Saturday, January 4, 2014

Train Fast-Twitch Muscle Fibers for Speed and Explosion

To improve your speed and explosiveness, train and activate the bulkier fast-twitch muscle fibers often.  Speed training athletes shouldn't do much slow, long distance running during training.  If you do too much long distance running, your slow-twitch muscle fibers will take over and make you slower and nonexplosive.

What about speed endurance training? This is something totally different. Speed endurance is the ability to maintain maximum velocity or a percentage of maximum velocity for a prolonged period of time or in a fatigued state.

When you are fatigued, it is important to maintain proper running mechanics. Doing so will give you an edge over your opponent.

Several sports require speed endurance including football, lacrosse, basketball, soccer, field hockey and tennis. These sports require repeated sprints followed by short periods of rest (walking or jogging).

Interval training for speed endurance is different than regular speed training. Speed endurance sprint intervals last from 30 seconds to 3 minutes. Also, recovery time is reduced to prevent complete recovery by the athlete.

I was once asking a client about running exercises they were doing in school athletics to improve running speed. The answer was disappointing and typical.

Some of the running drills were:

1. mile runs
2. stadium steps for endurance
3. gasers for conditioning

"Did you run any sprints?" "No." Guess what? Those athletes aren't getting any faster....they are just basically running for conditioning.

Conditioning has its place but if you want to get faster, you have to train fast. That means sprinting drills with enough recovery time to run each sprint full speed. About 1 minute of recovery time is needed for each 10 yards sprinted (50 yard sprints need about 5 minutes recovery time).

Running sprints after practice won't get the job done either. Players are too tired at this point to give maximum effort. So, coaches, do your sprinting drills at the beginning of practice when your players are fresh.

Explosive strength training can also train and activate your fast-twitch muscle fibers.

Train hard and smart to get faster.......Check out Perform Better.

Mark Dilworth, BA, PES
Sports Fitness Hut

1 comment:

  1. Bravo! You did an excellent job up there!
    Wish you all the best! :)
    I am waiting for this amazing 21 Day Fix Workout and I'm really excited to try it out..
    Would you be interested to comment about it ?


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