Everybody's looking for NEW ways to improve running speed....sometimes, the simple answer is right there in front of you....pay more attention to training your lower legs for strength and power....
The lower legs can provide 20% to 25% of the power needed for an explosive start. And, explosive starts can be the difference in you making the play or winning the race.
Rate-of-force production (how fast your muscles produce force) or speed strength is one of the best indicators of whether you will succeed in your sport.
When you plan your workout routine, include more calf muscle exercises like:
1) Explosive standing dumbbell calf raises (go as fast as possible to failure 3-4 sets). You can progress to one-legged calf raises (pictured above).
2) Explosive lifts on the leg press with only your toes lifting the weight (3 sets/20 repetitions). You can progress to one-legged lifts.
3) Barbell calf raises using jumping motion (explode upward on your toes as if you are jumping). Do 3 sets of 20 repetitions. Progress to one-legged raises.
You can work the calf muscles more frequently than other muscle groups (up to 4 times a week) because they bounce back faster.
Its also important to do static calf stretches after your workout to bring muscles back to their normal length.
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Mark Dilworth, BA, PES
Sports Fitness Hut
Saturday, March 29, 2014
Calf Muscles Improve Power and Explosive Speed
I am a Lifestyle Weight Management Specialist. Since 2006, I have been the owner of Her Fitness Hut, My Fitness Hut, Sports Fitness Hut and Your Fitness University. I have helped thousands transform their bodies to lean with lasting weight loss.
I encourage clients and readers to make lifestyle changes that lead to better long-term health, which includes acceptable body fat and your ideal body weight. I do not recommend fad diets, quick weight loss gimmicks, starvation diets, weight loss pills, fat burner supplements and the like.