Back in January I introduced one of the female footballers I'm training Sarah Andrews who has come from a roller derby background of recent times and moved to footy last year for her first season.
As mentioned in her introduction post, she had been almost bolted to ground from her roller derby days with almost zero existence of elastic ability of her muscles and tendons.
Sprinting is like a huge set of rubber bands being pulled back and let go but all the time spend in an isometric semi-squat position for roller derby, and the use of skates to roll on robbed her of running ability.
Our first goal was to get her body to get to know running again so we focused on a lot of tempo runs over at about 90% that focused on total relaxation of her muscles with absolutely zero concern for speed or distance.
All we wanted to do was avoid straining which creates tension and tension slows muscle contractions down.
During this she developed a shin splints, which she has had on and off since she started footy so we needed to back off a bit and space things out better although she was reporting that running felt 100% more comfortable in this time.
She also has had all sorts of issues when her cycle finishes which would leave her totally bed ridden for 3 - 5 days so we also needed to work out a plan around that.
We sat down online style and hashed out a plan for February based on the menstrual cycle post above and it seems to be a winner.
She only had 3 days off which means we were able to get back into full training earlier then expected which is always a good thing.
This is when we actually started up the sprinting speed program.
So far this month she has performed 4 sprinting sessions on her own down in Tassie and this is what had happened:
5m Standing Sprint x 1.63 - 146secs
10m Standing Sprint x 2.65 - 2.50secs
15m Standing Sprint x 3.46 - 3.33secs
20m Standing print x 4.46 - 4.18secs
Flying 5m Sprint x .81 - .76secs
Flying 10m Sprint x 1.67 - 1.60secs
Flying 15m Sprint x 2.56 - 2.43secs
Flying 20m Sprint x 3.48 - 3.23secs
Not bad results in 4 sessions really but she's a hard one to please!
This weekend she came over to Melbourne and we had booked a sprinting session for Saturday except she was all feverish and we cancelled it which was disappointing for me as I wanted to see what we could achieve in person and not on grass that;s up to the middle of your shin.
Low and behold Saturday night she texted letting me know she'd come good and we booked in Sunday morning for the sprint session.
After going through the be activated activation treatment and then running her through an extended warm up to what I'd given her online, we did our normal sled sprints paired with body weight sprints followed by some flying sprints.
Getting back to roller derby stealing her running ability away from her, what it did do that was a positive was to provide her with great strength which also required for putting force into the ground to generate output or horizontal propulsion - something that 99% of women lack.
I could already see from her videos that she sends me that we needed to focus on technique a fair bit so she could use the strength she already had and translate into speed...and we did.
In session 5 with me this morning we improved all those times above except for one!
5m Standing Sprint x 1.63 - 146secs
10m Standing Sprint x 2.65 - 2.50secs...today x 2.44secs
15m Standing Sprint x 3.46 - 3.33secs...today x 3.20secs
20m Standing print x 4.46 - 4.18secs...today x 3.99secs
Flying 5m Sprint x .81 - .76secs...today x .70secs
Flying 10m Sprint x 1.67 - 1.60secs.today x 1.45secs
Flying 15m Sprint x 2.56 - 2.43secs...today x 2.25secs
Flying 20m Sprint x 3.48 - 3.23secs...today x 3.10secs
Fair to say we are both pretty happy with all of that and really all it took was a little bit of technique work to optimise the speed and strength she already had - a hugely underrated part of speed training in my book.
I've still got 9 spot available for a 2 week training trial for women footballers so if you want IMMEDIATE gains like this, then fill in this 30secs application form and I'll be in contact very soon.