GOAL: IM­PROVE AC­CEL­ER­A­TION (GET FASTER: PART 1)

Muscle & Performance - - Brand Spotlight -

Ob­vi­ously, your abil­ity to ac­cel­er­ate quickly, pow­er­fully and ef­fi­ciently is im­por­tant for sports, but it’s also a kick­ass way to tar­get your pos­te­rior chain, since ac­cel­er­a­tion de­pends pri­mar­ily on lower-body drive. Train­ing this skill will im­prove per­for­mance in pos­te­rior-chain lifts such as dead­lifts, good morn­ings and even squats.

Ac­cord­ing to a re­cent re­view of sprint stud­ies, co-writ­ten by Jalil­vand, do­ing sprints while wear­ing a weighted vest or tow­ing a sled were the most ef­fec­tive tech­niques for train­ing ac­cel­er­a­tion be­cause the goal here is neu­ro­mus­cu­lar: Since Type II fibers are only re­cruited un­der high force or power de­mand, adding re­sis­tance trains these fibers to fire when you need them. Use a weight that is 10 per­cent or less of your to­tal body­weight for your re­sis­tance to get the over­load you need with­out com­pro­mis­ing form, Jalil­vand ad­vises.

Di­rec­tions Load your vest or sled with 10 per­cent or less of your body­weight. For each sprint, ac­cel­er­ate as fast as pos­si­ble off the start­ing line. Walk and breathe deeply in be­tween to fully re­cover be­fore mov­ing on. For fun, test your speed with­out re­sis­tance in Week 1, not­ing your fastest 20-yard sprint (post warm-up). In Week 4, retest your speed and cal­cu­late the dif­fer­ence.

To re­cruit more fast-twitch mus­cle fibers, add re­sis­tance.

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