TRAINING YOUTH ATHLETES
Youth athletes tend to have poor posture due to the fact that they are not physically developed. You want to train your young athlete to stay tall without too much unnecessary movement.You’ll often see too much rotating of the shoulders and torso with sloped shoulders.
The tendency for youth athletes is to “pound the ground” and the challenge is to train them to be light on their feet. Do this by instructing your athlete to pull their toe-up after each contact. This also puts their chin angles in a proper position.
Knee drive is a vital aspect of sprinting for any age and it is very important to teach this technique early so that your youth can build upon it. The knee will come up when the heel comes up and cycles through.
Heel recovery is important because it keeps your foot contact light and brings your knee up into the proper position.
Mini hurdle training develops heel recovery as it provides an obstacle to step over.(Place 10 mini hurdles at 3 foot spacing to train at a higher speed.)
Young athletes tend to let their arms swing out of control. The most important point of proper sprinting technique in regards to the arms, is keeping a 90-degree bend at the elbows.
Additionally, it is important to keep your arms swinging at the side and not in front.
The sooner you can implement proper running techniques, the further along your youth’s athletic development will be in the training process. This will serve as a great advantage in their athletic career.