Kbands Jump Split Track And Field Drill
At the beginner level, track and field athletes rely on strength and condition in the hip flexors for explosivity at the starting line and sustained energy throughout the race. For the first few seasons of serious running, fast sprinting, and developing the balance and coordination necessary to tackle a set of hurdles, runners can concentrate on practice and repetition. But as an athlete becomes more advanced and the muscles of the hip and upper leg become stronger, the runner may need a set of more intense exercises, moves that target certain muscle groups and push the body into a workout that an ordinary running stride may not be able to provide.
Drills to improve power (or flexibility, or agility) sometimes take place off the track and benefit from the addition of artificial tension applied to the muscle groups in question. The drill demonstrated in this video, call the Kbands jump split, is designed to attack fast twitch muscle development in the hip flexors and upper legs. But this drill involves added resistance and is fairly intense, so beginners may want to skip this move for now. The benefits of this drill will happen faster for track and field athletes who already have a well-developed core and a strong sense of explosivity and balance. Hurdlers and advanced sprinters can add this drill to a regular training routine in order to improve technique and add power and dimension to an already strong stride.
Kbands Jump Split Speed Training Drill: Setting Up the Drill
This drill requires nothing but a set of Kbands for each participant and some space to move freely, either outdoors on a track or indoors in a gym. After each runner has spent some time warming up and stretching properly, focusing attention on the hips and upper legs, the Kbands can be attached. While applying the straps to the leg just above the knee, athletes should remember to keep the label facing forward and the metal rings on the outside. The resistance bands can be clipped to the rings once the straps are in place.
Kbands Jump Split Training Drill: Executing the Drill
This jump split training drill will begin with three powerful, explosive reps. In the video, the athlete executes them very quickly, but this drill is far from simple. Proper technique will be essential to success, so track and field athletes should concentrate on body position from the beginning of every rep to the end.
In three short bursts, the runner will leave the ground and extend the right leg forward, striving for a 90 degree angle between the body line and the line of the upper leg from hip to knee. Meanwhile, the left leg will extend backward. The right knee and the left knee will reach maximum separation, pulling against the applied resistance of the Kbands.
Full extension will bring more meaningful benefits from this drill, and full extension will be more likely if athletes maintain their balance, knee drive, and engage the arms. As always, lazy arms will equate to lazy legs, so the arms should stay bent at the elbow and in full motion with each repetition of the drill.
The stretch reflex concept will also contribute to the success of this drill. Both the departure from the ground and the landing will play a role in the development of the athletes running stride. At the lift off, athletes and coaches should pay attention to dorsi flexion and plantar flexion and should make sure the feet are properly aligned and balanced.
Athletes should work to gain as much height as possible during the jump, and then execute an exaggerated split at the peak of the jump. The hips should be extended as widely as possible, and then they should return to a closed position for the landing.
Kbands Jump Split Track and Field Drill: Sets and Reps
For three quick reps in a row, with no pause between each rep, the right leg should move forward and the left leg should move back. Then athletes should take a few seconds of rest and reverse the move, executing three quick reps with the left leg forward and the right leg extending behind the body. After three jumps for each side, athletes can take a short break, and then they can complete the entire process again. So this portion of the drill involves two sets of six resisted reps each.
After two sets of three reps on each side, athletes can unclip the bands from the straps and complete one more set (three jumps on each side) with no resistance in place. During this final set, the legs will feel unnaturally light, and athletes can use this temporary sensation to fully extend each stride and let the legs move freely. As with the resisted sets, athletes should work hard to gain as much distance from the ground as possible at each jump. Both the distance from the ground and the extension of the split will be critical to the success of this drill. And as athletes develop strength in the hips and core, both of these should gradually increase.
Speed will also be critical to the success of this drill. If athletes move slowly off the ground or attack the reps with less than total explosivity, this drill won’t have a very strong impact on fast twitch muscle development. Athletes should concentrate on height, speed and drive-through, and then take the benefits of the drill to the track during sprints and longer runs.
After a few weeks of aggressive resistance training, athletes will notice clear differences in the height, confidence, and explosivity of the stride. These changes will start in the hips and carry through to the feet, core, and upper body. For more powerful resistance training drill like this one and more ways to apply the targeted tension of the Kbands and improve times on the track, visit Kbands Training.com and explore the track and field training section of the site.
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