Sprinting events, such as the 100m dash, require athletes to start from starting blocks. Athletes get into their stance and apply force to the blocks upon starting the event. Getting off to a fast start is an important aspect of being successful in Track & Field. Timing, discipline, and being completely aware of your surroundings aid you in getting out of the blocks fast.
Start Faster With These Tips
- Remain focused on your own race and getting off to your own good start. A lack of concentration can result in a false start. Too many false starts can result in you becoming scratched from the event. Paying attention to the competitor next to you can throw off your entire race. During practice, have friends or teammates, make some noise. Track & Field meets usually have fans in the stands. By simulating noises during practice, you will be better equipped to handle distractions during the race.
- Competing can be stressful. Practice breathing techniques to help you remain calm. Talk to your coach or trainer about improving your breathing to remain relaxed. This will help reduce false starts as well, but it will make sure that you are completely prepared to get out of the blocks quickly and correctly. Often, when too much thought is put into one aspect of something, it becomes too much of a distraction.
- Experiment with the blocks. If you normally set the right block forward, move it back and experiment with starting this way. Our dominant leg is usually used to apply the most force to the block, resulting in a faster take off, but that may not be the right technique for you. You will never know until you try. This should be done while practicing. Attempting to experiment during a meet will likely end in undesirable results.
- Guns are often used to signify the start of a race. Upon hearing the shot, sprinters burst into action. Two small pieces of a 2×4 can provide student-athletes with a safe alternative to practice with. Have a friend, teammate, or family member smack the two boards together. This can help simulate the noise, thus giving you a leg up on your competition. Practice makes perfect, and by simulating the start of an event, over and over again, you will be able to start out of the blocks more quickly.