I have had many questions lately regarding sprint drills. Whether or not I use them, how I use them etc? The following is an article I wrote several years ago for the the Australian publication Modern Athlete and Coach. I think it will shed light on the why and how of the Mach drill system. I have used this drills extensively over the years with great success, of late I have also incorporated some of the Bosch drill system. The combination of the two if used properly are of great benefit.
About Vern Gambetta
Entries by Vern Gambetta
There is no substitute for focused directed work with a purpose. Certainly just doing more work is not necessarily better. Have a laser like focus. Know specifically what you want to achieve. Make every exercise, drill, run, jump or throw count by having specific measurable objectives for each element of training.
Not sure if complexification is a word in the English language but I see it more and more in training especially with young coaches impressed with their knowledge. It is easy to make things complicated and complex. It takes wisdom and understanding to make things simple and clear. Training to improve performance is a relatively straightforward process.
How many of you walk into the gym, out to the field or onto pool deck with today’s workout as an end unto itself, looking for that one great workout that will make a difference? If you do then think again, today’s workout must fit in the context of the whole training plan. Think of it as one pixel in a mega pixel picture.
Being ready to deliver on the day – The ability to have your athletes ready to perform at their best at the required time is most important. That can be the final of the Olympic games or a high school state championship. Everything is directed to this goal.
We may think we are training the body but we are really training the brain – To borrow Tim Noakes terminology the brain is the “Central governor” it controls everything we do.
I was very fortunate to have many great opportunities to learn and share ideas in the past year. My top three experiences for 2012 were:
Each year at this time of year I look back on the previous year just completed and as I get older I find myself looking back increasingly over years gone past. I do this not for nostalgic reason rather I do it to gain perspective to more forward.
The Leg Circuit is a tool I devised out of need around twenty-five years ago. It is placed in a training following the Foundational Leg phase. I have used it in many sports. It is a versatile tool if used properly. The Leg Circuit is the foundation for more specific work to follow in terms of absolute strength and plyometrics. This is a program to pu the finishing touches on a foundational strength and power endurance base. It is also a very useful tool to use in lower extremity injury rehabilitation to rebuild work capacity in preparation for return to play. The basic prerequisite for progressing to heavier lifting and high level plyometrics is the ability to perform five full leg circuits without stopping. When an athlete has progressed to this point they are ready!
Stephan Widmer is the Head Coach Queensland State Swimming Centre. I first met Stephan in 1999 at training camp in Australia. I was able to visit with him again this past spring and catch up. The opportunity to watch him coach a session last May was one of the highlights of the last year for me. He was trained in Switzerland in a classical physical/coaching curriculum with a great blend of practical exposure to teaching methodology and sport science. You certainly see this reflected in his coaching.