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7 Ways To Get Faster

Any athlete can get faster with the right training, approach, and methods.

It’s true.

In the game of lacrosse, speed is the difference maker.

Here are 7 proven ways you can become a faster athlete, become more of a “stand-out player” on the field, and gain the competitive edge.

1-SPRINT TRAINING.

This seems like common sense, although common sense isn’t always so common. Incorporate hard sprint sessions into your training routine. Short, intense sprints will improve your speed by enhancing your stride length and stride frequency (the 2 key components in getting faster) and also improving motor control aspects of speed development. Focus on explosive starts and maintaining maximum speed for short to medium distances. Sprinting hard in short bursts is challenging and physically demanding, but the more you do it, the faster you will get. Run your reps.

2-GET STRONGER.

I cannot understate the importance of strength. Strength is foundational for speed. Develop your leg muscles through targeted strength training. But it’s not only about leg strength. Full body strength is needed. Exercises such as squats, lunges, kettlebell swings, and plyometrics can enhance your explosive power, contributing to faster acceleration and overall speed. Strength is the underpinning quality of speed development. If you remember one thing, remember that. 

3-IMPROVE YOUR TECHNIQUE.

Technique matters. Technique is essential to optimize your movement efficiency in acceleration and top-end speed. What’s important to know is that proper technique does take time to learn. There are many components to proper technique, which we won’t go into here, but the best way to understand your running technique is through slow motion video analysis with assessment from a qualified coach who can help identify areas for improvement in your technique. If you want to get faster, learn how to improve the technical aspects of speed and acceleration. That alone will be a game-changer.

4-USE INTERVALS.

High-intensity interval training (HIIT) can improve your speed and endurance the right way. Understand that high intensity is hard because it means going “all out” for a short time. Alternate between short bursts of intense effort and periods of rest or lower intensity. This type of training improves your cardiovascular fitness and helps you sustain faster speeds. There is significant research on the many benefits of high-intensity training, including favorable body composition changes, improved cardiovascular health, and improved oxygen capacity among other benefits. Interval training also trains the right muscle fiber type (our type-2 muscle fiber which is critical for speed and explosiveness.)

5-DEVELOP CORE STRENGTH.

Having a strong “core” is critical to running fast and efficient mechanics . If your core muscles are weak, you will have faulty running technique and other muscle groups have to overcompensate. If the core is unstable, you lose speed. Just so understand, your core muscles are the spinal stabilizers and the muscles around the hips. Understand that core strength is a pillar of speed performance. A strong core means strong performance and minimizing risk for injury. 

6-APPLY FORCE.

While strength is foundational to speed, knowing how to apply force off the ground is the next level. First, you have to have the baseline of strength. Then, knowing how to express force application in acceleration, deceleration, top-end speed, and change of direction is the elite phase in speed development. Force equals fast. Understand force application and you will fly. 

7-REST AND RECOVERY.

Recovery is often the forgotten variable in speed development. It is so important to allow for adequate time for rest and recovery. Overtraining will limit progress and increase the risk of injury. Include rest days in your training schedule, prioritize quality sleep, and consider activities like foam rolling or cold water immersion to aid recovery. And let’s not forget that proper nutrition to fuel the body and help recover and repair is also essential.


The bottom line is this.

Consistent, strategic, focused, and progressive training, along with proper nutrition and recovery, is the key to achieving and maintaining increased speed. 

It’s highly advisable to consult with a qualified coach to assess your performance and design a speed training program to your specific needs and goals.

Coach Scott

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