Hip Exercises For Runners | Speed Workouts
When developing a speed training program there are a lot of different methods utilized to increase speed. First, you have weighted resistance sleds, or anchored sprints. Second, acceleration training comes into play. Third, athletes will complete plyometric step sequences to increase the mind body connection and help with foot speed. One element that is often overlooked is the hips. The hips are very important when translating power from the ground through the torso accelerating the body forward. Without strong hips, power generated off the ground will leave the body and not create forward momentum. The video below is a great representation of a hip exercise that you should be completing.
What Creates A Good Hip Speed Drill
Proper alignment is the most important element of hip training. You can focus on hip flexors or lateral movements to target specific muscle groups in the hips. During this specific drill you will notice a concentration on the hip flexors. Each working set will include ballistic movements with explosive repetitions contracting the hip flexors rapidly. By training the hip flexors in this manner, you will generate more force then running. When running, athletes often begin to stride out as they accelerate. This specific drill continues to challenge stride turnover. Rapidly contracting the hip flexors over and over will help build strength and explosiveness.
Should You Complete Static Hip Flexor Holds
Static holds for the hip flexors will help build strength. The problem with this method of training is that athletes will not mimic sprinting motions. Over the past 10 years the sporting world has increased athleticism greatly by completing sports specific training. When completing a static hold, athletes will simply hold a resistance band around their foot and hold their knee near 90°. Of course you will feel a large burn in your hip flexor when doing this exercise. The problem is that athletes will not cycle over contracting and relaxing the muscle rapidly. Without challenging the mind body connection and increasing stride frequency athletes will not translate their strength gains to the field. Static holds can be and effective rehabilitation exercise, but ballistic training has shown much better results when it comes to increasing speed.
Should You Complete Hip Exercises After An Injury
As mentioned above static holds are a great place to start when coming back from an injury. These controlled movements will help build muscle and stability in the area. It is necessary to work back slowly from an injury. Often times athletes rush back to ballistic movements and re-injure themselves. Hip injuries can be some of the hardest to come back from. It is important that athletes that have hip injuries get cleared from the doctor before beginning any types of ballistic movement such as this exercise. When you are cleared from the doctor begin completing this drill without resistance first. Also, complete this exercise with shorter rep directions. Five sets of 10 seconds is a great work out for an athlete coming off of an injury. If you are fresh, follow the repetition is listed in the video.
Other Exercises For The Hips
A great addition to any hip flexor drill is going to be anchored sprinting. By completing drag sprints you will develop power off the ground. The more power you have off the ground the better you will be able to drive through full range of motion in your hips. This full range of motion will lead to a longer stride length. Stride length and stride frequency are the key ingredients to sprinting faster. Take a look at our Victory Ropes which is a great tool utilized to anchor athletes as a sprint.
Plyometrics Training Equipment