To The Honorable Mike, Carl and the unknown but debating "West58"
I have some questions and some concerns with the Weyland study being discussed.
1. I understand that much of the information came from treadmill running…
2. While I don't object to the premise:
Faster Top Running Speeds are Achieved with Greater Ground Reaction Forces not More Rapid Leg Movements I do have concerns with what others seem be walking away from the study with…t sit this one out…
To explain: I regularly see posts on various websites by 2 gentleman who are pretty clearly "FTRSAGGRFMRLM" jedis.
The posts I see, don't explain the Weyland thesis but rather, they tend to dilute the question.
In a recent web rant, the author states that force being created volitionally by the athlete during high speed running is impossible. It goes on to say that no one could volitionally apply the measured ground support forces recorded by GRF plates during high speed running. He then proposes a defense of the following:
"…place an amount of weight equal to 2x body weight on a rack…The bar should be a couple inches lower than shoulder height (to account roughly for knee bend during running). The goal is to move the weigth approximately 4-5 inches higher than the starting point by chemical muscle mechanical work. This set up should approximate what happens in high speed running…Measurements show that forces generated during high speed running peak just before the half way point of the stance time, and are gone by about 2/3 of the stance time. Assume the athlete/you is/are a slow poke and give yourself a leisurely .11 seconds of total stance time (.088 in faster runners). So give yourself .07 seconds to accomplish your task, which is…while standing on one leg…give it all you got to move that bar and your bodyweight up 4-5 inches in the 0.07s your allowed. Then switch legs and do it again. Do it as many times as the number of footfalls it would take to run 100 meters or 200 meters.
All of that force is generated by gravity accelerating a falling body when it hits the ground not by chemical means. We adapted to that which is not visible in kinematic studies by focusing strength training and sprint training in a different direction. In doing so, it became obvious to us, other coaches, and the athletes that running form was the result of force application and not the cause of it."
The exercise, while cleverly devised, ignores some basics like the involuntary nature of concentrics and the donation of the eccentric action. This gentleman is the one who told me that isometric is not a contraction because the muscle neither lengthens nor shortens so muscle stiffness and the quality / effectiveness of amortization(s) is not a concern for Weyland worshipers?
My compatibility with the Weyland work is mostly found in the last quoted paragraph. The falling body / gravity present a potential for "positive work" to be done. Clearly force is in play, the use of said force "for the good of mankind" or in the typical case, a sprinter, is dependant on many things. While "cycling" and drills perscribed with the specific intent of trying to improve turnover, are subject to serious question, to ignore biomechanic concerns is suspect to me. The nature of the foot strike, the eccentric strength qualities expressed, and a host of other sympathetic functions would seem to me, to go places well beyond the narrow scope of "force being created volitionally by the athlete during high speed running is impossible"
Oh yeah, the same guy told me that there is no / should be no "absorption of force" yet he describes the storage and return of energy, a mecha/chemo/neuro function.
Ultimately, I accept that "creating force or greater force" is panning for fools gold. However, the suggestion that one should ignore totally the concept of mechanical advantage in contacting the ground is a problem for me. And I get the feeling that the Jedi believe that once you drink the kool-aid, the other issues around acceleration somehow are taken care of? For that matter, if one accepts the premise / thesis statement, in order to get greater force when any one starts from a dead stop, in an albeit twisted view does that mean that the ultimate search should begin and end with starting technique? Oddly, a block start relies on mecha/chemo/neuro because there is no falling body and unless you clear the blocks, there is no falling body to generate force???
Seriously (as much as I can be on this board at least) I want to drink the kool-aid, its the red dye # 2 that I am having trouble keeping down…or I may be full of crap?