Greetings! My name is Eoin Everard. I am a chartered physiotherapist with a PhD in human movement and have been an Irish International Athlete for the past 20 years. I have ran sub 4 minutes for the mile, below 14 minutes for 5k and sub 30 minutes for 10K. I am also the current O35 3000m European Masters Champion.
What is sprinting?
Sprinting or running strides is essentially just trying to go at an increased pace from a normal jogging pace. It does not have to be 100% sprinting or effort; it just has to be intentionally trying to go faster than your normal run, especially if you are not used to sprinting.
What’s the best way to add it to your workout routine?
First don’t sprint at 100 percent. I would recommend trying to go out at 90% effort, as opposed to going to 100% due to the increased chance of injury at 100%. There are a couple of ways you can add sprinting or strides to your workout routine. First, you can add them to a warm-up before other running training. So, if you wanted, you could do your jogging, stretches, and afterwards do 3 to 6 100 metre strides, intentionally picking up the pace. Another place you can add to the session is at the start or after a run. So, if you go for a run, you might want to do some strides or hill sprints after a run. And generally, you recommend either 4 by 15 seconds with a walk-back recovery or six by 10 seconds. Finally, you can do a sprinting session. Doing 10 x 30 second hill sprints is a great way to get the legs moving fast, activating all the muscles of the legs and arms while the core keeps your trunk stable. Try not to them with more than a 10 to 20 degrees gradient so you can still keep good pace. Do an easy walk back and you have had a great workout.
What are some benefits of sprinting? For each benefit, please briefly explain it.
Some of the key benefits of sprinting include the following;
- Increased ROM at the legs. With constantly jogging, we use a very small ROM, which can load up the same part of the joints, tendons, and ligaments. By sprinting, you are using a larger range of motion which uses different parts of the joints.
- Secondly, sprinting tends to activate the core muscles much more than jogging. Activating the muscular system, even though the force is higher, can actually take more pressure off the joints and, in fact, reduce the chance of injury. So by adding sprints or strides into your routine you increase the variability in your training, work your muscles more and reduce your chance of injury.
For more tips get a copy of my book for free “How to get to the line in the best shape possible” at www.everardpilates.com/book