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Analyzing the Speed Requirements of a Sport

by Developing Speed
Kinetic Select May 2017

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While analyzing the speed requirements of different sports may, at first, seem to be a massive challenge, asking a few key questions can make the task much simpler.

The following is an exclusive excerpt from the book Developing Speed, published by Human Kinetics. All text and images provided by Human Kinetics.

Analyzing the Speed Requirements of a Sport

Developing effective gamespeed requires an understanding of the sport in which an athlete needs to apply speed. Clearly, there are differences between sports, and this can be made even more complex by the differences between playing positions within the same sport. Additionally, with the massive range of activities that take place within field and team sports, analyzing speed application can be complicated.

While analyzing the speed requirements of different sports may at first seem a massive challenge, asking a few key questions can make the task much simpler. Working through the following questions will reveal a clear picture of the speed requirements of a specific sport, which in turn are addressed through a well-planned development program.

  • • What distances are typically run?
  • • In what direction does movement typically occur?
  • • What are the typical starting methods?
  • • What are the typical movement combinations?
  • • What stimuli trigger and control movement?
  • • How does speed relate to sort-specific skills and requirements?
  •  

These questions provide a framework on which to build a speed development program consisting of exercises and drills that maximize the transfer of basic speed qualities into sport-specific gamespeed.

With Developing Speed, the National Strength and Conditioning Association has created the definitive resource for developing speed training programs that optimize athletic performance. Including assessments and the application of speed training to eight specific sports, this authoritative guide provides all the tools needed for maximizing speed. The book is available in bookstores everywhere, as well as online at the NSCA Store.

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