Speed Training

For Track and Field

Principles of Track Workouts For Speed

Speed Development

  • All runners need speed
  • Great sprinters have 100-400 meter range
  • Sprint fast in training to sprint fast in competition

Training Elements

  • Train to race and compete
  • Train race tempo
  • Train strength and power
  • Train athlete abilities
  • Train race specific speed

Training Sprinters

  • Acceleration Phase
  • Maximum Velocity Phase
  • Training Methods
  • Planning Overview
  • Quality over Quantity

Types of Track Workouts For Speed

Acceleration Phase

Train to overcome inertia from static position

Train rhythm of the run with acceleration line drill

Acceleration training with starts

  •  2-point start
  • Rolling start
  • 3-point start
  • 4-point start
  • Block starts
  • Half starts
  • Resistance starts (10-40 meters)

Maximum Velocity Phase

Train top end speed

Develop higher tolerance for faster paces

Train in 20-30 meter segments

Use various build in distances

Acceleration 20-40 meters + 20-30 meters Max Velocity

Train maximum velocity rhythm with wicket drills

Acceleration and Maximum Velocity Training Methods

  • Ins and outs
  • Resisted runs
  • Assisted runs
  • Power training

Ins and outs

30-meter acceleration sprint 10-15 meters – off 15-20 meters – sprint 10-15 meters (3-4 minute recovery)

Sprint phase: go for maximum speed, maintain sprint mechanics

Off phase: decrease intensity and cadence, maintain body positions

*use cones for changes in speed

Resisted Runs

  • Weight vest (up to 10% body weight)
  • Sleds (pulling weight) combine with start options
  • Hills (short or long depending on training component)
  • Stairs (develop acceleration and max velocity)

(3-4 minute recovery)

*change the intensity with more weight or higher slope grade

Assisted Runs

  • Bungee and pulley for over-speed
  • Downhill sprints 1.5- 3% slope grade

*60 meters or less (under 6 seconds)

* speed within 10% of personal best

Power Development For Speed Training

Power Training (Jumps)

  • Standing long jump
  • Standing triple jump
  • 3 double leg jumps
  • 5 double leg jumps
  • 10 double leg jumps

Power Training (Bounding)

  • Acceleration bounds
  • Max velocity bounds
  • Single leg bounds
  • Speed bounds
  • Long bounds 

Power Training (Throws)

  • Overhead shot throw for distance
  • Forward shot throw for distance
  • Forward medicine ball throw for height
  • Hammer style throws for distance

Power Training (Jump/Throw Combo’s)

  • Hop – hop – forward shot throw
  • Hop – hop overhead throw
  • Backward hop – backward hop – overhead throw
  • Backward hop – backward hop – forward throw
  • Hop – hop – throw for height

Power Training (Jump and/or Throw/Sprint combo’s)

  • Hop – hop – forward throw into sprint 10 meters
  • 3 double leg hops into sprint 10 meters
  • Forward throw –into sprint 20 meters
  • Acceleration bounds 10 meters into sprint 10 meters 

View More Sprint Training Articles and Videos

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