T Nation

Speed Training

Does anyone know of a place where I can find a sprint/speed training workout program for increasing speed?
Thanks,

T-Man

T man, well, there should be some info right on here if you do a search. DeFranco knows alot about incresing performance re-speed. Also, the Charlie Francis site is excellent reagarding this. They have subject areas on nutrition and strength too but its not near the depth of this site. Also, there’s a chain of exercise facilities run by Loren Seagrave but I’ll be damned if I can remember its name. Power Drive.

If you tell us your goals, maybe some of us on the forum could help with a template.

The best program I can think of is Joe DeFranco’s Modified Westside template.

DeFranco, like many strength coaches,
enormously overemphasizes strength training for speed improvement. I reccommend that you ignore what the strength coaches have to say and go straight to the sprint coaches, i.e. Charlie Francis

Loren Seagrave is associated with Velocity Sports. The Charlie Francis Training System also has some very interesting things to say about strength training for speed…more or less that you can’t tell whether all the speed work (more intense CNS stimulation than lifting) drives the strength gains, or vice versa, but that you still try to get the most out of it (p57-60). He only backed off weights when speed performance plateaued, meaning that lifting is a means to an end within his sport.

Still, squatting 4x600 and inclining 2x330, almost twice your bodyweight, will NOT hurt your speed.

[quote]john p wrote:
Loren Seagrave is associated with Velocity Sports. The Charlie Francis Training System also has some very interesting things to say about strength training for speed…more or less that you can’t tell whether all the speed work (more intense CNS stimulation than lifting) drives the strength gains, or vice versa, but that you still try to get the most out of it (p57-60). He only backed off weights when speed performance plateaued, meaning that lifting is a means to an end within his sport.

Still, squatting 4x600 and inclining 2x330, almost twice your bodyweight, will NOT hurt your speed.[/quote]

Doing it wont hurt your speed, but training for it might… if you spend all your time training to squat 600 x 4 and bench 2 x bodyweight then you will definetly not be training optimally…

A lot of people could devote their entire training lives to trying to achieve those numbers and never get there…

Greene and Montgomery cant get anywhere near those numbers but still ran 9.79 and 9.78, sure bens was more impressive but it is imperative to remember that when training for speed, being strong is not the goal just something that may assist…

Both of you have made valuable points.
Strength will assist, but conversely spending too much time training for strength is not optimal either.

[quote]john p wrote:
Still, squatting 4x600 and inclining 2x330, almost twice your bodyweight, will NOT hurt your speed.[/quote]

I agree completely, but realize that a handfull sprinters have been just as fast without putting up that kind of weight. Weight training, while beneficial for speed development, mostly just makes you better at weight training. It is part of a sprint training program, but it is NOT the first priority and it does NOT take precedence over sprint training. So many strength coaches are just too obsessed with strength training to realize this.

[quote]iflyboats wrote:
john p wrote:
Still, squatting 4x600 and inclining 2x330, almost twice your bodyweight, will NOT hurt your speed.

I agree completely, but realize that a handful sprinters have been just as fast without putting up that kind of weight. Weight training, while beneficial for speed development, mostly just makes you better at weight training. It is part of a sprint training program, but it is NOT the first priority and it does NOT take precedence over sprint training. So many strength coaches are just too obsessed with strength training to realize this.[/quote]

Exactly. While strength training can enhance linear speed (I assume that’s what the original poster was referring to) it is not the best way to do so. In the end, sprinting still reigns supreme (based on my experiences).

Here’s a link to an article by Coach Barry Ross, one of the guys who train Allyson Felix, the 18 yo girl who won the silver in athens.

www.dragondoor.com/articler/mode3/269/

rappan

[quote]rappan wrote:
Here’s a link to an article by Coach Barry Ross, one of the guys who train Allyson Felix, the 18 yo girl who won the silver in athens.

www.dragondoor.com/articler/mode3/269/

rappan[/quote]

No offense to rappan, but that article is terrible. It’s a horrifically oversimplified model of the strength-speed relationship.

I actually dont mind the article. All it is basically saying is make sure your relative strength is as very good.

[quote]Nathan N wrote:
If you tell us your goals, maybe some of us on the forum could help with a template.
/quote]

Wow, thanks for all the help so far guys. Anyway, I am mainly trying to improve my speed on the 40yd dash, but it would be nice if I could improve body composition at the same time. (currrently @ about 10%bf)

[quote]Chris Aus wrote:
I actually dont mind the article. All it is basically saying is make sure your relative strength is as very good. [/quote]

No, it’s saying that relative strength is “the holy grail” of speed training, being the single most important factor that contributes to speed. I have several problems with his argument:

  1. He defines and measures strength as the amount of weight that an athlete can lift in a given exercise, and then assumes that the athlete will demonstrate the same level of strength on the track. This is faulty because heavy weight training obviously has a huge neuromuscular component, and it is a mistake to assume that the neurological adaptations to lifting are relevant to sprinting.

  2. His argument assumes that maximum strength is the issue in the first place, which it isn’t. The amount of force an athlete can produce is specific to a particular time interval. The shorter the interval, the less force can be produced. During sprnting, the only force that makes a significant contribution is that which can be applied during a very short time interval. This is why strength training has limited potential to improve speed in the first place.

Iffy I agree wiht your criticisms, I guess how good the article is depends on what audience it is aimed at and how literally you want to take it and what you are comparing it to…

I was just after the big print message which was that relative strength is more important than absolute strength… You obviously looked at the finer detail…

After reading the article I thought of a couple of people I know who want to be competitive athletes and train accordingly on the court/track but spend their time in the gym training like a bodybuilder.
It wouldnt be a bad article for them at all…
They are doing the sports work but just want to get a bit stronger and dont really know how.