Forward lean

I am curious to know Is it just a strength issue, or relaxation issue when a sprinter has too much forward lean and back side mechanics.
I have a rookie runner - 20 years old, coming from football, and never ran track in his life, but tonnes of ability, and is trying to make the change.
His first 60m was 7.05 and ugly. we have been working together for 5 months - and there has been some imporvement but not as much as I would like

You’ll probably find that he thinks the more he pushes and muscles the run, the faster he will go. This is pretty common. Your job is to show him through training that this isn’t the case.

Use the scooter analogy as this is often easy to understand as it gives more obvious cause and effect than sprinting. There comes a point when the more you push, the more it slows you down because you are braking and re-accelerating. i.e. contact times must become shorter and quicker the faster you want to go. The long powerful contacts move you from a standstill, but as the scooter gathers momentum, the pushes need to be shorter and quicker until there is a point where you are doing the smallest little jabs that will almost feel purely vertical. Same applies to sprinting.

Have you ever had him try the “reach and run”. Tom Shaw taught me this drill (although I’m sure he got it from somwhere else) and it has worked quite successfully to teach proper lean. It’s kind’ve like the falling start except you extend the arms straight forward and parallel to the ground and the body lean achieved should be appropriate. This could be a start.

The price of lamb is quite high these days.

I swear to you I’ve read some of your posts and sometimes I do not follow. Could you explain the innuendo?

Like your response, it also doesn’t remotely relate to Coach Luc’s question. :slight_smile:

Just having some fun. The part he was asking about is more likely from 20-60m when the athlete should be coming up.

Yes DCW — in the accel transition phase, very aggressive too much forward lean - even stretches his head and neck forward and his feet are so high in behind him with real pointed toes.
I try to emphasis relaxation, keeping the feet underneath, toes up shorter punch etc… I am thinking it will come with time, being it is his first year on a track, but man it is ugly and it slowing him down.


My apologies for being no help whatsoever, I misunderstood.

it can take a long time to change form. It took me over a year. I use to run with no lean at all and too much back kick. I think showing him a tape of a technically sound runner and having him imagining him running like that should help. I took off a year with no training, but almost everyday I would see myself running with perfect form and I came back and ran a hell of a lot better than I use too and actually faster.

What you need to eliminate, if I understand what’s going on, is any lean that is caused by bending at the hips or not having a straightened back. If the head, shoulders, hips, knees, feet are not all aligned then your athlete won’t be getting the most of their running. Any lack of proper posture in the back will cause the whole system to break down and the body will lose its power and elasticity. My best guess is that your athlete is extremely inflexible in the hips, hamstrings & lower back and has weak erector spinae muscles. Look into training those areas in a comprehensive program to correct the problem of lean.