Speed Training Drills for Kids: Partner Chase
Speed training drills for kids can help young athlete develop correct technique and beneficial running habits that will stay with them as they grow fully developed muscle and skeletal systems. And these early foundations and early positive memories will follow them into the sports and athletic activities of their adult lives. Kids don’t need speed quite as much as they need smart training programs that foster their competitive drive, teach them what it feels like to push themselves physically, and leave them with positive feelings about running and athletic training.
The best speed training drills for kids are competitive and fun, and with this goal in mind, we offer a series of speed drills for kids on the Kbands Training website including this one, called the Partner Chase drill. This drill is simple to set up and easy to execute, and it tends to inspire a sense of teamwork and competition. It also gives youth athletes a chance to experience the neurological sensation of extreme lightness that takes place for a short time after a sprinting drill that involves artificial resistance.
This drill can be worked into a regular training program for any sport, not just track and field. And it can be useful for teams and individual athletes of any age, including adults. To complete the drill, teams will need only a set of Speed and Agility Cones and a set of Kbands for each participant.
Speed Drills for Kids: Setting Up the Partner Chase Drill
To set up this drill, teams can divide into pairs and coaches can place two speed cones on the ground for each partner pair. The first cone should be slightly closer to the finish line of the short sprint that the athletes will complete, and the second cones should be slightly farther away. Since the athlete who starts from the second cone will be racing to catch up with the partner who has the advantage, coaches will need to be strategic as they determine the distance between the two cones. The cones should be just far enough apart to give the pursuing athlete a reasonable chance of catching up with the first sprinter, but also far enough apart to present a challenge. To determine this distance, coaches will have to factor in the age and athletic experience of both runners.
In the meantime, the young athletes can warm up and place the straps of the Kbands around their upper legs with the logo facing forward and the metal rings on the outside. Then they can clip the Kbands Resistance Bands to the straps in order to create generate resistance in the hip flexors and core during the sprint.
Speed Drills for Kids: Executing the Partner Chase Drill
When the cones are in place and the athletes are ready to begin this speed training drill for kids, the two partners can each stand at their respective cone and begin the sprint in any number of ways. In this case, the two partners can start by facing away from the direction of the sprint and they can begin with a full rotation at the starting signal. (In a more advanced version of the drill, they can begin the sprint and enter the dig phase from a crouching position.)
When the signal is given, both partners will pivot toward the sprinting track and burst into a full run, with the rear partner working to catch up and tag the partner who takes the lead.
Speed Training Drills for Kids: Ways to Make the Drill Effective and Fun
To truly bring out the competitive edge in each of the participants, coaches can choose to focus the drill on either the lead runner or the pursuer. For example, if the drill is focused on the pursuer, her or she will be required to catch and tag the lead partner or face a series of push-ups if this doesn’t happen. If the drill is focused on the lead partner, then he or she will need to stay ahead and keep from being tagged in order to avoid ten push-ups.
The complete drill should involve four to six resisted reps from a standing position for each member of the team, either in a leading or following role. The each partner will compete three resisted reps from a backward position, dropping the left shoulder, then three more resisted reps dropping the right.
After all rounds of resisted reps with the Kbands in place, young athletes can unclip the Kbands Resistance Bands from the straps, and then complete two more reps of the sprinting sequence with no resistance in place. This will provide a great opportunity for young athletes to experience the temporary sensation of extreme lightness that takes place after the artificial resistance has been removed from the muscle groups of the legs and core.
Athletes should be encouraged to have fun with this temporary feeling of lightness while also maintaining proper running form from the beginning of the exercise to the end. As the dig phase begins, runners should try to cover as much ground and accelerate as quickly as possible. Then during the full sprint, they should bring all of their explosive energy to the track and cover the distance at maximum speed. During the entire sprint, the arms should stay fully engaged and bent at a ninety degree angle, the body should lean slightly forward, and the eyes should stay up at all times.
Speed Training Drills for Kids: Final Notes on the Partner Chase Drill
To get started with this drill and a variety of other speed training drills for kids, coaches and athletes can explore the resources on Kbands Training.com. The website offers an extensive set of video drills like this one, plus more information and purchasing details for the Kbands Resistance Bands. The site offers a great 30-day money back guarantee, so pick up a pair of Kbands and start working them into your training program today.