Yohan Blake is now a threat to topple the sprint reign of his compatriot Usain Bolt.
Bolt looked hurt in the race, but Blake looked phenomenal. Great power and finesse combined in one.
It is obvious by looking at Blake that a lot of his speed is due to great power and strength. So, for all you slow people, if you want to run faster than you ever have – hit the weight room and build a good base of strength and power.
Yohan Blake’s training consists of a lot of weightlifitng and power movements. Power cleans, Snatches, and traditional Front squats and Deadlifts with Overhead presses are the core foundation for power. With this power, you will tear up the track. Train for stregth and power, then train that strength and power to move fast.
Video of Race
Yohan Blake’s 9.75 is something to behold due to his age of 22, and done this early in the season. If he stays healthy, he will go 9.6
1. Low Body Fat – Have you ever seen overweight sprinters? No
2. A High Strength to Body weight ratio – KEY POINT! When you are strong and light, with low body-fat, gravity cannot hold you down. Obviously it is more than just strength, but a good strength base is the key to all movement. I believe this 100%.
This strength has nothing to do with how much one can squat and bench, it has more to do with ‘functional’ strength. In other words, develop all strength qualities as possible.
A mix of explosive Olympic lifting, Kettle-bell training, Traditional Strength exercises, and stability strength building will unlock power and this translates to speed.
What makes Usain Bolt so freakishly fast?
Perfect biomechanics. There has never been a sprinter his height with a turnover of a shorter sprinter. Usain Bolt also has a lot of natural functional strength. Running the hills of Jamaica taxes the body like no other exercise. Another explanation from well known sports physiologists….
Corey Hart, an exercise physiologist with the Physio Performance Lab in Boise, Idaho, chalks that up to Bolt’s dorsiflexion, the way the foot flexes toward the shin, while walking or running. This may predispose him not to put his heel too close to the ground, which would make him lose energy.
“Sprinters run on their forefeet,” he says. “When you think about sprinting, you resist the force that goes into the ground by not putting the heel down.”
Dan Cipriani, a professor of exercise science at San Diego State University, thinks one of the keys to Bolt’s success may lie in what he does specifically during push-off, when his foot is in plantar flexion, or the movement of the foot away from the shin — the opposite of dorsiflexion. “The way he’s able to propel himself forward, I would assume he has very good plantar flexion strength and speed.” source
Weightlifting or not, good functional Body strength and stability is the foundation for speed generation.
You can develop full functional body strength with exercises such as push-ups, one legged squats, core training, and pull-ups.
Once you develop a high level of body weight strength, then you can move onto more traditional advanced weight lifting.
Here is Usain Bolt doing a traditional explosive weight movement – the Hang Clean.
If you really want to increase your speed, you will need a structured training program. One of the best, informative training programs is from my good friend Jack . Jack has taught all I know about training and with his help I was able to knock off .3 tenths off my 40 yard dash time in 3 months. Check out Jack’s amazing program.
To run faster – believe it or not – the arms play a significant role in sprinting and speed development.
We cannot disregard proper arm mechanics within your speed-training program; your potential will be limited. Speed comes when the whole body is in sync, and the arms dictate that action.
The role of the arms is to stabilize the torso so that power can continue to be efficiently transferred through the hips. It is this ability to transfer power effectively through the center of mass that not only improves rate of acceleration, but also facilitates reaching maximum velocity, maintaining those top speeds and reducing the rate of deceleration in a full speed race.
The arms both directly and indirectly influence the ability to run fast.
Specifics of arm movement:
When running fast, it’s very important to keep your hands relaxed. Think about holding a potato chip in each hand. No matter how hard you run, no matter how tired you get, you can’t clench your hands so that the potato chip breaks. This is a reminder about how loose your hands should be at all times when sprinting`. When you clench your fists tightly, that tightness spreads through your forearms, biceps, shoulders, neck and face. Once you tighten up and lose range of motion in your arms, it reduces stride length, therefore decreasing your speed.
It is important to get a full range of power with the arms. Speed is a product of stride length and stride frequency. Stride length and frequency are determined, in part, by the motion of the arms.