I’m going to walk you through a full top speed training session I recently did with some of my professional football athletes. Let’s get into it:
It’s the beginning of the off-season for football and whether it’s CFL, XFL, USFL, or NFL, a lot of the guys are just starting to come together for off-season training. During this period of time, I really like to focus on reestablishing critical patterns that they perform at top speed so that we can enhance speed and have better quality through repetition down the line.
During this initial stage of off-season, it may even look as though I’m training them as track athlete. This can be really helpful for those athletes in skill positions, who reach top speeds on the field. My whole goal is to make them more efficient at top speed so we end up spending a lot of time drilling movements as if they were actually on a track.
I always like to start our training sessions by elevating the lower limb through a series of activation drills:
- Single Leg Pogos
- Heel Walks
Once you’re more warmed up, we’ll move activation up the leg and into the hips and knees:
- Single Leg Hops
- Power Hops (horizontal and vertical)
- Straight Leg Bounds
My whole goal here is fire up the nervous system for the movements and muscles that we’re going to utilize. This is done by training specific patterns, while also working to turn on the muscles needed for quality work that we’ll be focusing on down the line:
- Piston Runs
- High Knee Runs
- High Knee – Butt Kick Runs
- Step Over Runs
Plyometric Top Speed Drills
- Power A-Skips
- Power B-Skips
This is where you’ll focus on putting the full stride together. Think of top speed, or maximum velocity as a reaction. That’s why I want you as an athlete to focus on allowing those patterns that we just drilled over and over again, to take over as you sprint.
- Ex: Full sprint with a focus on cycling the legs and keep the feet light as if you’re “running on water”
- For more, use this top speed training progression.
This was meant to walk you through a top speed training session, great to perform at the start of your off-season. This isn’t the time to add in anything too fancy, but rather focus on re-establishing strong sprint patterns.
You can watch as I go through the full session with pro athletes below:
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And a bunch more.
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If you’re serious about your speed, you should probably be doing the same.
You can find more info on Athletic Speed System below: