Sprinters are trained to be powerful and very explosive as they have to give an ‘’all-out attack’’ to beat the clock. Far from competing in sprinting this type of exercise can have some major positive effects on the body.
There are many different training programmes that can improve your sprinting times, such as a simple 20 minute 8 seconds on/12 seconds off protocol and Tabata workouts where you perform for 20 seconds on 10 seconds off. Check out some example sprint training examples below.
- Wingate Sprints
This is performing all out sprints from 30 seconds up to 60 seconds with short rest periods which can be done by using a Watt Bike, Spin Bike or simply using a running track. An effective way in which to utilise this is by spending 5-10 minutes post weights training workout.
While most sprints last much shorter than 30 seconds this method can increase your sprint endurance and will also improve your bodies ability to lose body fat.
- Decrease Distance Sprints
Doing this protocol you can ensure that the body can increase its ability to perform for a longer period of time and to reduce the time as the body becomes more fatigued. Performing a 200m sprint with 2 minutes rest, 100m sprint with 1 minute rest and finally perform 50m sprint followed by a 9 minute rest period then repeat the whole protocol 3 times over. This is a gruelling training regime and is recommended for those looking to improve their sprint times as well as their endurance and body composition.
- Power Sprint Protocol
Take a 35m distance and repeat 10 sprints as fast as is physically possible with a short 10 second rest period. This is ideal for those who are looking to improve explosive power, athletes such as rugby players, boxers, martial arts and other combative sports people.
- Tabata Training
An extremely fast training session that can be very effective and tiring. Taking 4 minute periods of time, you will sprint all out for 20 seconds with 10 second rest periods.
These techniques should be focused upon supplementing your resistance training programme, exercises such as heavy compound movements including Barbell Squats, Pull Ups, Barbell Hip Bridges and Barbell Bent Over Rows. Not everything must be explosive and represent the effects sprinting however the time under tension of the movements can really take a great effect on the body.
These programs must always be followed by a well-structured resistance program and a careful diet program as the benefits mentioned above can not occur. Also, they are not programs that can immediately fit in the routine of each one as there is a great risk of injury if there is not a strong muscular skeletal ensemble. However, when talking about programs that include increased cardiovascular pulse, the practitioner must get the doctor’s consent to participate in such high-intensity gymnastics.
Σάββας Σάββα, ΒSc (Hons), MSc (Hons)
Stength & Conditioning Coach / Προπονητής φυσικής κατάστασης
Αθλητής Ολυμπιακής Άρσης Βαρών
Athletes Innovation Team