More times than not sprinters will run with their fist clinched. They feel this helps them to run harder because their are trying to muscle their way down the track. This usually leads to tight shoulders translating to limited range of motion.
Encourage your athletes to practice soft or neutral hands while they run. This will allow for an improved elastic response and range of motion.
Foot Position in Blocks
Wow! This is an interesting topic in sprinting. Getting out of the blocks is very important.
Just as important as you getting in the blocks. At track adiktz we've seen a lot starting block positions.
You've heard about shin angels, hip height, pad and arm placement but not so much about foot placement. Here we're going to focus on where it all starts.
First, Place your pads appropriately (see pad placement article).
Feet in pads:
Second, Place your feet in the pads. Be sure to firmly place the balls of your feet in the pads. Rear foot first front foot second.
As you settle into the "on your marks" position you'll feel your feet firmly planted against the pads.
Here is where it gets tricky some athletes place their toes on the ground while the balls of their feet are flexed pressing into the pads. Other athletes place their foot in the pad with toes not touching the ground (i.e. the top edge of their toe aligned with the edge of the pad)
Our advice here is to use which ever method is most comfortable for the athlete based on the flexibility of their Achilles and ankle.
Keeping in mind the goal of having the athletes heal flexed and pressings against the full surface of the pads, no empty space when the athletes come to set.
Relax your shoulders
You want cover more ground with each stride? Relax your shoulders so you can get maximum displacement. Sprinters tend to want to muscle their way down the track thinking this will make them quicker. This usually leads to tight shoulders limiting range of motion in your arms and legs.
Relax and let the speed come naturally.