By Kevin Fitzpatrick - Last updated: Wednesday, July 1, 2015
Dr. Tommie White, University of Southern California assistant coach, uses the “Desensitization Hurdler’s Drill” to help hurdlers get better at jumping over different hurdle heights. By alternating the height of every other hurdle in this drill, athletes are forced to be consistent with their jumps and maintain speed over the varying hurdles.
Desensitization Hurdler’s Drill
Drill Summary: In this drill, alternate the height of every other hurdle for your athlete. As they become more comfortable running and jumping over those hurdle heights, gradually increase the heights until the hurdles are as high as desired.
By Kevin Fitzpatrick - Last updated: Monday, June 1, 2015
Karim Abdel Wahab, Colorado State assistant coach and member of the Egyptian Olympic staff, uses the “Walk in Through the Hands” drill to get his athletes to keep their shoulders square over the hurdle and train them to keep their trail leg tight to their body.
Walk in Through the Hands
Drill Summary: Line up a row of five hurdles back-to-back. Athletes begin by walking up to the first hurdle and placing their hands on the outside of the hurdle. Next, they bring up their non-dominant leg, keep their hands on the hurdle, and step over the hurdle. Do this for all five hurdles, then go back to the start and step with the dominant leg. It’s important to work both legs so athletes maintain good balance and avoid injury.
Keys to the Drill:
1) Trail leg tight.
2) Heel close to the butt.
3) Slight upper body lean.
4) Shoulders square forward.
By Kevin Fitzpatrick - Last updated: Friday, May 1, 2015
Purdue University head coach Rolando Greene knows the importance of finding a rhythm when attacking hurdles. In this drill, athletes work on endurance and their three-step and five-step hurdles.
Hurdle Rhythm and Endurance
Drill Summary: Set up a row of hurdles with each hurdle 21 feet apart in a straightaway. Coach Greene recommends 5-15 hurdles in the row. Athletes sprint through the course making sure to step three times between each hurdle. Alternate working on getting the lead and trail leg over the hurdle on each rep.
Keys to the Drill:
1) Hips square to the hurdle.
2) Lead knee lifted to the height of the hurdle.
3) Compact the torso.
4) Trail leg fires straight up and down.
By Kevin Fitzpatrick - Last updated: Sunday, March 1, 2015
The extra space between the second and third hurdles in the “3-Step 5-Step 3-Step Drill” allows the athlete to sprint faster than they’re usually able to. This is why University of Arkansas assistant coach Doug Case uses the drill – to train his athletes how to handle the hurdles at overspeed.
3-Step 5-Step 3-Step Drill
Drill Summary: Set up four hurdles. The distance between the first and second hurdles should allow for a proper 3-step interval, followed by a 5-step interval between the second and third hurdles, and one more 3-step gap between the third and fourth hurdles. The athlete takes off on the coach’s command, focusing on reaching top speed during the 5-step interval so they can learn to hurdle running slightly faster than their usual pace.
Keys to the Drill:
1) Be very fast on the 5-step portion.
2) Step down quickly with the lead leg going over the hurdles.
3) Pull the trail leg through on a flat plane.
4) Develop a rhythm.
By Kevin Fitzpatrick - Last updated: Sunday, February 1, 2015
Teach your hurdlers how to explode out of the blocks with this drill progression from Colorado State University assistant coach Karim Abdel Wahab. Coach Wahab wants runners to come out of the blocks with their body on one line through the knees, hips, shoulders and ears.
Acceleration Progression for Hurdlers
Drill Summary: Runners begin the progression with the lean and catch, where they practice keeping their body in line to get the feel for the proper position out of the blocks. Next, runners get on their knees and practice their arm separation, focusing on getting big separation between both elbows. Finally, both techniques are combined in the post up movement simulation.