The importance of fixing your eyes on something when upright.

I have found that if I don’t fix my eyes on something when upright my technique falters and suddenly there is no stepping-over anymore.
Infact after todays practice I believe not doing this is at the core of all my problems when sprinting.
I’m talking about a wild Linford stare here. If I just gaze I’m done for. The intensity seems to be important.

Young Gatlin knows this too.

No doubt kid.

Interesting point Thor,

Just one or two other points …

  • A good total concentration ‘habit’ is important for habit forming in a racing situation
  • It can help as part of a mental check list for racing situations
  • There is a slight danger of this leading to tension if it is excessive- (just to be aware of that also) - [ and - N.B. Dwain Chambers in the WC final - all stare no speed!]
  • There is also the benefit of gamesmanship also - which worked well for Linford in later years.

“It can help as part of a mental check list for racing situations”

I’m hoping this will help me in competition because I have just realised that to have focus you have to focus on something!
You don’t improvise your way through a 100meters.

Thor, yes, you are on to something. The eyes control your body position. The only problem with fixing your focus on something static as you have described is that it will cause you to try too hard to get there. You should never focus on getting somewhere because it will make your mind think that it is taking too long to get there and you will tighten up and rush.

Your focus should be somewhere in your own little world. Close enough to almost touch it but not far enough away to cause you to become anxious.

funny you guys take up this topic.i have thought about this alot and yet again its a natural occcurance.when concentrating deeply enough this will happen.when in a face off with someone who treathens you, you will automatically zone in and this is when fight or flight happens but the sudden shock will trigger concentration and will take you into a one track system.

any thoughts?

As regards fixing your eyes on something static I agree that it tend to make you try to hard. The thing to do it seems is to constantly look forward but keep the vision hazy or blurry.
Sometimes when I put to much pressure on myself to deliver ,at top-speed I fight my own forward momentum by not ,in a way ,dearing to look too far forward.

thor as dcw said it can actually leave you tight.sometimes i felt by fixing upon an object i would actually get tight around my neck area in particular.

my advice to you is to keep the head up and stay do not have to focus on staring on something as most times it will occur naturally.being totally focussed will cause this to happen.think about yourself–this is exactly what carl lewis didn’t do in 88,he was concerned about ben johnson and totally lost look at his focus in 91,totally different!

what are these two guys focussing on!

I agree ,but I regard it mostly as a cue - when running it is all feeling.