Speed Clinics

 

SPEED CLINICS

Speed is not necessarily genetically inherited, but needs to be gained through fundamental work and training. Even though some athletes have a predisposition for being quick and fast, an athlete can dramatically increase these components using scientific training methodologies.

Speed clinics are offered by The Institute to introduce athletes to the principles and concepts involved with gaining better co-ordination, speed, quickness, power, strength, and agility.

Cost of the Speed Clinic:

The fee for a Speed Clinic is $35.00.   

SCHEDULING A SPEED CLINIC:

Speed Clinics are scheduled by phoning The Institute. An athlete is scheduled one on one with one of The Institute trainers. Siblings may be scheduled together. Numerous times are available each day for Speed Clinics. A Speed Clinic generally takes one hour.

PREPARING FOR THE SPEED CLINIC:

For athletes under 18 years of age, parents are generally in attendance. A parental informed consent must be signed, before an athlete can go through The Speed Clinic. The informed consent can be signed at The Speed Clinic, or it can be faxed to the parent, signed, and then faxed back or returned to The Institute, if the parent will not be in attendance. It is always recommended that a parent be present for young athletes from ages 8 to 15 years old.

Athletes should wear athletic clothes and shoes for the Speed Clinic.

ATHLETES ARE PROVIDED THE FOLLOWING PHYSIOLOGICAL ASSESSMENTS:

      • Review of Acceleration Program Components, Video
      • Gait Analysis, Running on the treadmill
      • Hip Girdle Evaluation, looking at range of motion between the Hip Flexors vs. the Hip Extensors (agonists and antagonist muscle groups) for potential speed deficits and increased injury.
      • Super Treadmill Protocols Training
      • Plyometric Training Protocols

After completion of The Speed Clinic, athletes (and their parnets) will understand the components of speed, quickness, and agility.  The athlete will also understand what deficits they possess and how they affect the athelte's ability to gain speed , and whether thesedeficits potentiate risk of injury in athletics.

THE COMPONENTS OF ACCELERATION PROGRAMS AND SPEED CLINICS INCORPORATE PRINCIPLES FOR OPTIMAL PERFORMANCE, BIOMECHANICS, AND REDUCTION OF RISK FOR INJURY

The majority of injuries in athletics could be avoided with preventative medicine. Listed below are several of the ways an athlete can minimize their risk of injury:

          PROPER WARM-UP STRETCHING AND COOL-DOWN

    Muscle fiber and tendon are susceptible to injury when cold. The purpose of the warm-up is to increase the temperature of the body. The warm-up   should last 5-10 minutes and be at a low work intensity.

    Once the body is warmed up, stretching helps prepare the muscle and tendons for vigorous contraction and improves the flexibility of the athlete. Stretching should be performed smoothly, and each stretch should be held for 10 to 30 seconds. Ballistic, jerky stretching can cause joint and muscle damage. The cool-down phase helps rinse the body's cardiovascular system and helps relax any sustained muscular contractions.

    The cool-down phase should be at a low work intensity and last at least 10 minutes after vigorous exercise; walking into the locker room, throwing your towel down and showering is not considered an adequate cool-down phase. Some experts recommend stretching in the cool-down phase as well.

    POOR RUNNING MECHANICS

    Ankle sprains, hamstring pulls, knee joint tendon damage, and even back problems can be caused by poor running mechanics.

    One of the biggest causes of injury is the lack of hip drive. If a runner is unable to adequately flex at the hip joint the force from the toe off is absorbed by the front leg and not used to increase stride length. We have all heard the constant pounding of someone's feet up and down the basketball court. Every time you hear that sound, imagine the force across the knee joint as the legs being driven vigorously into the floor. By improving the hip drive and overall running mechanics this can be avoided.

    LACK OF MUSCULAR STRENGTH AND ENDURANCE

     The lack of muscular strength and endurance can cause added stress on joints leading to tendon and ligament damage. This is because the muscle is not strong enough or conditioned enough for support. It leaves an athlete more susceptible to serious musculoskeletal injury in contact and collision sports.

    Weight training, if done correctly, is extremely beneficial in injury prevention. Basically, our weight training programs focus on increasing the force of muscular contractions through smooth, non-ballistic movements in a controlled environment to help prepare the athlete for the explosive muscular contractions in a non-controlled environment, i.e., GAME.

    Appropriate weight training is not going to make a female athlete excessively muscle bound and have a masculine appearance because they do not have the high testosterone levels. Young female athletes are prone to stress fractures, and knee / ankle injuries. The Institute's programs focus on strength, endurance, power and flexibility of the hip girdle that lowers risk for injury in young female athletes as well as improving quickness and speed.

    OPTIMAL SPRINT BIOMECHANICS

    Torso Position: The torso should be forward approximately 6 degrees. The head is fixed and looking straight forward. It is important that the entire upper body, arms included, is relaxed, while maintaining proper running form and position.

    Arm Action: The elbow joint angle should be approximately 90 degrees. During the backwards arm motion action, the elbows drive fully back until the hand is in a hip pocket position. The elbow, during the forward action drives forward and slightly inward. The hands should not extend above the neck, and remain in a forward and backward track, not crossing over into the trunk space.

    Leg Action: During the forward leg action the knee drives straight forward to a hip flexion angle of approximately 70 degrees. The lower leg extends horizontally in a "pawing" motion. As the leg extends backwards the angle of hip extension is approximately 20 degrees The knee joint extends fully at toe off.

    It is important to keep all movements as straight forward as possible. Excessive side to side movements can make a sprinter much less efficient.

    INCREASING SPRINT SPEED AND ACCELERATION:

    Sprint speed is maximized by optimizing the combination of stride frequency and stride length.

    Both stride frequency and length are improved by increasing the force of the muscular contractions. We accomplish this by having the athlete run at various combinations of speed and elevation. Many of our sets involve sprinting at levels higher than they could possibly attain without our technician's spot. This overload causes the muscles to adapt by improving the neuromuscular pathways physiologically to increase the force of contraction.

    Using optimal sprinting biomechanics also maximizes sprint speed. The most important factor in maximizing stride length is proper hip extension and hip flexion. We focus extensively on hip girdle strength and flexibility in all of our programs. By performing exaggerated hip flexion and extension motions, the athlete increases their hip girdle flexibility and strength. In the advanced levels of our programs, sprint cords are added to further intensify these motions.

     

     

Washington Institute of Sports Medicine  |  12707 120th Ave NE # 100 Kirkland, WA  98034  |  425-820-2110