This refers to the execution of sound technique during speed training. The first step towards achieving sound technique is learning efficient movement mechanics. Before coaching a player to move fast, they must be coached to move efficiently. Once a player masters movement mechanics, training can focus on optimising running technique with power and speed.
Poor technique reduces running efficiency and economy (Gambetta, 1991, Mann, 1985). In practice, many players will lose energy (and speed) through applying braking forces unintentionally (Cissik, 2004) and this is often caused by poor technique.
There are 3 main aspects of an effective sprint technique:
- leg action
- arm action (Brown and Ferrigno, 2005)
A good sprint technique will involve a smooth, cyclical action of the legs, opposite movement of the arms to the legs to provide counterbalance and a rigid torso to allow transfer of force throughout the body (Fletcher, 2009). Each phase of sprinting has its own technical demands highlighted below.