IF YOU WANT TO GET FASTER IN YOUR SPORT, THEN YOU JUST NEED TO GET STRONGER AND MORE POWERFUL AND IT WILL TAKE CARE OF ITSELF.
It is unbelievable to me that we continue to come across collegiate and professional athletes who have never trained for speed. They may have done agility ladder work, sled sprints, hill sprints, parachute sprints, you name it, but they have never truly trained in a way that will significantly improve their measurable sport specific speed of movement.
I believe the sport and coaching community has made a very unfortunate assumption in working with athletes from youth through professional. That assumption is that the athletes they are coaching understand and know how to properly move on the field. That they know what the acceleration phase should feel like, how to execute a great first step, how to decelerate, change direction, transition into the top speed phase, even how to jump and land. It is as if we assume that these are core competencies everyone has and we just tell them to go sprint around this cone, run across the field and back, do some suicides and then we focus on the skill of the given sport.
The truth is that sprinting, cutting, multi-directional movement and jumping are all skills that need to be taught. We start teaching 6 year olds how to dribble a soccer ball and hit a baseball without every teaching them how to run? The thing that amazes me is that most of the time they are never taught. They go from grade school, to junior high, to high school, and possibly to college and beyond without ever being taught how to execute the skill of acceleration, the skill of top speed, the skill of deceleration, the skill of cutting.
We have had amazing results with our athletes by teaching them the skill of movement through progressive drills, film analysis, whiteboard diagramming, potentiation work, and proper coaching cues paired with the development of high levels of absolute strength, power and speed-strength.