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It’s important to realize that sprinting is the most muscularly demanding act you can do with your entire body — we need to cover our bases and be careful. You first have to understand the rhythm of your arms and legs when sprinting, and these three drills can be just the tools you need to achieve that.
This drill sets the tone for a high-knee action and full arm swing. After you’ve warmed up your muscles with some light jogging and some solid dynamic stretching and mobility, focus on three sets of A-skips, covering 15 meters each step. Remember to keep your foot strike light and focus on a high-knee drive, with your toes up and a straight trunk.
Running A’s require the same actions as an A-skip, but this time, you’re moving a little faster. Kill the extra bounce between strides so it’s more of a run. Don’t let your knees drop or your arm swing shorten. Focus on three sets of 15 meters once again.
Lastly, bounding brings some explosive power into your stride by emphasizing a full leg extension as you push off the ground. Don’t aim for too much height or too much distance — make it a natural blend of both, and trust your technique of high knees and big arms. Focus on two sets of 30 meters.
Now that you’re ready and primed for some sprinting, here are a few things to remember: Sprinting is an anaerobic effort, meaning your muscles receive no oxygen. Just like strength training, you need to take your time to rest between rounds.
You really have no need to sprint to your absolute maximum capacity. It’s not the Olympics, and you’re not racing anyone. You’re still using the same energy systems, just leaving a bit of gas in the tank. That can be the difference between being relaxed and healthy or being tight and getting a cramp or pulling a muscle. Train smart.
A) 3×30 meter sprint @ 90% max. Rest 90 seconds between rounds.
B) 3×50 meter sprint @ 90% max. Rest two minutes between rounds.
C) 2×60 meter sprint @ 90% max. Rest two minutes between rounds.
D) 1×80 meter sprint @ 90% max. Rest three minutes.
E) 1×100 meter sprint @ 90% max. Rest as long as needed.
F) 1×150 meter sprint @ 80% max.
When sprinting, remember the following:
· Keep your eyes focused on the destination.
· Focus on a high-knee drive and full arm swing.
· Avoid twisting the torso. Keep your trunk stable and straight.
· Dorsiflex your toes. It will feel awkward, but it tremendously helps for a proper foot strike.
· Most important, relax. Tightness is the enemy to good sprint performance and injury prevention.
Follow these golden nuggets and you’ll be burning up the track and burning body fat at the same time.