Sports Science Monthly – March 2018

In the March edition of Sports Science Monthly we look at new research across a variety of areas including the impact of coaching behavior, Selye’s General Adaptation Syndrome, nordic hamstring exercises, genetic testing, monitoring fatigue and more. Read more

Searching for transfer in Fiji

Earlier this month I wrote that transfer is not as straightforward as it seems, even with something as simple as linear speed. In response, some coaches, such as rugby coach John Pryor, have rethought their approach to training speed and strength. Pryor is currently the head of strength and conditioning for Fiji in the lead-up to next year’s World Cup. We’ve written several times about his approach to training speed, and he’ll cover the topic again at GAIN 2018 in June, but a few weeks ago I had a chance to talk to him about the process that got him there. Read more

Does off-field speed transfer to on-field speed?

This month’s theme on HMMR Media is transfer of training, and to kick it off I thought I would take a timely example of just how complex transfer can be. What you think has carry over to your sport is not always as simple as it seems. Read more

Two great sprinters

Two great sprinters died within weeks of each other in the fall of 2017. You would have be close to my age and a real track nut to know who they were. These two sprinters had a huge influence on my interest in speed and how to get people to run faster. Their best years came within a four-year span from 1961 to 1965. Both were small in stature, if you saw them in street clothes you would never guess they were world class athletes. Their small stature disguised incredible power and explosiveness. Neither ever lifted weights. One was white and one was African American. They were both linked to the great Bob Hayes. Hayes was the physical opposite of both of them. Read more

Looking back on 2017: top training resources

Last year was a busy one for HMMR Media. Throughout the course of 2017 we produced over 100 podcasts, over 300 articles, and 14 premium videos from our team of expert coaches and distinguished guests. To help you sort through all the great content, we’ve assembled our top 25 articles, 10 podcasts, and 5 videos from the year. If you want more, you can browse our archives and also check out our top posts from 2013, 2014, 2015 and 2016. Read more

Sports Science Monthly – November 2017

This month, we start with a lengthily mini-review, looking at gaining a fuller understanding of how exercise causes adaptation. This is obviously paramount to coaches, because causing adaptations is what we’re interesting in; being able to understand the underpinnings of this can be useful. It gets a little heavy in places, but keep going and I’m sure you’ll find something useful within it. After that, we move back into the regular format; this month, we have a closer look at massage, repeated sprints as a marker of hamstring rehabilitation status, and the 24-hour athlete, along with a rapid-fire round-up at the end. Read more

How embracing risk helps you control it

I recently came across an interesting book by Greg Ip titled Foolproof: Why Safety Can Be Dangerous and How Danger Makes Us Safe. It’s a fascinating look at the balance between risk mitigation and risk adaptation, both of which compete to either make us safer, or more at risk than before. Read more

GAINcast Episode 89: How Speed Happens (with Peter Weyand)

There are some basic questions out there that are difficult to answer, such as what limits human running speed. As technology advances, scientists can better study and start to answer this and other simple questions like what makes one athlete faster than another. Dr. Peter Weyand has spent decades researching locomotion on both animals and humans. His work with elite sprinters has brought some interesting conclusions and is driving the field forward. On this episode of the GAINcast he joins us to discuss his research and its practical implications. Read more

Thoughts from Litvinov and McMahon on accelerating the hammer

Biomechanists can break down how the hammer is accelerated, but one thing they can’t do is determine what is going on in an athlete’s mind to perform the actions they see. What does the athlete think about? How do they try an initiate the movement? This is an area that intrigues me and I’ve been chatting with elite hammer throwers recently to find out their approach. There is no one right answer here, but hearing different viewpoints gives you more tools you can use as a coach. Read more

Why Did Usain Bolt Lose?

Athletics fans love statistics, and I’m no different, which is why it was so exciting to hear that the IAAF and Leeds Becket University were to collaborate on a biomechanics project at the recent World Championships, giving us some insight into what makes up a world class performance in athletics. As the Championships finished last weekend, the first initial reports were released for the men’s 100m and 10,000m, men’s discus final, and women’s pole vault final, which you can find here. The extended analysis will come in time, but the initial analysis does contain plenty of interesting bits of information. As my athletics knowledge is primarily limited to the sprints, that is where I’ll focus. The initial report itself does a great job of presenting the pertinent points, but I hope to add a little extra context where possible. Read more