfer exercises”. These skill transfer exercises such as sled sprints, bodyweight tempo training and explosive work is the next step.
The overall volume of strength work is decreased and sport specific work increased. Moving from strength to speed is a process that requires a foundation of strength with sprinting, jumping and changing directions (depending on athlete event). It does an athlete no good if he or she is strong, but cannot get into the desired position to use his or her strength.
This is why strength exercises not only need to be coupled with speed training drills, but also minimized as the athletes season nears.
Strength in proper position increases speed with full range of motion of power.
When you become stronger, the body can handle the desired position to explode into full range of motion as seen in a proper block start.
A great start from the blocks requires an athlete to achieve and maintain a forty five degree angle (forward lean) with arm action and explosive leg drive during the acceleration phase. If strength training is not properly introduced, explosive starts and fast twitch muscle fiber are not activated or increased.
Unless you are Bo Jackson or Deion Sanders, don’t expect to win big when commitment to training is an issue. Building strength and speed must be committed to.
What specific exercises deliver what your talking about Joe?
Here are some specific exercises that you can implement right now for your “track and field” work. Keep in mind that these movements are altered out of and should be coupled with other movements throughout the training program.
Assuming proper landing technique is mastered:
Mastery of proper technique before barbell is loaded on spine:
*One Leg Bulgarian Squats
The increases of your strength relative to your bodyweight will make you faster due to overcoming excess forces on the upper body. Fast arms and fast legs is what we are after here.
Bonus Tip (Three Step Sprinter Key)
*Violent Arm Action
The three step sprinter key emphasizes the athletes “visualization factor” on proper drive, angle, and arm action. This position needs to be maintained during the acceleration phase of a sprint.