You have taken 500 throws over the last three weeks but you still feel slow. You still feel like the positions you are hitting aren’t intense enough, there isn’t enough energy going into the shot and the movement is deflating at the front. Is there hope to improve your speed? You have your cues, you have been doing your weight room work but WHEN will it carryover? Will your speed ever hit that top end that is needed to be an elite thrower?
Speed Development: Physiology
Speed is a buzzword. We love to use it, we know WHAT it is, but do we really comprehend how to develop speed? Do we even know how to increase speed? Heck, do we even know the adaptations that occur to enhance speed?
By comprehending the necessary adaptations, we are then able to analyze the training necessary to stimulate an adaptation that will ultimately lead to speed development.
When a thrower is able to coordinate their muscles quicker through an enhanced twitch force, they are able to sequence the muscular firing a bit faster. This means the organism (athlete) needs to learn how to enhance their muscular firing, not only in the weight room but also in the circle. This occurs by changing the mindset of training to become more technically aware in all realms of training. It has been established (in Part 1) that technique ultimately is responsible for speed enhancement inside the circle.
When throwers approach all aspects of training with a technical mindset, SPEED is enhanced dramatically! The throw becomes more fluid and movement becomes snappier.
What does it mean to have a technical mindset?
By approaching every throwing session with 1-2 specific cues and working toward those cues OVER AND OVER AND OVER again, the positions in the circle will become refined. This technical mindset will then achieve various throwing “epiphanies” regarding different positions. As they progress through thousands of throws, the thrower will have hundreds of epiphanies, ultimately leading to a mindset that is entirely based around TECHNICAL AGGRESSION instead of emotional/meathead aggression.
How would this carry over into the weight room? Every major movement should be done with technical literacy. Snatching heavy forces a positive muscular sequencing but it also forces technical literacy. To lift heavier weights in the snatch, the movement must be done with greater precision. The same goes for jerks, cleans and other Olympic lifting variations. This sparks a technical mindset, completely altering the mindset in training.