Sprinting Form Drills

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Form sprinting drills help establish correct neuromuscular movement patterns. Establishing as an error-free movement pattern as possible may improve both stride rate and stride length. Doing this will eliminate any wasted energy that does not contribute to forward movement.

Bounding Drills

Bounding drills are designed to develop the explosive leg power required during starting. These types of drills are stressful enough to be a workout by themselves, or they may be included in a workout. They should never be used as warm-up or cool-down drills.

Straight Bounding
Begin with a slow jog and try to bound as high a possible using a running form that emphasizes a high-knee lift. Land on the opposite leg and continue bounding down the field. Start by performing 1 set of 4 bounds per leg and work up to 3 sets of 10 with each leg.

Outside Bounding
This drill is similar to straight bounding except the foot is placed laterally outside the normal landing position and the body is projected laterally, as well as, up and forward. Use this drill only after straight bounding has been perfected.

Inside Bounding
This drill is similar to outside bounding except that the foot is placed laterally inside the normal landing position, and the body is projected laterally, as well as, up and forward. This drill should only be used after you have perfected straight bounding.

Sprinting Drills

These drills are designed to develop the mechanics, strength, and power needed to produce maximum performance in sprinting. They are designed for use while warming up before the workout. The length and difficulty of each drill can be altered to any desired distance and intensity.

Butt Kickers
From a jog, the lower leg is allowed to swing back and to bounce off the buttocks. The upper leg should not move much. Place emphasis on allowing (not Forcing) the heel to come up to the butt.

Wall Slide
From a jog, the action is the same as for butt kickers except that the heel of the recovery leg must not travel behind the body. Imagine that there is a wall of glass running down the back, and do not allow the heel action to break the glass. This action will produce knee lift without forcing the action. As in butt kickers, when this drill is done properly, the heel will bounce off the butt.

Start And Sprint
From a stationary position, start quickly, and feel the power being applied behind your body. Ten yards out, quickly shift from running in the back of your body to sprinting in front of the body. This drill should emphasize the difference between starting technique (behind the body) and sprinting technique (in front of the body)

Quick Feet Drill
From a jog, increase your stride rate so that you take as many steps as possible in a 10-yard interval. Jog 10 yards and repeat. Emphasize quick turnover with the legs moving in front of, not behind or under, the body.

Workout Drills

These drills are designed to be a workout, or part of a workout. Typically three sets of each drill are performed. Start each drill on your toes and make an effort to remain in this position throughout the drill.

Leaning against a wall, bar, or any other support, one leg is cycled through in a sprinting manner. Emphasize keeping the leg from extending behind the body and allow the foot to kick the buttocks during recovery and paw at the ground to complete the action. Perform 10 cycles per leg per set.

Butt Kickers
This drill is the same as butt kickers in the sprinting drills except emphasize more quickness. perform 10 kicks per set.

Down And Offs
From a high knee position, the emphasis is to decrease your foot/ground contact by hitting the ground with the ball of the foot and getting it off as fast as possible. In turn, the effort on the ground should bounce your leg up into the high knee position. Ten down and offs make one set.

Pull Throughs
Extending the leg in front of the body (like a hurdler), the leg is then brought down and through the ground contact in a power motion. Ten pull-throughs with each leg make one set.

High Knee Drill
In a quick foot ladder, have the athlete sprint through the ladder as fast as possible, touching one foot in each rung of the ladder. Emphasize high knee lift and quick ground contact. One time through the ladder is one set.

African Dance
While running forward, raise each leg to the side of your body as in hurdling, and tap each heel with your hand. Start this drill easily and gradually increase the intensity. 10 yards of this drill is one set.

Drum Major
While running forward, rotate your leg inward to the midline of the body and tap your heel at the midline. one 10-yard run is one set.


Shawn Dassie, MS, CSCS
Sprinting Pro Trainer
Director Of Physical Enhancement
Siouxland Acceleration: Fitness & Athletic Enhancement

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