Dorsiflexion of the foot during sprinting


There was a bit of a misunderstanding in my post on details in yesterday’s blog. Dorsiflexion occurs after toe off. I strongly believe it NOT something you have to coach or make the athlete consciously aware of. Dorsiflexion will happen if the foot strike into the ground is correct. As far as I am concerned the attempt to cue and coach dorsiflexion is another case of over analysis. It has been my experience that cueing dorsiflexion, may result in more dorsiflexion, but result is less force application. I call it hot footing; the athlete becomes so conscious of dorsiflexing the foot that they try to pull the foot off the ground prematurely. There are some many more important things that can be coached in the sprint. Remember sprinting is a natural activity. I strongly believe that we need to tap into the wisdom of the body and work to let things happen, rather than try to make things happen. It also goes back to something I learned over 35 years ago, coach causes not symptoms. I also learned that the great coaches I have been around keep it simple, they do not try to baffle with BS.

Vern Gambetta

Vern Gambetta

Director at Gambetta Sports Training Systems
Vern is the Director of Gambetta Sports Training Systems. He has been the a conditioning coach for several MLS teams as well as the conditioning consultant to the US Men's World Cup Soccer team. Vern is the former Director of Conditioning for the Chicago White Sox and New York Mets. He has lectured and conducted clinics in Canada, Japan, Australia and Europe and has authored six books and over one hundred articles related to coaching and sport performance in a variety of sports. He has a BA in teaching with a coaching minor and an MA in Education with an emphasis in physical education from Stanford University.
Vern Gambetta


Athletic Development Coach & Consultant. Founder of GAIN Network. Proud dad. Love to read everything.
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Vern Gambetta

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