Creating a speed development program knowing where you are

I vividly remember my first day of my first assistant coach job after leaving the University of South Florida. I was watching the head coach run groups through all day and most of what we were doing was all speed and agility related. However, these were skills and drills I had never seen before and was honestly intimidated myself to demo. Now this job was in the private sector which explains why we spent more time on speed and agility then weights, unlike the college realm I had just left.

I remember leaving the facility my first day and thinking two things; how in the hell did he program that? and I need to practice this so I can give precise demonstrations.

Over the past close to decade now I have felt myself travel through the following three stages of coaching speed development. Most coaches I meet fall into three categories with speed and agility programming;

·      Understand

·      Know concepts

·      Mirroring

One take away I took from Brandon Marcello a few years ago that really hit me is “knowing is not understanding”. Therefore, I say some coaches understand programming while others know concepts. Knowing concepts is great and you can get good improvements with athletes but it is not fulling understanding the programming and science behind speed.

I would venture to say that the ones that know concepts are great but just do not have the time to commit to fully understanding speed or teach it. Which is why I am going to give you guys a huge hack toward fully understanding speed development next week!

The last level to me are the coaches that are just mirroring what they. The mirror level is by no means a bad thing I know I was once there. I can vividly remember seeing a drill somewhere and saying to myself “that looked great I am going to use that next week”. The challenge is getting to the point where you know where that drill fits by understanding the skill sets of speed development.

By: Kevin Hollabaugh, MHA, CSCS, USAW, FMSC, CSAC