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Two Simple Tips to Get Faster

Speed is the one attribute that just about every athlete strives for. Think of some of the best athletes out there. My guess is most of the ones you’re thinking about are fast. Speed is based on stride length x frequency. So how far and how fast you stride will determine how fast you are. These tips will focus on increasing stride length by improving flexibility. The two main areas of focus will be the hamstrings and hip flexors.

Improving hamstring flexibility will allow for the hip to flex and knee to extend more in the contact or front leg. This will lengthen the stride in the front and allow for better loading of the leg to prepare for the next powerful stride. Use the supine knee extension stretch to improve hamstring flexibility. Begin lying on your back and grab behind your knee with your thigh perpendicular to the ground. Extend your knee as far as possible while keeping your thigh perpendicular to the ground. Hold for five seconds and repeat five times for two sets on each leg. Per form the stretch two to three times a day. To improve the stretch, dorsiflex your ankle by bringing your toes towards the ground.

Your next tip to get faster is to stretch out those hip flexors. Not only will this help you get faster, but may also eliminate low back pain while running since your main hip flexor, the psoas, originates in your low back. Use the kneeling hip flexor stretch to improve flexibility by kneeling on one leg with back erect and rocking forward feeling a stretch on the rear leg.

Perform the stretches multiple times a day especially before and after activity and you will see improvement in your flexibility and speed while reducing potential injuries.