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October 19, 2018  


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Coaching Archive
March 2017
ROCK AND ROLL WITH FOAM

December 2016
SUPER SET TRAINING

September 2015
CORE STABILITY-LATEST TRAINING THOUGHTS
TRAINING THE HIP FLEXORS AND HAMSTRINGS

August 2015
COACHING STRATEGY
A TRAINING PROGRAMME TO BOOST SPEED

June 2015
A FURTHER LOOK AT SKULPTING A SPRINTER

October 2014
TECHNIQUES FOR BUILDING CONFIDENCE

April 2012
PLANNING YOUR TRAINING FOR ENDURANCE RUNNERS

December 2011
INTENSE TRAINING VERSUS VOLUME TRAINING

September 2011
ACCELERATION -THEORY AND PRACTICE
DYNAMIC AND SPORTS SPECIFIC WARM - UPS

June 2011
RUN FASTER

October 2010
DISCOVER THE WONDERS OF VARIABLE PACE

February 2010
TRAINING DEVELOPMENT IN PRE_ADOLESCENT CHILDREN

November 2009
NUTRITION FOR ATHLETES

August 2009
UNDERSTANDING SPORTS DRINKS

June 2009
SIMPLIFICATION OF ENERGY SYSTEMS

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A 'SHORT TO LONG' APPROACH TO SPRINTING

SIMPLIFICATION OF ENERGY SYSTEMS

                                                          SIMPLIFICATION OF ENERGY SYSTEMS

Running like all forms of movement is made possible by the action of our muscles.

The major muscles of the arms and legs are involved in the running action alternately
contracting and relaxing in order to propel the body forwards.
Each time a muscle contracts it uses energy which comes in the form of a chemical compound named adenosine triphosphate(ATP).
Resting levels of muscle ATP are small so for us to be able to run even a short distance our bodies must continually remake or resynthesise ATP to sustain our run.
This is achieved by the transfer of the chemical energy found in fats,carbohydrates and proteins to rebuild the ATP molecule

Training be it sprint,endurance,interval or resistance does not increase our resting ATP concentrations.
Instead,training improves our ability to maintain ATP resynthesis.
Provided we can produce ATP at the same rate it is needed by the muscles for contraction,we can delay the onset of fatigue.
As soon as we fail to produce ATP at the rate we are using it,fatigue sets in.Thus the maintenance of ATP levels within muscle tissue is the PRIMARY GOAL OF ATHLETIC TRAINING.Our ability to resynthesise ATP within the muscle cells in order to support continual exercise relies upon 3 energy systems
                                                   
                                                               1) CREATINE PHOSPHATE SYSTEM(CP)
                                                               2) ANAEROBIC GLYCOLYSIS or LACTIC ACID SYSTEM
                                                               3) AEROBIC or OXYGEN SYSTEM

All 3 energy systems can operate at the same time within the same muscle cell.

For example,all three energy systems, including the aerobic system,are used simultaneously at the onset of sprint exercise.

The major feature that distinguishes these energy systems is the speed at which they function and the total amount of ATP resynthesised by each series of chemical reactions.

The greater the intensity of effort,the greater the reliance on anaeobic glycolysis and creatine phosphate.

If we look at training an individual for sprints over 100m the primary energy system will be 1).Training for 200m-250(30secs) primary energy systems will be 1&2)

Training 300-800(2mins) primary energy system will be 2).

Training onwards(2-3mins)primary energy system will be 2&3).

Training>3mins primary energy system will be 3).

Training for any specific event therefore should reflect greater emphasis on the particular primary energy system.

It is an unfortunate fact that many coaches focus the program for young athletes more on training to produce energy(eg endurance training)than is necessary rather than taining to express energy(eg strength,technique and mobility training).

Concentration on endurance development can and should wait until middle-late teens at the earliest.

Range of movement in all joint actions;all round balanced strength; and sound basic technical models executed at progressing Speed but within the limits of technical stability,are more the order of these days..

Endurance training is necessary only to a level which will permit adequate numbers of repetitions for sound technical models to be developed.
To proceed beyond this level,especially in running or jumping sets an early scenario for overuse syndrome injury

CREATINE PHOSPHATE SYSTEM(alactic anaerobic system)


Muscle cells contain a small amount of ATP and we normally deplete our reserves within seconds of beginning a sprint so to continue we need to find fresh ATP from one of our energy systems.
An energy-rich compound in the muscle known as Creatine Phosphate(CP) provides an immediate source for the resynthesis of ATP

ATP is a molecule consisting of an adenosine atom surrounded by three phosphate atoms.
When the muscle fibres shorten along their lengths to create movement ATP is used,it gives up one of its phosphate atoms to give energy leaving another substance called adenosine diphosphate(ADP)
.A transfer of a phosphate(P) from CP to ADPgenerates the necessary ATP.

This method of producing ATP is also short- lived as the muscles store of creatine phosphate is limited ,however they provide energy at a very high rate, ideal for sprint and power athletes requiring bursts of explosive speed but on the other hand dependent on their CP stores.
This is an anaerobic(without oxygen)alactic(without lactate-lactic acid converted to its salt) Energy SYSTEM
   

To produce more ATP the muscles will now have to break down one or two fuels available in the body,either carbohydrates or fats.
GLYCOLYSIS is the breakdown of Carbohydrates-either glycogen stored in the muscle or glucose delivered in the blood.

Glycolysis may go in one or two ways,carbohydrates broken down to produce ATP
with oxygen (AEROBIC METABOLISM-SLOW GLYCOLYSIS)) or without oxygen present (ANAEROBIC METABOLISM-FAST GLYCOLYSIS)).Fats on the other hand can only be broken downby the aerobic process

ANAEROBIC GLYCOLYSIS(lactic acid system)

Fast Glycolysis occurs during periods of reduced oxygen availability in the muscle cells and results in the formation from pyruvic acid to the organic end product Lactic Acid..

As lactic acid accumulates,due to the intensity of the work and lack of oxygen to the working muscles there is a corresponding increase in hydrogen ion concentration which is believed to directly interfere with muscle contraction and available energy.

Lactic acid is converted to its salt,LACTATE by buffering systems in the muscle and blood.
If too much lactate is allowed to build up in the muscle,the athlete will eventually be forced to cease running or at least slow down.
However for high speed running over short distances such as 400mand 800m large amounts of energy need to be made replica handbags available quickly and this energy system satisfies that criteria.
Although the anaerobic conversion of carbohydrates does not yield much energy for each unit used,not very efficient,the rate at which energy is produced far exceeds the speed of aerobic production.

AEROBIC SYSTEM(oxygen system)

Slow Glycolysis as it is termed occurs when the pyruvic acid this time does not convert to lactic acid but is transported to combine with oxygen present in the muscle cells 
This combustion takes place in  the mitochondria(engine room) which are specialized cellular organelles and gives rise to ATP Fats are available in the muscle as free fatty acids and they too,like the pyruvic acid,can be taken up by the mitochondria to give ATP

Although fats are not as rich an energy sauce as carbohydrates they have the advantage of being an almost inexhaustible store when compared to that of carbohydrate,which is only large enough to supply energy for approximately 100mins of continuous steady state running.
The by products of combustion CO2 and Water are dispersed through the bloodstream,the CO2being discharged from the lungs and water through either perspiration or respiration.

This energy system depends on oxygen being available at all times,the intensity of the run having a direct effect on enough oxygen being available

In conclusion the proportion of energy contributed by each of the three energy systems is related to the speed of running.

The faster an athlete runs ,the greater the energy required.

When a runner sprints over 100m he requires a large amount of energy to be delivered to his muscles in a relatively short space of time.

The creatine phosphate system can provide energy very quickly in relatively large amounts,but the store is exhausted fairly soon.

The person running over 800m also needs a lot of energy quickly-not at a high a rate as the 100m runner but certainly at a higher rate than can be delivered by the aerobic system alone.
As energy from the phosphate system is depleted quickly the 800m runner has to rely on the lactic anaerobic system as the major contributor of energy.

The longer the event the slower the pace,and the greater the contribution by the aerobic system.It is clear then that each athlete must train a predominance in the primary energy pathway for there specific event,failure to do so will not allow for their true potential to develop.