Association of sprint performance with ground reaction forces during the acceleration and maximal speed phases in a single sprint.

The speed with which all four phases of a short sprint (start, acceleration, maximum speed, and deceleration) are completed depends upon the amount of force applied during the pushing action away from the ground (ground reaction force – GRF) each foot strike, and the speed with which force is applied (rate of force production – …

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Neuromuscular training before practice improves performance in youth tennis players

Neuromuscular training for youth athletes typically involves calisthenics, plyometric exercises, change of direction drills and speed training. Ample research has demonstrated that pre-pubertal athletes can significantly improve markers of performance with neuromuscular training despite experiencing minimal changes in muscle hypertrophy. However, the timing or sequencing of neuromuscular training may impact training adaptations. For example, when …

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Relationships between barbell speed characteristics and sprint performance

Access to more affordable technologies such as accelerometers and linear position transducers that sync with mobile phones and tablet devices  has lead to an increase in the monitoring of bar speed in the weight room. In turn, a substantial increase in research on how bar speed can be practically implemented for athletes has been developed. …

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Jump height and relative strength predict sprint performance in elite athletes

Maximum acceleration ability and sprinting speed are key variables that separate the elite from the sub-elite athlete. The necessity to outrun an opponent occurs in virtually all team sports that can be a major determinant of match outcome and thus is an important element focused on during training. The ability to predict and monitor sprint …

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Does the barbell hip thrust improve 40 yard dash time?

Horizontal force production at the hip joint is a key component to acceleration speed during sprinting. While resisted-sprint training (e.g., sled-towing) has been shown to improve acceleration ability in athletes, there is minimal research on the effects of horizontal force producing weight-room movements on sprint performance. It’s been hypothesized that improving maximal strength in movements …

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Heavy sled-towing acutely enhances sprint-speed after 8 minutes of rest

Speed can be a determining factor in any team-sport competition. This is why many coaches dedicate considerable time and effort into improving speed. Resisted sprint-training is a traditional means of speed development in athletes. One of the most effective and popular methods of implementing resisted sprint-training is via sled-towing. However, considerable debate surrounds optimal training strategies for …

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Sprint training on level versus combined uphill and downhill surfaces

Linear sprinting speed is a highly coveted physical quality by team-sport coaches. Clocking a fast 40 yard dash at the combine can move up an athletes draft status and earn them higher salaries. Therefore, training to improve linear speed is a high priority for many teams. A common way to train for sprinting speed is …

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In-season resistance training frequency: Once or twice per week?

With the exception of football, it may take some convincing of coaches from other sports (e.g., soccer) to prioritize in-season resistance training. While the culture in soccer is progressively embracing the benefits of strength training, there are still many coaches and players who elect not to do it during the competitive season. This may be …

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Low or high volume plyometrics for young soccer players?

Plyometric training is one of the most effective training methods for improving sprinting, jumping and change of direction performance in team-sport athletes. Each of these physical performance qualities utilize the stretch-shortening cycle to harness the elastic properties of muscle and tendon. The neuromuscular adaptation that take place in response to plyometric training enable athletes to …

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Optimal preseason taper duration for team sport athletes

Preseason training typically involves an intensive 1-2 month period in which athletes are exposed to high training volumes, intensities and frequencies. The stress from training is exacerbated by hot and humid conditions typical of preseason periods for several sports. This may put athletes at risk of excess fatigue and performance decrements. While the intensified training …

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