Speed Improvement Focus: MUSCLE IMBALANCE AND SPEED

MUSCLE IMBALANCE AND SPEED

The major focus on muscle imbalance in the past has been between joint agonists and antagonists such as the quadriceps (generally well developed in sprinters) and hamstrings (underdeveloped in most athletes). A quadriceps/hamstrings ratio of 60: 40 has been recommended to prevent injury and provide optimal function. Ratios are also suggested for the biceps/triceps and other muscle groups. Numerous activities and exercises produce strength increases in agonistic muscle groups without a corresponding increase in the antagonistic muscle group. It is difficult to determine just how much a quadriceps/hamstrings imbalance and upper body imbalances of this nature affects speed in short sprints.

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Speed Improvement Focus: THE FUNCTION OF THE MID TORSO IN SPORT ACTIVITIES

THE FUNCTION OF THE MID TORSO IN SPORT ACTIVITIES

Most sports encompass relatively large movements of the trunk. Since the trunk segment has a large mass, great demands are exerted on the trunk musculature, particularly if the trunk movements are to be performed with high accelerations. Also the trunk has a critical role in the maintenance of stability and balance when performing movements with the extremities.

Sporting activities requiring running or jumping place pressure on the lumbo-pelvic region (that includes the 4th and 5th lumbar vertebra), the pelvis and the hips as this region becomes the hub of weight bearing. The superior forces (from torso, head and arms) meet the inferior forces transmitted from the ground through the lower extremity. No part of the body is more vulnerable to tissue strains and sprains.

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Speed Improvement Focus: FOOT SPACING GUIDELINES FOR THE 40-YARD DASH

FOOT SPACING GUIDELINES FOR THE 40-YARD DASH

Three slightly different approaches are worthy of testing for team sport athletes to determine which method produces the fastest 40-yard dash time or fastest 5-20 yard time for interior linemen in football and players in other sports where very short sprints are critical. The key factor is to find the technique that allows you to reach maximum speed as quickly as possible. A 4-point track stance is preferred for each method although a 3-point stance could also be used.

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Speed Improvement Focus: HYPONATREMIA IS A SERIOUS THREAT ON HOT, HUMID DAYS

HYPONATREMIA IS A SERIOUS THREAT ON HOT, HUMID DAYS

Hot, humid weather poses a serious health risk to all athletes and fitness enthusiasts who engage in strenuous activity for long periods of time. Most individuals are now programmed to replace lost fluids with properly spaced water consumption during activity. Athletes are aware that once a water deficit occurs. it is nearly impossible to eliminate until the post-exercise period. They are also aware of the tremendous amounts of fluid that is lost through perspiration during several hours of tennis, jogging, road racing, triathlon and marathon races, soccer, rugby, and othe team sport activities. This behavior provides considerable protection from the common heat-related disorders such as muscle cramps, heat exhaustion, and heat stroke.

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Speed Improvement Focus: YOU CAN SLOW DOWN THE AGING PROCESS AND LIVE LONGER

YOU CAN SLOW DOWN THE AGING PROCESS AND LIVE LONGER

There is much a coach can do to slow the aging process and live a longer, healthier life, regardless of the stressful nature of the profession. Researchers who compared the life span of 21,000 same-sex identical twins who were raised together with those separated at birth found that genetics account for only one-third of the differences in life expectancy. What are the other two-thirds? After eliminating factors over which you have no control (accidental death, radiation exposure, and everything in between), lifestyle has the single greatest influence on longevity and the risk of age-related deaths from heart disease, stroke, Type 2 diabetes, and most cancers.

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Speed Improvement Focus: MUSCLE WEIGHT GAIN WITHOUT STEROIDS

MUSCLE WEIGHT GAIN WITHOUT STEROIDS

Avoiding any steroid or growth enhancing aid is a wise health decision for athletes and non athletes. A drug-free muscle weight gain program can be very effective with considerable dedication to both diet and exercise. For high school and college athletes, sound, safe approach strives to add NO MORE than a half-pound of muscle per week, two pounds per month. This is about as quick as the body can add lean muscle. Faster approaches involving too many calories are almost certain to add adipose (fat) tissue. For some high school and college athletes, an even more conservative, effective approach is one-fourth pound per week, one pound per month, 12 pounds in one year.

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