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In Search of Power, Part 7



Posted in: Articles by ProSource, Training Articles
By John Davies | Jun 26, 2009



Power is the hidden elixir that the sporting world clamors for. For many the search encompasses a myriad of sales pitches, specialized equipment and training regimes that befuddle physicists. Yet, in truth, it is a relatively straight forward approach (with the right coaching expertise, patience and dedicated training) that will enable athletes to make enormous strides.           
           
Quite naturally the first step in power development is the review of the full " Renegade Wheel of Conditioning" and resistance protocols found in the first six stages of this series. However, of the remaining elements, one very curious training medium is missing and it would be remiss of me to not mention it.           
           
One of the "toughest" sections of training (and one rarely discussed in print or internet publications) is bounding drills. If you want above average results you’re going to have to strive above the rest and without a doubt bounding drills are a must. Bounding drills aren’t simply a training medium I recommend, but something I incorporate upwards of three times per week and can be incorporated in virtually any training environment. While certainly some drills require a ten to twenty yard / meter stretch of track or otherwise unencumbered gym floor, many can be performed "on the spot" or in a moderately small area. As exhibited in the photos it can be performed on a chilly late autumn day, an inside track or one of my favorites, in the snow. Additionally for very advanced athletes they can be performed in sand but I wish to stress this is best suited for only advanced athletes as a form of "imperfect training" or sub-maximal plyometrics and less developed athletes are better served to use stable ground for maximal output.            
           
In choosing from a broad swath of possible exercises I took three relatively uncomplicated movements to start with. While we will expand upon our exercise selection in upcoming releases, these are a solid starting ground as each movement will have a tremendous impact on explosive power development of hip, glute and hamstring areas and does not require significant space.           


"A-Skips"

            
Throughout each of these movements, if not all of exercise, correct posture must be stressed. The incumbent needs to display a "proud chest" with shoulders pinched back and down. The jaw-line shoulder region should be relaxed with the head supported (or, using a dancer's vernacular, pulled upwards on a string). This is essentially a tempo driven activity that exaggerates a childlike skip. Starting with heels elevated off the ground the lead leg comes off the ground, thigh breaking past parallel hip joint and then striking down with force. Once this move is perfected we will add further staples that build upon it.            


"Flutter-Kicks"

             
The flutter kick is classified as an "intermediate" drill per level of difficulty however for many the keep points will be difficult to maintain. Starting with heels elevated and a slight bounce step, sprint forward with legs straight and toes upward. Ensure feet do not turn out and that forward progression is slow (i.e. one foot length progression per strike). The heel of lead leg should break the plane of the opposite knee as you drive leg up if the incumbent hip flexibility and strength is sufficient.           
 


"High Knee's"      

                       
The " high knee" drill is quite possibly one of the most demanding of leg exercises and rarely performed with significant dedication. Effectively the incumbent is running in an exaggerated fashion, whereby raised knee is at or above your hip joints and foot is above the knee of plant leg. Forward progression is slow (i.e. one foot length per "strike") as this exercise is performed starting with five sets over twenty meters / yards and for leaner athletes over a long period of training (i.e. quadrennial) we will work to significant distances.            
           
Each of these movements should be instituted prior to resistance work in training, assuming a standard three-day training week with forty-eight hours between training sessions. In our first stage of training, the movements will be performed with five sets over twenty meters / yards.   



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Disclaimer: The articles featured herein are for informational purposes only and should not be construed as medical advice. Specific medical advice should only be obtained from a licensed health care professional. No liability is assumed by ProSource for any information herein.





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