Hannah Cunliffe makes front page Seattle Times, and video

Oh my goodness, I just watched the jumping…

My one question to the coach - is the intent designed for a short or long term benefit? And if either or both how are they measured?

Does the coach or the program have recent result oriented data that can be shared regarding these exercises? Of course I do realize that modalities can result differently between individuals.

Thank you for a well versed post…this will be another exciting year in track, it’s all fun, and don’t have to be #1 to enjoy.

Yes, those jumps don’t look worthwhile, including the shoe issue, but then, coach Mike may just be trying something new(that is, until he hears about the posts here:) ) Coach Mike usually is very careful, and I have overheard many times his lectures to athletes of proper training, both on and off the track.
He will not allow anyone to race if they experience any problems or pain at all. He will not let you do any workouts that are not appropriate, or that your not physically ready for.
His workouts are only 1.5 hours long, not intensive and only 3 days a week.
Coach Mikes most memorable saying… “less is more”…

That’s a good sign, and I’m hoping those jumps were a one time thing meant for the news cameras. His results are terrific, so without seeing what actually happens in training we can only speculate from the video, and that section of the video is worrisome. I hope to see her run 11.5X or faster this season.

No that isn’t what I am saying. I was saying it isn’t our place to tell a coach who has obviously steered his product to very high level what to do. Do I agree with the depth jumps? No, especially not in spikes. I guess I am commenting on the fact that evry time this girls name gets mentioned, it begins a cascade of negative posts saying how bad something is training wise or how someone is faster somewhere. I am not qualified to comment on her training because I haven’t witnessed the body of work. We are basically viewing a soundbyte of her training. What is undeniable is that she is far and away the best sprinter in her age group and has been for some time so I suspect her father must be doing something right in her development. She is a kid, lets celebrate the fact that we may be witnessing something special. She seems like a great kid and she looks to have a bright future.

I do not think the character of Mike is in question.
He seems like an alright guy.
Doing a good job as a dad and father of 8 kids and trying his hand in a seemingly organized way.
We dont have the benefit of seeing the entire training routine but we can see and say based on this footage.
Look again please at this girl and tell me I am wrong seeing she is heavy on her feet and sweeping sound says this sprinting should be done when she is much fresher than when this filming was taken.
Depth jumps at that age is not reasonable.( yes we argue why depth jumps ever but that is for another discussoin). Do we need to debate about this on this site? No. Most of you worth your salt know this for sure.
We are hashing out right and wrong here so lets call it how we see it.
most of you are out there doing enough and you can see for yourselves.
Great if she has done as well as she has thus far and more power to her. TMSSF has already mentioned do not be fooled by short term gains compromised by long term development.

I think Coach Mike is doing well with the team, here is a list of just a few of the accomplishments…without names:

“Name XXXXX”: Career Highlights: 2010 AAU National Champion - Track & Field All American in Sub-Bantam Girls Muli-event. Also placed 2nd in the nation in the Long Jump and High Jump with a 7th place finish in the 100M. She is an 7-time AAU Jr Olympic medalist (09,10). Broke the 8 yr old age group World Record with a wind legal jump of 13’-9.75" prior to her 9th birthday in San Diego, CA. Finished 2nd in the country at the AAU Jr Olympics in 2009 in the Long Jump

Name “YYYYY”: Career Highlights: 2-time National Champion - AAU Jr Olympic Games (2009). Midget (age 12) boys discus and shot put.

Name “ZZZZ”: Career Highlights: 2010 “ZZZZ” was the AAU Jr. Olympic Champion in the Sub-Youth (age 13) girls long jump with a jump of 17’-2.5". “ZZZZ” had a 2010 season’s best of 17’-6". She had 2 top 15 finishes in the sprints as well; with a 12.60 100M and a 25.92 200M. 2009 “ZZZZ” was 2nd in the country in the midget girls (12 yr old) long jump at the AAU Jr. Olympic Games (Des Moines, IA).

Name “TTTT”: 2010 (age 14): 3rd in the country in the javelin - AAU Jr. Olympics 136’-10". With a season best of 149’-2".

Name “SSSS”: Career Highlights:“SSSS” is a 4x AAU Jr. Olympic National Medalist in the sprints and jumps (09, 10). She is a 2x USATF Jr. Olympic National Medalist - All-American in the sprints (08).

Name “PPPP”: USATF National Indoor Champion (West Zone) - 400 Meters, AAU Region 12 Champion - 400 Meters and 4x Phillipine National Champion (200, 400) in 2005 and 2006.

Obvious :slight_smile: : Career Highlights: 6-time AAU National Champion - Track & Field All American, 4-time USATF Track & Field All American. 4x 200M National Champion AAU jr. Olympics (07,08,09,10); 2x 100M National Champion AAU jr. Olympics (08,10). 2010 season’s best of 11.71 and 23.91 finish the 2010 season as US #1 in both and events and #1 on all world lists for 14 yr old girls.

Name “KKKK”: Career Highlights: In 2009 “KKKK” won the national title in the long jump for midget boys (12 yr olds) at the AAU Jr Olympic Games (Des Moines, Iowa). In 2008 he was the Age group World Record holder 10 yr old boys long jump 5.15M : 16’-10.75" this was set at the USATF National Indoor Chmps. (Western Zone) in Flagstaff AZ on Feb 24. This was done prior to his 11th birthday. 2 time AAU Track & Field All American, 2-time USATF Track & Field All American (‘07 & ‘06, '07)

Name “BBBB” Career Highlights: “BBBB” was a double sprint medalist in 2009; she was 3rd in the country in the 100m at the AAU Jr Olympic Games (Des Moines, IA) and 6th in the country in the 200m. The year previous she was 2nd in the 60M at the 2008 USATF National Indoor Chmps. (Western Zone).

In all of last year, I never saw any sort of “depth jumps” so that is quite new, in fact, other than doing different hurdle exercises, stair work and starting blocks, there was no other equipment used…so this is something new, and I’m actually surprised.

Rich, it appears from your posts you may know Mike. If so I wonder if it would be possible to talk to him re the reasoning for the jumps, not in confrontational way just more I am wondering :confused:

My daughter was on his Seattle Speed club last year…I could send him an email and see what he says…

Firstly, regardless of her age (or the success of the coach’s program) the execution of the depth jump is just horribly wrong. The simple rule is that you should always jump up at least as high as where you came from. Her jump over the hurdle is much lower than her position on the box, meaning that most of her potential energy is just absorbed and not utilized.

Secondly, jumps such as these are on the high end of our exercise inventory. If you use it at such an early training age already, you have lost the opportunity to introduce a new stimulus, a means of intensification, later in her career.

I wish her all the best…but, r u kidding me?8 year old age group world record as an accomnplishment?We do not have even stats in Italy or Europe for thos e age groups!
No one can be against her, nor not supporting the coach…but presenting a resume which shows improvements in 10-12 yo boys…well, It’s just what happens naturally…puberty and growing up.

“It’s just what happens naturally…puberty and growing up”

Yes, of course it is…and not usually finished “growing up” until age 18 or 19.


By no means am I defending the depth jumps. I never have my athletes do them as I think the risk outweighs the reward. We don’t know if he altered his regimen to “spice it up” for the cameras or if it his regular routine. I guess as she isn’t my athlete, I will just take a wait and see attitude toward her development. I don’t know if Mike reads these forums, but I doubt he is going to listen to any of us anyway.

I don’t have a problem with the training methods of other coaches. It is not my responsibility.

I do not agree with assumptions there are World records for kids, below is from the NSW Little Athletics State records, I did not bother searching for Australian records.

http://www.laansw.com.au/ competitions, records

U/10 -a 9 year old boy – Long Jump 5.17m 16 Mar 1980
U/11- a 10 year old boy – Long Jump 5.34m 7 Feb 1987

I am with you. I have way too many things to worry about other than other peoples athletes. Putting records out there for kids is a little irresponsible. It sets bars too early in the development path. I agree with many of you that you shouldn’t sacrifice long term development for short term gains. I guess I just feel bad that everytime Rich posts something regarding Hannah, the responses seem to be overly negative. I applaud her ability, I have nothing invested in her development so other than saying I don’t agree with some things, it isn’t my responsibility to fix them.

I agree with speedcoach…irresponsible to have a record book for 9 yo!
I posted Hannah races and bio on an Italian track web site…cheering for here on the other side of the ocean!:slight_smile:

This is not my statement, just a “cut -n- paste” from the Seattle Speed website :)… some of the wording, which, I’m sure, is designed as a personal “sports card” and a “feel good” for the athlete involved.


The official US record from USATF for Hannah’s age group is 11.35 by Angela Williams (born 1/30/1980, set on 7/28/1995).

Angela Williams won FOUR NCAA Championships in the 100m at USC and went on to win international medals. That’s what Hannah should be looking at. Hannah is larger, which likely hurts her is the start, but if she works on her start some (especially staying down longer in her drive phase) she may be able to get close. I think she will surpass Jodie Williams’ time at the same age (which I think is 11.56), but 11.35 for a female is a different world.

From my life experiences.

A lot of the time a talented young athlete is coached by a person (coach1) who does not really know what they are doing but get results, sometimes that person is receiving advice from someone who does not want to take the reins so to speak.

Along comes coach2, who can talk the talk and simply ups the intensity which leads to improvements. After the peak is reached little happens other than the athlete believing they are not genetically gifted enough.

A lot of media coverage turns into very little, it doesn’t take long before people start asking what is happening and there will be more than one who will go out of their way to humiliate the athlete.

As a parent the driving force is to do the best for the offspring and bullshit is often the driving force behind a lot of successful trainers who seem to have the motto “if i can’t brand them then i would rather see then leave”.

Mate I wish you luck and the only advice I have is to continue to do what you think is the best for your offspring.