The world of fitness and strength training is ever evolving, with new techniques and methodologies emerging regularly. A recent study, “Strength and Conditioning Practices of Brazilian Olympic Sprint and Jump Coaches“, provides valuable insights into the training regimes of elite athletes. This article aims to translate these insights into practical programming ideas for fitness professionals working with clients keen on improving their explosive power and sprinting technique.

Key Findings from the Study

The study, conducted among Brazilian Olympic sprint and jump coaches, revealed a strong emphasis on developing explosiveness, power, and sprinting speed. Interestingly, the coaches showed a preference for high-volume resistance training during competitive periods and a varied approach to repetitions during off-season resistance training. This approach deviates from traditional periodisation models, suggesting a more dynamic and individualised strategy.

Programming Ideas for Explosive Power and Sprinting Technique

1. Plyometric Training

  • Box Jumps: Start with lower heights, focusing on explosive jumps and soft landings. Gradually increase the height as the client’s power improves.
  • Bounding Drills: These mimic the explosive and dynamic movements of sprinting, enhancing leg power and coordination.

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2. Resistance Training

  • Olympic Lifts: Incorporate clean and jerk, and snatch exercises. These movements are excellent for developing total body power.
  • Squats and Deadlifts: Focus on low repetitions with heavy weights to build strength, followed by lighter weights for speed and explosiveness.

3. Sprint Training

  • Hill Sprints: These build strength and power in the legs, crucial for explosive starts.
  • Flying Sprints: Start with a jog, build up to a run, and then sprint at maximum effort for a short distance. This helps in improving sprinting technique and speed.

4. Flexibility and Mobility Work

  • Dynamic Stretching: Prioritise dynamic stretches over static ones to improve range of motion and prepare the muscles for explosive movements.
  • Mobility Drills: Include drills that enhance joint mobility, especially in the hips and ankles, crucial for efficient sprinting.

5. Technology and Monitoring

  • Wearable Tech: Use technology to monitor heart rates and track progress. This can help in customising training intensity and volume.
  • Video Analysis: Record and analyse sprinting technique to make necessary adjustments.

6. Periodisation

  • Customised Approach: Instead of traditional periodisation, adapt the training volume and intensity based on the individual’s response and competitive schedule.

7. Recovery

  • Adequate Rest: Ensure sufficient rest between high-intensity workouts to prevent overtraining.
  • Nutrition and Hydration: Focus on a balanced diet and adequate hydration for optimal performance and recovery.

The study of Brazilian Olympic coaches offers a fresh perspective on strength and conditioning, particularly in developing explosive power and sprinting technique. By incorporating these programming ideas, fitness professionals can provide their clients with effective and varied training routines that are both challenging and rewarding. Remember, individualisation and adaptability are key to achieving the best results.

References:

  1. Loturco, I., Haugen, T., Freitas, T. T., Bishop, C., Moura, T. B. M. A., Mercer, V. P., Alcaraz, P., Pereira, L., & Weldon, A. (2023). Strength and Conditioning Practices of Brazilian Olympic Sprint and Jump Coaches. Journal of Human Kinetics. Click here to review the full research article

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