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GAINcast Episode 230: The dawgfather (with Ken Shannon)

Over three decades of coaching at the University of Washington, coach Ken Shannon quietly developed one of the most successful and diverse stable of field event athletes in the country and was a key influence on Vern’s own approach to training and weight lifting. On this week’s episode coach Shannon joins us to discuss his own development as a coach, throwing technique, and advice for young coaches.

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GAINcast Episode 229: The coach’s coach (with Kevin McGill)

Behind every coach are their influences. When it comes to the throwing events, one quiet coach behind the scenes has been one of the most influential voices in closing the gap between America and the rest of the world in the hammer throw and other throwing events. Kevin McGill has been on a lifelong quest to learn about the throwing events and share his knowledge with others. On this week’s GAINcast he shares some stories and lessons from his journey.

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GAINcast Episode 228: Fitting the event (with Trevor Painter and Jenny Meadows)

Too often we have a concept of how to train for a sport or event and use that as the starting point for the plan. We fit the athlete to the event. That works in some cases, but other times you need to fit the event to the athlete. In no event is that more important than the 800 meters, where athletes come from a wide variety of training and physiological backgrounds. On this week’s episode coach Trevor Painter and former elite 800 meter runner Jenny Meadows join us to share some examples of fitting the event to an athlete, 800 meters training, and more.

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August/September 2021 in review: Olympic debrief

The site theme in August and September was debriefing the Olympics. Our team of contributors put together 7 new articles and 5 podcasts looking at difference aspects of the performances, coaching, lessons learned, and more. Find links to all of the new resources below.

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Analyzing the Olympic 100-meter sprints

As always, the whole world was focused on athletics this summer at the Tokyo Olympics took place. Within the athletics program, the men’s and women’s 100 meters were the in the spotlight. Behind the historic performances is a treasure trove of data that helps look in more detail at the event, learn about it, and identify the latest trends in sprinting. Below are some insights on overall performance levels, how well maximum velocity and acceleration correlate, top speed, speed loss, race modeling, and more.

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GAINcast Episode 223: Limitations on speed

What is keeping us from going faster? Ironically, a lot of times it is what we are doing rather than what we aren’t doing. What we other think is helping our speed can be counterproductive. On this week’s GAINcast we discuss some concepts that might be limiting your speed training, as well as methods and planning tips for getting faster.

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GAINcast Episode 222: Olympic insights

The Olympic Games just wrapped up last week. Along with some amazing performances comes some great lessons on performance, coaching, sport, and life. On this week’s GAINcast we sit down to share some of our insights after reflecting on the Tokyo Olympics.

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GAINcast Episode 203: Speed reserve (with Gareth Sandford)

Middle-distance running requires a unique interplay of aerobic and anaerobic energetics. Historically, however, research on the events has centered on the aerobic side. Physiologist Gareth Sandford has sought to correct that imbalance by looking in detail at anaerobic speed reserve. He joins this week’s GAINcast to discuss his work and look at how to profile athletes and develop individualized training for complex events.

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Track & field dual meets: some thoughts

The dual meet was the cornerstone of an athlete’s development for years in track & field. For a variety of reasons, the dual meet has all but disappeared in track and field at all levels. I have heard all the arguments for abandoning dual meets and I didn’t then or now ever agree with them. Read more

Gaincast Episode 157: Find the right fit (with John Baumann)

Supporting a track and field team might sound like a simple enough, but when you look a bit closer you see it can often mean helping 100 athletes competing in vastly different sports. John Baumann knows the sport inside and out, having helped develop NCAA champions as both a technical coach and strength coach. He joins this week’s GAINcast to talk about his work as the head strength and conditioning coach for the University of Kansas track and field team, how he learned from his background as a throws coach, and finding the right program for athletes from varied backgrounds and diverse events. Read more