15 Sprint Technique Tips That Will Help You Coach Young Athletes
Below are 15 sprinting technique tips. This is by no means meant to be an exhaustive list but it should provide a comprehensive introduction to what good sprinting technically looks like.
1. Regardless of the phase of sprinting, you should be able to draw a straight line from the ankle of the supporting leg through the knee and hip, then another through the torso and head.
2. A vigorous and coordinated arm action is necessary during all phases of sprinting.
3. The angle of the elbow should increase (open) slightly on the back swing and decrease (close) slightly on the forward swing.
4. The arm action should be straight forward and backward; never side-to-side. The hands should not cross the mid-line of the body.
5. The arms should pivot from the shoulder and not involve excessive bending and straightening at the elbow. Some flexion and extension of the elbow joint will occur.
Leg & Foot Action
6. The foot should remain in a “toes up” position throughout the running cycle except when the foot is in contact with the ground.
7. As the foot leaves the ground, it follows a straight line up towards the buttocks.
8. The knee lifts so that the thigh is almost parallel to the ground.
9. The support leg completely extends through the hip, knee and ankle.
10. Avoid placing the foot too far in front of the body; this will cause a “braking” effect. (See the image below).
11. The feet should point straight ahead.
12. Use light, quick movements.
13. The body should have a forward lean during acceleration.
14. The lean should come from the ankles, not the hips.
15. At maximum speed the body should be erect and tall.
Can you add to the above list?
Do you have any sprint technique tips that you would add to the above list? I would love to hear from you. Share your tip by leaving a reply/comment or by using the below contact details.
10 of the Biggest Mistakes Young Athletes Make When Sprinting
A Fun Sprints Lesson Plan for Kids
The Fundamentals That Will Make Kids Faster
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Darren Wensor is a sports development professional, coach educator, specialist coach of young athletes, and founder of the blog coachingyoungathletes.com. Learn more about him here and connect with him on Twitter, Facebook, Linkedin, or via email. Check out Coaching Young Athletes on YouTube, the Coaching Young Athletes podcast, and the Coaching Young Athletes E-Book Series.